Selina Prince

Selina Prince: Why My Teenager is Exposed to Burlesque

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I know there are a lot of people out there who would cringe at the idea of letting their teenager be around a bunch of people who take their clothes off for fun. It sounds obscene or wrong doesn’t it? Well I have to be honest…I just don’t agree with that.

I started my burlesque journey in January of 2014. I was depressed and unhappy on many fronts and I wanted something bold and artistic to do. I had a void inside me that needed filled by something. I wanted to stand up and make a difference somehow. I really don’t know how I decided on burlesque. It might have actually been my daughter who pointed me in that direction. She has always had a variety of different interests that most teenagers don’t.

 

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I ended up getting involved with a show called Miss Honey B’s Bourbon Boylesque. It was a fundraiser for Indiana Equality Action. When I tried out for this show, my daughter was 14. It was scary as hell trying out for something like this, and then I was asked to be a kitten. I had desperately hoped to be an actual part of the show and was really bummed to just be a part of the crew. My daughter was sitting with me on the couch when I was talking about how sad I was that I wasn’t a part of the show. She had kind words and comfort for me. I was sitting there watching my daughter be so supportive of me and she knew how hard it was for me to put myself out there. That’s when I made the decision to make the best of it. I told her that it was ok that I didn’t make it in right now. No one starts off at the top. They wanted me as a kitten so I was going to do the best I could at doing this job that I possibly could. And I did do a good job as a kitten. And by showing up and being there and being reliable, I also managed to weasel into a number and I got to perform on stage! That’s where it all started for me. I was able to show my daughter that no matter what, hard work and a positive attitude pay off.

 

 

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I started the TITS program and I worked hard and I was a member of Angel Burlesque that October. My daughter was now 15 years old and a sophomore in high school. She would come to rehearsals with me. A lot of people I am sure would question why I would bring a 15 year old to see a bunch of adults strip. Well here is why. Burlesque is about respect. All of these women respect and support each other despite their differences or whether they like each other or not. Not everyone sees eye to eye all of the time. That would somehow bend the rules of physics and mathematical probability for a group of 20+ women to all feel rainbows and sunshine and sparkles for each other. But no matter how I feel about anyone in this group, I respect them all and I would be there for them in a heartbeat. Because respect and being a part of a group of women who support each other isn’t about something as trivial as LIKING each other all the time. Why wouldn’t I want my daughter to see that? She gets to see how women can be respectful and supportive of each other. Burlesque is also about body positivity and loving yourself.

 

selinaprince_5The members of my troupe have a huge range of body sizes. Fat asses, perfectly round magnificent asses (Coty), big tits, little tits, tall, short….we all come in different sizes. Not every guy likes a teeny tiny girl with big fake tits. We are taught this over and over again but it’s not true. And real women don’t necessarily have curves. Some real women have no curves at all and are just naturally super thin and they are still sexy as hell and worthy of respect. I think that every woman struggles with their body image. I know that I do. There have been many times when I am about to go on stage and think that there is no way that anyone wants to see my jiggly body up there. But I have pulled it together and put it all on stage. And afterwards I have women come up to me and say that they wish that they had my body and confidence. MY BODY! Do you know just how completely mind blowing that is? We all feel that our bodies are somehow wrong or sub-par. But burlesque helps to shatter those ideas by showing that every body is beautiful and fabulous. It helps my self-confidence and I love helping other women see just how beautiful and fabulous they are…whether it is through burlesque or not. Why wouldn’t I want my daughter to see that? I am teaching her to love her body no matter what and to not be held down by the constraints of what our society says is beautiful. I am teaching my daughter to be artistic and respectful and bold and self-confident. I had a good friend insinuate that my daughter was what she thought of as “over sexual” due to me being a part of burlesque and her growing up with it. It was a little hurtful and is what got me to thinking about this whole subject in the first place.

 

But I have come to understand over the years the burlesque isn’t all about sexuality and getting naked. I know that a part of it. And sexuality is just a part of life. My daughter knew about sex way before I started doing burlesque. She had middle school boys trying to show her porn on their phones. Our society is always talking about sex, but not in the way that they should be. We need to be talking about sex in a safe, sane, and healthy way. I teach her about consent and how sex is a natural part of life. I am not saying that I don’t occasionally cringe when she comes to me wanting to talk about sex. I am like any other mom. But she does come to me because she feels safe enough to come to me. She knows that I will listen and respect her and give her advice. My daughter is almost 18 years old now and she is growing up in an environment that promotes all of these awesome things. She has so many role models of strong and amazing women as she is on the cusp of being a woman herself. And you know what….I am totally ok with that even if some people are not. I see being around burlesque during her teen years as a huge advantage. She gets to be around a group of bad ass men and women who expose her to the positive side of the sexual world she already lives in…..and her mom is sexy, confident, and can teach her how to put on false eye lashes in a jiffy!!! I call that a win!

Learn more about Selina Price here!

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Getting to Know Selina Prince

Photo By: Angela Leisure Photography

Photo By: Angela Leisure Photography

**Special Thanks to Angela Leisure Photography on Selina's feature 
photo above!**

What inspired you to start burlesque?
I have always loved dancing and have always wanted to be a performer, but it was always something I saw as a dream and not something that would ever be a reality.  I was too shy or busy in high school, then occupied with college, being married, having kids.  The idea has been there for a long while in the back of my mind, but there was always something in the way.  I would tell myself, “Oh you can do that after you lose 20 pounds” or “After you have a better job” etc.  At the begininning of this year, I just finally hit a point where I decided that if I wanted to do the things that I loved then I was going to have to start doing them NOW!  I was never going to be the perfect weight or have the perfect job or the perfect amount of money.  I started looking around on google for Indianapolis Burlesque and I really like Katie Angel’s message that “Real is Sexy”.  Katie was also one of the only people to respond.  They were getting ready to do auditions for
Miss Honey B’s Bourbon Boylesque the next day, and even though I was scared to death, I showed up and the rest is history.

How did you come up with your first routine?
The first routine I came up with was actually the second routine that I performed, which touches on another question. The very first routine I thought up was “Dark Magic” to Katie Perry’s “Dark Horse”.  I actually found that song on ITunes waaaaay before it became popular and super over played.  I thought that song was catchy and fun.  I love a wide variety of music from pop to metal!  I thought that in order to be able to start burlesque, I was going to need a routine to audition with, so that’s why I created “Dark Magic”.  I actually did not need to have a routine prepared so that got shelved into the back of my brain.  When Nerdgasm started coming around, I happened to think up my Mad Hatter routine.  I usually get ideas for my numbers by songs.  I will hear a song and think, “Wow, that would be great for….”.  And I was listening to Nine Inch Nails, heard the song “Into the Void” and knew that it would be a perfect fit for that character (especially
since i love Alice in Wonderland).  “Dark Magic” ended up being the routine I did for the Showgirl Showcase because I was having issues with a tendon injury and needed something fast because i wasn’t sure of my ability to perform, which is why I ended up using the one I had originally worked out in my head.  Sooooooo, long story short, music is usually what drives my routines!  I listen and sample out all kinds of music, new and old, and think about what the music makes me feel.

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Photo By: Angela Leisure Photography

What is the inspiration behind your stage name?
Selina is from cat woman’s alter ego name, Selina Kyle.  Prince is from wonder woman’s alter ego name, Diana Prince.  I am a bit of a nerd, I love comic books and super heroes.  And my personality in general is kind of a split personality, part good girl, part bad girl.  I thought it was the perfect mix!

How long have you been doing burlesque?
I have only been doing burlesque since January of 2014, or at least that’s when i became involved!

How have you changed, onstage and backstage in that time?
I have learned in life that experience is the ultimate teacher.  I have watched many different people perform burlesque since I started, I have taken classes and absorbed as much information as I can.  All of these things are super valuable, but actually performing is what has taught me the most.  Nerdgasm was probably the most influential, because it gave me the opportunity to perform the same thing over and over again.  Doing that allows you to become less nervous, to change and tweak your numbers, to see how different audiences effect your performances.  I still love burlesque and I am still the same weird, awkward, overly excited lunatic as I have always been!  I try to be mindful of others backstage and not rub my weirdness on them (at least not too much!).  But I just think that I have grown in confidence in my skills and i look forward to trying new things and growing even more.

Why in the world did you pick such a tired, overplayed song for your Dark Magic routine?
LOL—the answer is up above….but I seriously cracked up when I read this!!!  They did play the fuck out of this song, which is quite irritating because my idea came BEFORE they screwed it up by over playing this on the radio!!!

selinaprince1What tips can you give aspiring performers?
Go see burlesque shows and take classes and start listening to music or whatever it is that inspires your creativity and then just get out there and do it!  The only person that is holding you back is you!

A lot of the performers are often asked, what does What’s been your most memorable onstage moment?
Probably when my music just stopped dead on me.  In my mind I was thinking, “holy shit!” But I just kept going!  It has happened twice now, so I think that song is cursed…probably because it’s so tired and over played!!!!!  LOL!

Any embarrassing moments? 
The time that my pastie came off in “Night of the Dancing Flames” for the DK show.  I actually noticed that it came off, and I was responsible for getting the red cloth and walking across the front of the stage!

Why can’t you keep pasties on?!
I KNOW!  I think my nipples just need to see everyone!!!  Actually, it was just not using strong enough glue.  Which sucks, because I have to choose between glue that doesn’t hold well enough and I flash the people of Indianapolis, or glue that’s so strong that it feels like it’s ripping my nipples off when I remove the pasties!!!  My poor nips!

What’s your favorite part of burlesque?
My favorite part is honestly the people.  The people who do it and the people who come and see it.  I have met some of the most wonderful people ever being a part of this fabulous hobby!  If I wasn’t able to ever perform again (which would be terribly sad), I would still be incredibly blessed to have met all the awesome people I have met through burlesque.

Photo: Angela Leisure Photography

Photo: Angela Leisure Photography

Are there any parts of burlesque you loathe?
Loathe is a harsh word.  I love burlesque and wouldn’t do it if i didn’t enjoy it.  But the part I don’t like is kind of odd.  I LOVE being dressed up in costume, but I kind of dread the actual process of putting it all on.  Finding all the things and hauling all the things and remember all the things.  Putting on the contacts and eye lashes and all the make up and the glitter and the panty hose and glueing myself in and safety pinning it all to perfection….sometimes that process is just EXHAUSTING to even think about.  But the final product…that I LOVE and I LOVE performing and all the other things that come along.

Tell us about your muggle job.
I am a preschool teacher!!!  I know that’s probably weird for some people, but I don’t see anything wrong with it.  What I enjoy in my personal life and what I enjoy in my professional life are two seperate things entirely.  I wanted to be a teacher when I was in high school, it’s what I went to college for and I have been an educator in one form or another for 15+ years now.  I have been a zoo mobile educator, a volunteer coordinator, a director, a substitue teacher….all kinds of things.  I am really enjoying working with the younger kids right now.  I have a lot of freedom and flexibility with my lesson planning and the experiences I can give them.  My job is never boring!!!

If you could time travel with no consequences, where and when would you go?
I think ancient Greece, Rome and Egypt are all fascinating places.

If you could have lunch with any three people, past or present, who would you pick?
I love to laugh, so I would go to lunch with Louis C.K., Jimmy Fallon, and Robert Downey Jr. (he’s just sexy but I imagine him having a sense of humor)

If you could have dessert with any three people, past or present, who would you choose?  
I would pick fascinating women to go have dessert with.  Betty Paige, Amelia Earhart, and Ellen DeGeneres!

What is your perfect Jeopardy board (6 topics that you’d kick ass in)?
Animal Kingdom, Food, Harry Potter, Education, Mythology, Movies

Would you prefer to fly or be invisible?  Why?
What fun is being invisible…no one could see you or talk to you!!  Definitely flying!!  Imagine how fast you could get places.  No more airlines!!! FABULOUS!!!

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