A stage name is a fun way to bring out your alter ego and bring pizzazz and a little mystery to your performance. Some stage names are created by the owner and some are given by others. As for me, I’ve been called several names (some I won’t mention) but the one that stuck was Blaze. The name Blaze was given to me by fellow coworkers well before my career in the fire arts. I had a passion for hair color and for several years in my 20s had a hair style that involved sharp shades of red and blond that reminded my friends of an open flame. This nickname followed me for years, so when Lauren and I started the troupe it seemed only appropriate that Blaze be the name I would use.
We wanted the troupe to have a circus-like feel and felt that nicknames would add to the character of the performance. We sat down one day with Tommy and David (two of Dante’s original members) and picked out the name for the troupe as well as ourselves, so that Lauren could create the website and documents to get us started and make us an official group. I believe that stage names are a fun way to add ambiance to the stage and create a well-rounded fantasy and show for the viewers. Besides that— “Lady Blaze the fire eating belly dancer” has a much better ring than “Andrea the fire eating belly dancer!” ~Ladi Blaze
There are those who call me…Dex.
I think a stage name allows you to express a part of yourself that may not be seen or shown in day-to-day life and that’s why I use one. It reminds me of actors in the theater: they’re on stage as characters, not themselves.
Speaking of theater, that’s where my stage name came from. In high school, instead of Danielle people would call me D or Lil’ D. In one particular play I had to wear a spandex body suit. My best friend, Eric, thought that was quite comical and started calling me “Spandex” which he shortened to “Dex.”
When it came time to choose my stage name for Dante’s I thought back on those times and it made me smile. Eric passed away several years ago and I chose Dex in homage to him. ~ Dex
I chose a stage name to create a feeling that my dance persona was exotic and from a far-away place. I found the name Azara (usually pronounced Ashara) on a website listing Arabic, Farsi, and Turkish names and their meanings. Azara means fire in Farsi; I chose this because I wanted to dance with fire. I had also decided to use Azara with the z sound to make it somewhat American since I was performing an American version of a Middle Eastern art. The name never stuck, but years later I have a baby boy and have named him Asher, which is a name that originates in the Middle East and sounds similar to the stage name I choose years ago. ~ Megan
This topic came up because a friend of mine recently asked me personally for advice on how to choose a name. Mine was easy, since it’s my birth name; I especially feel close to it because of the reference to our sun, that glorious star of fire.
I asked my friend, Lauren (of Circus Mojo and Nocturnal Arts) what has inspired her to search for a name. “Well, I’ve been considering it for a little while now, not only as a mechanism to stand out that makes me more easily remembered, but also to create more of an alter ego persona that I feel like will help me more easily adapt characteristics of the characters I want to portray when I perform,” Lauren said. “Because although I’m always me, there isn’t a library, doctor’s office or even address with whom I don’t share the exact same name.”
I thank Lauren for inspiring this as a topic of conversation! As you read this, what are your thoughts on having a stage name? Pros? Cons? How did you find yours? Comment away…