It’s getting to the pointy end!

The results are in for the APDM Top 50 for 2018/19! This is a list of the Top 50 most influential people in the Australian pole community for 2018 as voted by you.

Our aim with this list is to create a platform which allows you to show your appreciation for members of the community who have influenced you in some way. Be it through opening/running a studio, putting on a pole competition, coaching you, creating wonderful and inspiring costumes, taking beautiful images, being an inspirational performer, or even being the friendly receptionist always ready to help. So many people are making amazing contributions to our local community!

For this reason you may not know all of our Top 50, but rest assured they are doing great things in their corner of the country, and have touched many people with their work. We are proud to give you this opportunity to show them how much people appreciate their tireless efforts.

While we were flooded with votes we also know that not everyone will agree with the results. With so many contributors in the Australian pole community it is impossible to pay tribute to them all! Many small business owners, studio owners, event organisers, photographers, performers and teachers will not feature in this years Top 50 although almost 500 people received votes.

We will be revealing the Top 50 in parts, ten people at a time. Here is the second instalment.


20. Caroline Cazcapstar


Caroline Cazcapstar is no stranger to the comp scene in Australia! She is a pole instructor at Pole Divas and qualified personal trainer and stretch coach! In 2018 she placed 1stat Floorplay Sydney, performed in the opening for Miss Pole Dance Australia, Performed at Dance for a Difference, judged and did a guest show for Sexy’s Back and judged Dance Filthy Amateur. She also hosted a number of signature floor, dance and tricks workshops locally and interstate. Caroline was diagnosed with MS at the end of 2017 and is determined to prove that it won’t stop her from doing what she loves.


19. Joanna Littlewood-Johnson


Joanna had a massive year as she contributed heavily to the Aussie pole community. Owner, manager, head instructor and coach at Core Fusion Pilates & Pole in Perth, in 2018 Joanna rad the WA Pole Championships, judged FCAPC, and performed at Dance for a Difference, Pole-a-Palooza and the Perth Fringe Festival. She was awarded the Pole Fit Champion at IPC (Masters Division) and 2nd Runner Up at MPDWA. She immortalised her story of competing in the Semi Finals of Australias Got Talent for the first ever pole history book “A Brief History of Australian Pole Dance”. She also was chosen as a core member of the teaching team for Aussie pole tutorial platform PoleSphere.


18. Andrea James Lui


Andrea James Lui is a full- time instructor and coach. She coaches polers of all levels and all around the world. Some of her students have gone on to win sashies in competitions such as Mr Pole Dance, Aerial Rising Stars, Miss Pole Dance Austria and North American Pole Championships. She teaches pole, hoop, fly gym, stretch and dance at Blackbird and Aerial Fit and is part of the elite team of teachers online at PoleSphere. In 2018 AJL performed at a number of events including Felix Cane Pole Championships, Encore, Miss Pole Dance Victoria closing show, Blackbirds interactive studio show House of Horrors and a number of short film dance collabs!


17. Coco


Coco is the founder and owner of Love Pole located in Panania, Sydney and teaches around 13 class and 8 privates every week. Aside from the busy task of running a studio, Coco is also the founder an organiser of ‘Podium Goddess’ which ran for the second time last year. 2018 saw her compete in several competitions herself including Miss Pole Dance NSW, Pole Classic in Las Vegas where she placed 3rdin the Women’s division and Miss Pole Dance Australia where she place 3rd. She judged Pole Candy, Risque’, Royalty and Polation. On top of all of this she is also a Gecko of Creatures of XIX!


16. Emma Salmon


Emma Salmon, aka The Black Light  loves to encourage the edgier, sexier side of her models during their shoots together. Doing a Black Light shoot is basically on every pole dancers bucket list, and if it’s not – well it should be! In 2018 Emma shot over 700 polers, both in studio shoots as well as in hotel rooms, location and beach shoots, as well as her signature UV shoots. She published The Black Light coffee table book, as well as featured several of her images in “A Brief History of Australian Pole Dance”. She debuted the first Victoria’s Secret shoot for polers in conjunction with Clique Styling, featured in NUDE and Penthouse mags, and also shot the 2018 calendar for Penthouse!


15. Michelle Shimmy


Alongside her sister Maddie Sparkle, Michelle Shimmy is one of the most active, vocal and inspirational members of the Aussie pole community. Shimmy is as passionate about the pole community as she is about supporting women, and her feminist perspective is always thought-provoking and eye-opening for her followers. 2018 was, as usual, a whirlwind year for her, as she wrangled an avalanche of commitments with PDA, her numerous competitions (Dance Filthy and Pole Theatre both having a swag of international franchises), MCing and guest performing at many of them (including with her partner George at Dance Filthy which was a highlight of the year for her – and many others! She  also contributed the story of how she created Sunday Bumday to the first every pole history book “A Brief History of Australian Pole Dance”, opened a new PDA in Manly and even started the Pole News videos with Chilli, which we hope to see return in 2019!


14. Maddie Sparkle


Co-owner of Pole Dance Academy in Sydney, Maddie teaches, coaches, competes, and creates prolifically for the pole community. Alongside sister Michelle Shimmy and co-producer Leisha Perry she runs Pole Theatre, Dance Filthy, Step Up and Pole Club, as well as the PDA Summer Pole Camp. She also creates online pole dance tutorials and owns Shimmy and Sparkle activewear line, and tells me her current favorite thing is the Ibiza bodysuit. She guest performed at many events both nationally and internationally, as well as judged numerous pole competitions. She also featured heavily in the first ever pole history book “A Brief History of Australian Pole Dance”. She loves her students at PDA dearly and enjoys following their progress, and she tells me that her love for teaching and pole is stronger than ever!


13. Olivia Oates


Olivia Oates is well-known for her presence on Instagram doing handstands by the pool with her pup pal, Oscar, by her side. She is also a very talented pole dancer and has taken out many titles over the years! 2018 was no different, she won first place at Miss Pole Dance SA and got the Shoe Me sponsors choice award at Miss Pole Dance Australia and became a Shoe Me ambassador. She is a spokeswoman for Indi Pole Wear and taught at the Indi Pole Wear retreat in Bali. Olivia even travelled all the way to Egypt to teach at Pole Fit Egypt! When she’s not pole dancing, she can be found, camera in hand, taking snaps of pole dancers! Was the head photographer for The Pole Boutiques competition “Slay it”.


12. Natty Stephens


Natty is known for her unique movements and precise choreography and musicality. 2018 saw her perform at several different events including Miss Pole Dance Australia, Survivor and Mr Pole Dance and win multiple titles including 2ndplace at the Arnolds PCS, 1stplace at Victorian Pole Championships, 3rdplace at Miss Pole Dance Victoria and 2ndplace at Australian Pole Championships. She also judged a number of competitions including Survivor, Mr Pole Dance and Ignite. Natty taught a number of workshops around Victoria and the Gold Coast as well as on the East Coast Pole Cruise. To top off a busy year she became a brand ambassador for Toes On Pointe!

11. Felix Cane


One of the best known polers of all time both nationally and internationally, Felix doesn’t rest of her large volume of prior achievements. Owner and founder of the Felix Cane Pole Academy, founder of FCPC and FCAPC in Perth, in 2018 Felix travelled Australia and the world holding workshops, judging competitions and guest performing. She also immortalised the story of how she created the Spatchcock in the first ever pole history book “A Brief History of Australian Pole Dance”. She birthed Pole-a-Palooza, a pole showcase event, and became a Dame of Miss Pole Dance Australia for being the first and only person in history to win MPDA three times, and consecutively. How lucky are we to have this icon of pole dance history living in our country?