Mit dem Sex reden, nicht immer nur über ihn – das unterscheidet Lvstprinzip von so vielen anderen Medien. Und was für Sex gilt, muss auch für Sexarbeit gelten – und deswegen kommt heute Katrina zu Wort. Oliver hat sie vor ein paar Sommern beim Couchsurfen in Budapest kennengelernt und war sofort von ihrer offenen, starken Ausstrahlung und ihrer tiefen Weisheit fasziniert. Wir sind es auch. Meet Katrina!
What have you learned on the dancefloor?
I first started pole dancing in Queens. I quickly learned both the light and dark sides of exotic dancing. I chose to embrace the light side, which included female empowerment, sexual liberation, and financial flow. I would hang out in the dressing rooms smoking cigarettes and taking photos of the girls getting ready or showing off their new shoes, and then would head onto the dance floor ready to take on all the creeps, freaks, and two-headed dragons without a care in the world. I always found women expressing their sexuality to be empowering and felt pulled to those who thoroughly enjoyed their work; we quickly formed a tribe as erotic exhibitionists. The girls and I got along well naturally by being all fierce and sexy. I felt at home in every club I danced in. I learned how to climb and spin, but mostly I enjoyed rolling on the floor like a lioness and purring at the cute ones. Once in a while I’d rub my vagina in extreme ecstasy.
What’s your favourite dancing style?
Getting on my hands and knees and flipping my hair around, feeling the music with my pelvis. Then grabbing some boy’s hair and pulling his head back, followed by a gentle nibble to the ear.
What are the differences between dancing styles for your feeling? What did you like the most?
Burlesque is classically understood as being more expressive than stripping, but in my opinion it is all about what you put into it. I feel Burlesque celebrates the divine feminine while stripping celebrates a more masculine energy. Burlesque empowers women’s sexuality in a new way that liberates body hair, plays with dominance and submission, unleashes the wild feminine, and restores confidence to the female/male body. There is an enormous opportunity to transform, empower, and assert dominance through striptease and pole dance as well. For example, I love to tease the men in my dance and if they’re good boys I’ll reward them, and if they’re bad, I’ll take their money and find someone else to torture. Both styles of dance/performance help energy flow in the pelvic bowl, and they help restore women in all their sensual goodness. My advice would be to never give up your power under any circumstance, and know your boundaries on the dance floor. Women are powerful, sensual, beautiful creatures that are worth the utmost respect and intense loving. We’re all Goddesses.
Can you tell us something about the subculture around the clubs you worked in?
While I feel passionate about expressing all the positive sides of exhibitionism, there are plenty of demons lurking in the shadows. It’s about being able to manage all the different aspects of the culture. There is definitely a lot of drugs and alcohol intertwined in the clubs and parties, which is hard to get away from if you leave yourself open to it. That could lead you down a pretty destructive road, speaking from personal experience. It’s important to set your intentions upon entering the beautiful chaos. If you want to hang on to your martini with two fingers and fling it around interchangeably with your fancy cigarettes then do it, enjoy it, and bathe in all its glory. It is possible to dance sober – I just didn’t choose that path, so I can’t speak from experience there. It is probably the healthiest choice in mind, body and spirit. Either way, as long as you’re making good decisions that you won’t regret in the morning. Also, it’s important to keep in mind that even though I was fully empowered and in joy 95% of the time, dancing can be an addictive gig on multiple levels, so beware.
What was special from your subjective point of view?
Being an exotic and burlesque dancer, a performance artist, and all around exhibitionist were all very different experiences for me. There’s the kink scene, which focused on BDSM, lots of sex parties with healthy boundaries, exotic dancing, which has a lot of ego involved, and burlesque and performance, which celebrates the divine feminine. Being involved in multiple subcultures in human sexuality was necessary for my development in seeing the whole picture of how women and men operate. I would have to say boundaries, integrity, compassion, presence and confidence are all important attributes to embody while exploring such sensitive and intimate subjects. Also, you have to be careful of creeps, predators, and phonies. If you are so blissed out that you get taken advantage of or you easily feel insecure and violated, which are both totally acceptable feelings to have, then some of these experiences may be triggering for you.
What’s empowerment for you?
Empowerment to me is the key to unlock our core selves. Empowerment means self-worth, integrity, self-love, confidence, boundaries, asserting yourself, and taking responsibility for your life. Empowerment is what every woman and man should feel when they brush their teeth in the morning and look at their beautiful selves in the mirror. Empowerment is walking away with your head held high and expressing your truth to your family, a lover, your boss, a friend, a co-worker, or a stranger. Empowerment is protecting yourself from abuse, supporting others who are being abused, and not abusing others. Empowerment is solidarity, defending your tribe. Empowerment doesn’t judge people, even when they’re a bad kind of weird. Empowerment has many faces but it is fierce and it is loving. I call my empowered self the blue-haired goddess. I depict her in my art with period blood dripping down her leg and milk oozing from her nipples. Sometimes she has a bow and arrow, or mermaid fins, or fairy wings, but she’s always naked because the body is beautiful. I urge you to discover your own inner goddess or god and see what that looks/feels like.
Was it a problem to have rude, unattractive people in your audience?
As a dancer I faced many challenges. There were pedophiles, men with superiority complexes, violent drunks and various other predatory reptilian creatures. Instead of allowing these interactions to weaken my spirit, I took it as an opportunity to grow stronger. It is do or die in this environment sometimes, so if you stay centered and self-loving you’re likely to succeed both emotionally and financially. My advice would be to witness the little child in these men who so badly need a strong mother figure and take pity on their lonely, self-loathing souls. This includes all the women and men who respond with hate in the world towards the LGBTQ community, sexually liberated individuals, women, muslims, and various other communities and minorities. That is why I feel it is important as a human being to lead by example by embodying these empowering attributes. Interestingly enough, people see exotic dancing as a lack of self-dignity, which is frustrating. However, it provides for the most enthralling opportunity to shift the consciousness into profound awakening to the divine feminine that lives in all of us.
Did you have to look at those fuckers with a smile on your face? If you managed to do so – how could you react that cool?
If I ever smiled at a predator, it was because I chose to. I strongly believe that there is nothing you must do as a functioning adult, there only are things you choose to do. I mean, you could choose not to eat if you wanted and many people do this. Feeling like you must do something is a victim mentality which most of us are quite used to. However, living in an empowered state is much more fun, I highly recommend it. There were moments when I did feel disempowered when I was dancing, which usually comes from feeling in-adequate, self-conscious, or helpless. If you feel like this in your life, you’ve given up your power. Be vulnerable with a trusting and loving friend, or when you’re home alone masturbating, not at the club.
How did your friends, family, lovers and other people react to your decision to earn money as sex worker?
I got different reactions from different people. My boyfriend at the time, who claimed to be a sex-positive feminist, ended up very jealous, controlling and demeaning, so I cut those ties. All of my friends were highly supportive as they could see how empowered I was and some even auditioned. However, it turned out to be more challenging than anticipated for them. It is definitely not for everyone. My family and I have a ‘don’t ask don’t tell’ policy since they are incapable of keeping up with my shenanigans.
What was your most positive experience?
My most memorable experience was at a club in Times Square called Lacie’s. I was sitting with the owner, who happened to be very cool, his friends, and this super sexy Russian stripper, Natalia. There were fifty and one-hundred dollar bills thrown around the couches while Natalie and I gave each other lap dances. I was in heaven. We were drinking the finest cocktails in the club and making thousands when all we had to do was be our beautiful, sexy selves and make out with each other. Natalia, her boyfriend and I had a sizzling hot threesome that night in a penthouse suite.
What was the most negative experience?
I was sexually harassed by my boss at one club. He cornered me, when I was drunk, in a room and began making demands. I reported him but they didn’t do anything about it that I know of. I never went back, but I’ll never forget that evening. I quit dancing altogether, realizing that the dangers outweigh the glory. Back to the boundaries and empowerment: it’s not easy maintaining balance when it’s four in the morning, you’re drunk and almost naked. That’s why exotic dancing is tricky business and if you really want to pole dance with nothing but pumps on, go to Burning Man, or be a heroine and invest in the challenge to help change the system.
Is there something you would like to say to someone who wants to work in the biz?
For any woman or man who is interested in the sex biz, I have a few things to say. Firstly, it’s a powerful experience, which means you may get knocked off your feet a few times. The important thing is that you’re able to get back up again. Next, trust your intuition and remember your self-worth. Exotic dance is very seductive (in more ways than one!) because of the money. I urge you to try other forms of sexual exploration first that embrace the real you and not just a Barbie image. But if you want to be a Barbie and try that out, fuckin’ do it, just own it and don’t let anyone limit your experience and if you lose your power and can’t get it back, walk away.
What’s your way now, are you still in dancing and stuff?
I moved out of NYC after 5 years of loving chaos. I did feminist protests, slut rallies, free the nipple campaign, stripping, burlesque, burner scene, kink parties, sex parties, dungeons, experimental theatre, street performance, you name it. I got burnt out and moved out to New Mexico, where I now live in an old Cider House near an Indian Reserve. I have been developing my intuition, getting in touch with nature, and beginning my master’s degree in the healing arts. I gave up drugs, alcohol and cigarettes for my health. I’ve been working on a series of goddess drawings and have been developing my empowerment on multiple levels as a daily practice. Maybe one day I will enter back into the city life and I’ll be that girl with a blow horn screaming about the divine feminine, wearing warrior paint and a thong. Thanks y’all! Peace and love.