Po’ Chop is a burlesque artist who is constantly pushing the boundaries of performance and gender norms. She challenges us to create outside the box and define our own lanes. With over a decade of modern dance training which included study at Columbia College Chicago, Po’Chop uses elements of dance, storytelling, and striptease to create performances that are described by Chicago critics as “…the most provocative symbol of might onstage…It was as if Po’Chop had captured lightning in a bottle and the bottle was herself.” Since debut, Po’chop has become a member of Chicago’s esteemed burlesque troupe, Vaudezilla, and has sizzled across many stages including St. Louis, Charleston, LA, and New York.
When not on the stage, Po’ can be found at Vaudezilla Studios either choreographing and mentoring Vaudezilla’s JV ensemble or empowering students of all identities to celebrate their individuality and sexuality through burlesque. Po’s instruction has been said to be, “quite life changing”. Po’ is currently blazing a trail of victories with the conception and execution of Black as Eye Wanna Be, an hour-long exploration of black feminism and oppression, that was performed as a part of the Chicago Fringe Festival and was Chicago Reader Recommended. Needless to say, Po’Chop is the meat so, sweet even vegetarians want to take a bite.
Read more below as we shine the spotlight on this talented beauty.
Fill in the blank. I’m so talented because:
there is no other option.
When did you know you wanted to be a dancer/burlesque artist?
INSERT CRYING MONTAGE AND FAST FORWARD.
…i knew i wanted to be a burlesque artist the moment someone told me my performances have helped changed their perception of themselves. Po’Chop was created to edify. to redefine beauty and gender norms and to encourage and empower folks of all identities to celebrate who they are in this moment.
What role does Chicago play in your life as an artist?
Chicago has taught me the necessity of darkness. of creating despite feeling stuck or isolated. Chicago has led me to beautiful communities of like minded folks that have impacted my life greatly. Chicago has introduced me to my two great loves. PBR and Rose Freeman. (not listed in any particular order) I’m a homebody, and Chicago is definitely my home.