Introducing Stadium Club, the District’s first foray into the world of upscale stripping. What turns a regular old strip club into a classy strip club? If Stadium Club’s Web site is any indication, true class can be achieved by offering an array of bizarre amenities in addition to the requisite naked women. And so, when it opens in Ward 5 later this month, the strip club will offer “fine cigars,” “complimentary limousine pick-up and drop-off” for VIP members, a valet by the name of Elvis, and the promise to accommodate “the best of all the patrons’ wishes and demands.”
But what do the dancers—-dubbed “Stadium Girls”—-get out of the classy stripping experience? The privilege of removing their clothing in front of “eye pleasing backgrounds.” From the site:
Upon your first visit you will note the attention to the detail at every turn; whether it is the lights; the rich wood tones that are contrasted by soft pastel colors of pink, green and grey to provide eye pleasing backgrounds for both the patron and the dancer; the combination of stone and leather which provide texture and warmth; or how all of these aspects are rounded off by brushed steel and glass, you will understand that this clearly upscale venue is a one of a kind.
I’ve scoured the Stadium Club Web site, and the aforementioned background preparation is the sole indication that Stadium Club has the safety and comfort of its dancers in mind. Strippers must sure love walls! Or do they? I asked a local woman with about a year of stripping experience for her analysis of this particular feature.
“I have NO idea what the lighting or the eye-pleasing background shit is about,” she writes. “I can tell you, not only do the dancers not care about that, but the patrons don’t either. The patrons want: 1) Naked girls; 2) To be able to harass/sexually assault those girls to their hearts’ content. That’s it.”
“OK, they maybe also want to be able to get drunk,” she adds. “But like . . . brushed steel and glass? Have you ever been to a strip club? It is DARK in there. The only well-lit places are the stage and the bar. Guys don’t want to be able to see the goddamn brushed steel, because that would mean someone could see them. And they want it to be as dark as possible so that they can ogle and grope to their hearts’ content—-and not have anyone say ‘Hey, isn’t that my congressman?'”
Instead of comforting its dancers with shades of soft pastel, our expert suggests Stadium Club focus on ensuring the safety of its employees. “As for the dancers, what they want is to make a lot of money and preferably not get raped. Or jerked off on. . . . The biggest thing a club can do to ensure the happiness of its dancers is to enforce the laws about not touching them,” she writes. “I guess it’s better to work at a classy strip club than a non-classy one? If that’s even a distinction that exists? But again, I think that distinction would be most evident in how the dancers are treated, by the club and by its patrons (and, of course, the former has a nontrivial amount of control over the latter).”