Arts & Entertainment

Too raw for some, but delicious authenticity nonetheless

Glitter Supernova. Source: supplied


 Barbarella Karpinski

Glitta Supernova is a subcultural starlet, a nude counterculture contemporary Phyllis Diller.

Performers like Glitta Supernova never make the cut on Dancing with the Stars, and even if Dreamgirls at the Cross had not been closed down – her tattoos, voluptuous shape and age, over forty, make her unemployable in the straight stripper world.

Even finding a venue to perform “MetaPHYSICAL”, was a battle. Apparently the Fringe festival circuit asked her to censor her content and stop flashing her self-described “chubby cunt”.

Because Glitta does not do the usual representation of the sex industry – confess, cry and find god or the cops to rescue her, many theatres refused to have her perform there, so she settled on Giant Dwarf theatre, now run by the Chaser team.  But the queer audience on Friday loved her. They couldn’t get enough.
A one woman autobiographical show of a striptease artist is destined to be confronting. It doesn’t have to be though. If only she took the advice of other theatres and left out the naked bits. And if Glitta was thinner, younger or perhaps regretted her time in the sex industry, she may even be able to make it onto mainstream television. There is a formula for mainstream acceptance. She could have been one of the “talent” telling of their path to recovery and/or redemption. Last week, my dinner was ruined by watching a 60 minutes episode about a twenty-something woman – a victim of pimpology, forced to go on shopping trips for shoes, being made to strip for ‘strangers’ at clubs in Las Vegas.

Clearly Supernova’s embrace of her ten years in the sex industry and even her unusual childhood on nude beaches with a somewhat narcissistic mother determined to have an all over tan, was embraced. Undoubtedly, the sex industry, is not for everyone, the media is full of stories of those who hated their jobs. But it seemed that Supernova was suited to a flourishing career in sexuality and her performance was like a demented subterranean sex comedy.

A second generation nudist, with a mother from hippie land, who rarely wore more than a sarong, Glitta has embraced her past and is refreshingly self-depreciating. It’s always good if you can get in first. Why leave it up to the judges on talent shows to put you down? Glitta even puts a bucket on her head so the audience can have a good look at an aging middle aged spread. She seemed in pretty good shape to me. Must be those stripper moves. Wow, that confounds the stereotype of strip being the path to ruin. It seems that this positive experience could be ubiquitous.

But although Supernova displays a penchant for bling, sequins and silk, the production isn’t sophisticated technically. There is just a small screen showing home-made porn spoofs to “working girl” soundtracks, with pathos in the music like Private Dancer. As the blue lady smurf jerks around, the Tina Turner’s song bleeds for sympathy:  “All the men come in these places, and the men are all the same, you don’t look at their faces…You keep your mind on the money.” The juxtaposition brings out the comedy.

Glitta’s experience of working in strip clubs was upbeat. Similarly, when I was working at Club Eros, prior to being fired for playing Nina Hagen and dressing in bondage gear, I used to regard these shows a lunchtime workout, the only difference being that lots of people gawk at you while eating their complementary pizza with beer, which is only slightly different to the gym, where gym bunnies gulp energy drinks and gaze only at their own beauty in the mirror.

The mock audition for Dancing with the Stars brought home that a girl like Glitta, curvy and mouthy, could never transition from the subculture to the mainstream music sausage factory of skinny subservient bodies, dirty secrets and skeletons in the closet, waiting to be the next embarrassing article in the shiny mags, so that your fall from grace is as mighty as your rise.

Those like Glitta, are routinely derided on these type of shows as it’s all about reinventing a ‘star’, which usually turns out to be a tragic trajectory just as Marilyn Munro and Judy Garland were just worker bees – the big Hollywood studios in charge of their drugs and destiny.

And modern day singing starlets like Ricky-Lee are welcomed only until they put on a few kilos or a long lost relative does jail time. Its gossip fodder in this harsh commercial world where you have darlings, divas and devils.

Glitta is a subcultural star but the show was done on a shoestring, the props are thrift store, the bling is $2 shop. It is powerful nonetheless

But just warning you that her show is the real deal and you might just get an eye full of self-described ‘chubby cunt’ and some meat attached as a fake labia may gross you out. She is making a point about the vaginal beauty industry.

Or could this be Glitta’s way of rebelling against her vegan and batik mung bean childhood on the north coast?


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