The Pole Championship Series is a little over one week away. Let’s meet another one of the talented competitors, Sasja Lee, leading up to the big day!
How did you first discover pole dancing? What drew you to it?
I first discovered pole dancing through a friend, who dragged me with her to a class thinking it would be a fun new workout for us to try. I was immediately taken aback by the teeny tiny outfits and high heels. But after one class, I was hooked.
Where do you train?
I train at The Choreography House in North Hollywood, Ca.
Are you an instructor as well? If so, where do you teach?
I am an instructor at The Choreography House, Evolve Dance Studio, and The Secret Pole Dance Studio.
You qualified for the PCS at The California Pole Championships. What was that experience like?
Firstly, competing in California Pole Dance Championship was like no other, thus far. The obstacles I faced, including a car accident 2 days prior, put me in a much more focused state of mind somehow. I felt as though living through that experience catapulted my spirit and made me fight harder for all I’d worked for even with 22 stitches in my face. And that fighting spirit led to this monumental opportunity, that is PCS.
How have you been training for the PCS?
PCS training has been rigorous. I train for hours on end, daily; pushing my body to what feels like its limit, and constantly giving myself pep talks. I jump rope for cardio, stretch and hit the floor, running my passes with my choreographer, Kelly Yvonne. Eat, sleep, rinse and repeat.
You are a cast member in “Girl Next Door: A Pole Dance Soiree.” What has that experience been like?
Being a cast member in Girl Next Door: A Pole Dance Soiree has been the ultimate pole family experience. I get to bond and grow with these women. It has become an outlet for me to express personal sorrows as well as triumphs in a supportive setting. Every single time I’m on that particular stage, I go back to when I first received the email about making the cast, and I still can’t believe I get to be there.
Who are your biggest influences?
My biggest influences begin with the women in my family. They are very strong willed and creative.
Dance is very personal, therefore, no two dancers can be the same. I would say it’s more of an appreciation than an influence. Some of the dancers I’ve gained much appreciation for are those who live through movement with great passion, and show strength, fluidity, emotion, control and power all in one routine. You can tell their movement is genuine. Natasha Wang, Phoenix Kazree, Nadia Shariff, Sergia Louise Anderson to name a few.
What is your favorite pole move of the moment?
I don’t have one favorite pole move in particular, just many in general.
What about a favorite song?
I live in the moment. I’m a true Gemini. So, with my mood changes come songs that appeal to me in that moment, depending on what I’m going through.
The Winter Olympics are happening in Sochi now. Do you think pole dancing should be added as an Olympic event?
I think including pole dancing as an Olympic event would reach those who are unfamiliar with exactly what it is on a broader level. And wouldn’t that be fabulous? As long as the dance aspect isn’t lost in translation, I’m all for it.
Pole dancing will be included for the first time at The Arnold Sports Festival. How does it feel to be part of such a groundbreaking event?
It is still quite surreal to me that I am going to be a part of such a movement for both personal and collective reasons. I am so proud, and hope to represent the art I’ve come to love to the best of my ability.