Monday, 5 April 2010

Fetish Thoughts

It seems an idea has dropped into my lap - and quite neatly formed at that - for a new act. Something a hundred miles from my Jackalope (which is exactly what I will need by the time this is over).
The question is, is it workable? The concept I have in mind is downright fetishistic and fetish is absolutley not my area of expertise.
I have seen quite a few acts over the years that the artiste has described as 'fetish' but which, to me, looked like a straight down the middle burlesque/cabaret or performance art act that simply borrowed from fetish with either leather/latex/bondage clothing or a quite alty soundtrack. But, as fetish is not something I am overly familiar with, it's hard to know whether a fetish audience would view these acts as fetish or not. I'm not sure where the line is. I wouldn't want to go around doing an act that I though was fetishistic but audiences just felt was creepy or worse, crappy.

The other question is, how sexual does a fetish act have to be? By its very nature fetish is related to sexuality in a way that my burlesque performances never are. Yes, I may wear skimpy costumes and show bosoms but sexual thoughts are the last thing I hope to inspire in my audience. Does a fetish act have to be arousing? Or, because it is performed in a burlesque context does it become more about studying and questioning the particular fetish - even burlesquing it? And if it is about burlesquing it, parodying it - is it appropriate for one to perform an act about a fetish one doesn't personally hold?

Finally, in the performances I currently do my body type is not a hinderance. It adds to the humour in a couple of my acts and is often disguised by a corset in the ones where it doesn't. I associate fetish performance with women of a traditionally desirable body type, unless of course the fetish is related to the body directly. Would a non-body related fetish performance be more coherent from someone with a more conventionally attractive body? Would a less conventionally attractive body distract from the theme and mix messages? (NB - I have not mentioned the body part to ask for anyone to validate me or compliment my figure. I am what I am and I only worry [usually] about my body in a burlesque context in relation to whether it would detract from what I am trying to say in my narrative.)

Anyway, these are all things I am wondering as an outsider looking into fetish and wondering whether to dip a toe in the water for the sake of a fun act idea. Any thoughts on the subject would be greatfully received...

'Til next time

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