Have you ever gone to a club, watched a go-go dancer do her thing, and think you could do the same? Did you then muster up enough courage/blood-alcohol levels to climb a speaker to do the same, thinking you look just as good as those girls? If so, please stop.
Contrary to popular belief, go-go dancing is not just club dancing. It’s skilled entertainment that takes a lot of work and effort to perfect. If you don’t believe me, believe Rebecca Kelly, co-founder of NYClique and a New York City go-go dancer for the last seven years. The sexy R Kelly (the dancer, not the golden-shower-loving pedophile) is attempting to bring the spunk back into nightlife, one 6-inch-heeled step at a time.
So, if you want to be a go-go dancer, get off the speaker and audition for NYClique. Or try to befriend a promoter or dancer. Either way, you’ve got to follow the rules and here they are.
Clubplanet: What is a good age for a go-go dancer to start working?
Rebecca Kelly: You have to be a minimum of 18 years of age to work for NYClique, but we prefer that you’re 21. The clubs don’t really want underage girls. It’s very hard to have them working, particularly now. There are ways around it, though.
Clubplanet: And what about a girl’s appearance?
RK: Women are beautiful in general and there are different ethnicities and looks and mixes. I just think if you take those beautiful women and weed them out, you can create something explosive. I don’t like when girls look the same.
Clubplanet: So if a 21-year-old beautiful woman was auditioning for you, what should she wear?
RK: What makes me crazy the most is when girls show up in lingerie. It’s like, girlfriend, go to a strip club. Hustler is on 51st.
Clubplanet: I gather less is not always more.
RK: If you’re really going over board on your outfit, you either have to prove something or you’re trying to distract me.
Clubplanet: What about the body? Is a six-pack absolutely necessary?
RK: You don’t have to have a six pack. You don’t have to have the fake boobs. But if you’re hanging over your shorts, there’s a problem.
Clubplanet: No fake boobs? I’m confused.
RK: You have to be appealing to the eye. You are eye candy when you’re up there, whether you like to believe it or not. Obviously, things that appeal to men are a plus. The boobs, having a good butt, firm legs. You can be a plain looking girl, a plain-Jane because we can change that.
Clubplanet: So what’s the difference between a hot club girl dancing on a speaker and a go-go dancer?
RK: I hate regular club girls. Being a go-go dancer and then just being out with your friends are two very different things. When you’re dancing with your girls, you’re not very conscious of your movements, your body, or your posture.
Clubplanet: What’s the number one mistake girls make when they’re dancing?
RK: A lot of girls forget they have arms. The arms kind of stay side to side. You can’t do that. You have to be expressive and theatrical in a way.
Clubplanet: Okay, let’s say a girl actually gets a job. How much can she expect to get paid?
RK: There are industry standards as far as pay goes. Depending on the nightclub and the prestige, girls can make anywhere from $150 to $225 or more.
Clubplanet: Not too shabby. And how many hours does a girl work to cash in like that?
RK: A lot of girls usually show up between 11:45 and 12:30. Most places start time is 12:45 and industry standard is usually three 20 minute sets or four 15 minutes sets. So you’re only dancing for an hour the entire night.
Clubplanet: That leaves a lot of time for partying.
RK: Don’t get wasted at work. A lot of girls have such a need to drink or be on something. A lot of clubs don’t even want you drinking and that’s a new thing as well, with recent events.
Clubplanet: But drinking is so much fun.
RK: Getting attacked is a lot easier when you’re drunk. Also, falling and injuring yourself. So many bad things can happen when you’re drunk. And it makes you look bad. You look flat out terrible. You don’t dancer properly.
Clubplanet: And the other obvious reason not to get drunk…
RK: Girls are leaving at 4 o’clock by themselves and a lot of the time you’ll get noticed as the dancer. They remember you looking half naked. If you’re intoxicated, you have to protect yourself when you’re leaving.
Clubplanet: I got it. What if your boyfriend is the promoter and he walks you out? Is that a good idea?
RK: Try not to sleep with the staff. A lot of girls think it’s going to get them ahead. It’s going to get you ahead for a very short time. And then it’s going to die out and you’re going to die out with it. This is a business and a lot of people don’t look at it that way. You have to handle yourself accordingly. That’s why a lot of girls can’t handle the longevity. One day you’re in, the next day you’re out.
Clubplanet: But promoters are still important, aren’t they?
RK: A promoter may see you as fresh meat and that you’re stupid and don’t know any better. It’s possible that you may work once or twice. If you’re going to try to get into the business, try to befriend an actual dancer.
Clubplanet: Dancers want to help other dancers? That sounds weird…
RK: For the most part, she’s probably not going to want to help you out. The more dancers there are, the less work there is for everyone else. But there’s always room for more as long as they’re good enough.
Clubplanet: I’m so confused. So is it skill or networking?
RK: It’s who you know. If you can’t dance and you know every single New York City dancer, it’s not going to help you. You have to have some skill but you have to know the right people.
Clubplanet: And have the right look…
RK: Always go over the top with your appearance. Always have your hair looking phenomenal. If you don’t have your hair and makeup looking fierce, you just look sorry. You can’t be a plain Jane when you’re up there; you have to look like a diva.
Clubplanet: What if a girl doesn’t know how to apply makeup?
RK: Start learning. Go to the MAC counter and let them teach you. Start looking at magazines and just study pictures from makeup ads and look at how the colors are. Fake eye lashes are a must. You have to have them. I don’t care, they make the eye. You also have to wear a lot more makeup if you were going out normally. You’re under bright lights and you have to pan on the makeup.
Clubplanet: Make-up, hair, and a diva-like attitude. Anything else?
RK: If you’re not going tanning, you should figure something out. Pasty is not sexy. And when you’re tan, your body looks more defined.
Clubplanet: One last thing…What’s the competition like?
RK: There is a lot of competition. Go-go dancing is so cut throat, it’s unbelievable. There have been a lot of girls in the business that have been he