How I became an exotic dancer

I get asked with some frequency how I became an exotic dancer. My story won’t necessarily sound like anyone else’s, because adult entertainers are some of the most varied people I’ve ever known. Everyone comes to it from different backgrounds and for different reasons. Some people are models or fitness trainers who want to capitalize better on their investment in their personal appearance, but others are “regular Joes” who simply need to make some extra cash. Some are sex workers who use the stage to meet clients. Others are working through issues about confidence. There are as many explanations as there are individuals.

I, however, am a professionally trained dancer. I am trained in modern, post-modern, multi-media, some ballet (but I’ve never cared for it), jazz, hip hop, Yoga, Indonesian, gymnastics, improvisation, spoken word, Contact Improvisation, and others. I love movement. I just love it. And because I absolutely cannot tolerate most office jobs, that means I have to find a way to make a living doing something else. Well, here’s a whole ton of training under my belt – why not use it to get paid? Theatre doesn’t pay at all for the most part. I still create Dance (note the capital “d”), but I do it for love, not money (good thing too in this economy). But I don’t want to do anything else right now, so Dance/dance is my love and my work. I became an exotic dancer, because I got sick of trying to find/hold “good” jobs.

I am also a personal fitness trainer (yay NASM!). I personally didn’t care for hunting down clients who would only come in for a month after New Year’s, so I gradually left that behind. I suggest NASM as a certifying organization – ACE is far too theoretical: When are you actually going to measure someone’s oxygen volume during a work out? Give me a break. NASM is far more practical, and far more interesting, in terms of being creative as a trainer who understand kinesiology. I digress…

I was also an educator. That has got to be the single most miserable profession I would never wish on an enemy. Education in this country is riddled with impractical theory, crippled by No Child Left Behind, and in tatters because of a general decline in curiosity. I have ZERO regrets about quitting that entire profession. Teachers are some of the most miserable, depressing people I’ve had to tolerate. Whenever they come into the club, the first topic out of their mouths is negativity about work. UGH! My life has way less drama now that I’m a stripper.

Anyway, in summary, I became an exotic dancer for three reasons: 1) I hate most “good” jobs, 2) I wanted to get some financial gain out of all the years of dedication to becoming a dancer, and 3) I enjoy entertaining and meeting people. It was an obvious choice for me. Other people will have something else to offer, but that’s my story.

Author: Devon Hunter

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  1. you do digress – but you’re a great writer… every thought of that as a sideline profession? novelist?
    Hmm, maybe can’t sit still that long?
    I was going to be writer, but never diverted from the track I was on long enough, so here I am.
    Good for you mate – life is best doing what you are passionate about.

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  2. That’s cool. Sounds like you’ve had quite an interesting life, as far as your work career is concerned. I agree with you about the diverse range of people that become strippers. I’m friends with quite a few and no two stories are the same, and most of them are actually really great guys (there are exceptions of course but eh). A pity you don’t come down to Key West to perform!

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  3. yeah, there are good and bad people in any group, of course. most of the adult entertainers i know are just regular people with regular interests. i know a few walking stereotypes, but thankfully they are the minority… key west??? hm… i’d consider that 🙂

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  4. Thank you for the explanation on how you got started. It sounds like you have already had an interesting life. I don’t blame you for quitting teaching. I have not heard many great stories about the US public education system. Underpaid teachers, inadequate funding and undermotivated students.

    My partner is a very good dancer (not uncommon among Filipinos) and is always watching the reality TV dance shows. His favourite is America’s Best Dance Crew. I must admit the athleticism and creativity are impressive.

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  5. I did not see any Tap lessons. I started in a year I will never admit to. From a blue collar construction family, and in 2nd grade your 1st born comes home and says I want to take Jazz lessons. Mom responded you will take Tap. Jazz is a Fad. yeah right Mon, I got those lessons. The only Male dancer in a small town studio is a bit of a star(oh and that would freak me out). My 1st job was student teaching for a dollar an hour, until I started having students as for me to teach them. I loved it. But I went to school and got a degree that would mean I would always have a job. Accounting, I don’t hate that I HATE CORP. AMER.
    With a Passion. So while dealing with my illness, and midlife crisis I look back, not in regret but I should have taken that other path I was so good at, and the training was right down the street, Becoming a Master Diamond Setter.

    Oh all the relatives had me going to Broadway. Just two problems, I can’t act (I can when I have to) and I can’t sing.(no hope for that)

    I don’t regret not going for my degree in dance, I don’t regret getting two degrees, Accounting and Management.
    I have a nice side business, that is word of mouth, I decide if I am going to take the client on, and I love love doing.

    I am a Tax Accountant for self employed peeps, which means I am their accountant also, this has rolled into a bit of a business manger role with a few of my clients. (would love to talk to you about the placement of your pictures in your ad I think we can make it POP)

    I too took some Ballet, mostly for form and technique. But that graceful hell no.

    Dallas TX

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