The Daily Mail has a thought-provoking article today: Now opera gets sexy: Singer who stripped down to a leopard-print leotard says performers SHOULD embrace their sexuality (just not 'desperate' Miley Cyrus) by Leon Watson.
The opera performer Danielle de Niese who is appearing in Francesco Cavalli's bawdy opera La Calisto at the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich, Germany, explains that her appearance in La Calisto is different from a performance like Miley’s.
“She claimed she only strips down when she has 'artistic integrity.'
Cyrus, she says, is trying to 'break free from her previous image.’”
de Niese explains that she believes there is a difference to sexually charged performances that have to do with the purpose of the performance.
I agree heartily with the idea that it is important for women to embrace their sexuality and their own sexual identity. The purpose for performing in a sexual way or stripping down on stage can make the difference between something being seen as crass and desperate or beautiful and meaningful.
Of course, it is hard to read a person’s mind when they are performing. Yes, we might say Miley Cyrus’ performances seem to have to do with creating a new image, but who are we to say that is wrong?
Yes, it all may be a carefully crafted marketing strategy, but how do we know if she feels sexually liberated? Only the person behind the performance can really know if what they are doing has integrity or not.
I believe an opera singer and a pop singer may have artistic integrity in their sexually alive performances.
I find myself deeply exploring the idea of my own expressed-sexuality lately. After many years of turning my back on my stripper/nude model former self, I find myself wanting to return to the roots of that identity that really were supportive and empowering. I have focused so much on the negatives of stripping, I feel myself wanting to reconnect to myself as a “performer” and what that really means to me.
Who decides what is appropriate representation versus negative for each of us? I can only answer to my own thoughts about what is integrity-filled for me today.
I want to explore that performer part of myself again, but on my own terms this time.