Of his own admission, Davey Hughes, at 37, is the old man of the group. He's been with the current crop of Sydney's Hotshots the longest and he's also the host on stage. And he gets his gear off at the end. Well, much of it apparently.
Their website says: "Sydney Hotshots are renowned nationwide for their high-energy routines, spectacular six-packs, their audience attention and the screaming ladies that pack out every show." And the promise: "The audience will enjoy a memorable range of entertainment during the two-hour show, including a variety of games and competitions, plus some up-close-and-personal attention on stage with the boys!"
Davey has performed all over the world, including a 10-year stint as a dancer in Las Vegas. He still dances and his job on stage now is essentially to maintain continuity and banter while the boys change costumes backstage.
Their current show Magic Mike XXL: Ladies' Night Experience is at Canley Heights RSL this Saturday.
Women have had a time of it, being objectified in art, in media, movies, fashion and even in ordinary conversation. Hotshots is a real switch -- you're intentionally objectifying the male body and women are coming in droves. Is this in some small way redressing the imbalance, do you reckon? Is it about time men were objectified and women got their own back? The Sydney Hotshots are hand-picked guys from all over the world who are based in Sydney. The guys we pick have no problem taking their clothes off for the ladies. Having said that they're not egotistical show-off jerks, they're fair-dinkum good blokes who take pride in their appearance and don't mind showing it off in a cool entertaining way which is what makes the girls love the show and have fun and not feel uncomfortable. Al the girls who come to the show on the night will feel relaxed and have a good perv, a good laugh and an amazing time. This is what makes Sydney's Hotshots the No.1 ladies' night, and the most fun, and a chance for the girls to treat the guys like objects for a change, and we are more than happy with that! [laughs]
You guys have the most amazing bodies -- how intimidating is that for all the husbands who stay home when their wives, partners, girlfriends go to your show? True, our guys are all in tip-top shape but they're down to earth so most punters usually don't have any issues with us. But we're always sure not to rub it in. In the 20 years we've been doing shows there have only been just a very few crazy husbands who were trying to attack us.
How many women bring their partners? Sometimes guys bring their wives. Some guys like to watch their girl have a good time, or maybe they're keeping an eye on them, I'm not sure, but I do wonder sometimes! [laughs] I think maybe a bit of both.
It's presented as a fun, even raunchy, night out -- how raunchy do you actually get? The show is done very cleverly, meaning that the girls will see just enough. I'll leave it at that. But I will just say we never get any complaints.
Tell us about the walk-outs, there must have been one or two? No real walk-outs. Well, maybe some of the girls get upset if they don't get pulled up onto the stage! But we include a lot of our audience in the show so if you don't get called up onto the stage don't worry, we'll come to you at some point in our two-hour show!. Some girls want to come on stage and some are terrified to come up. They're the funny ones. [laughs]
On your website you're billed as strippers -- how much do you actually take off? We are strippers at the end of the day but we like to say "male entertainers" because it sounds less sleazy. But, yes, we take off all our clothes for our living so call it what you want! [laughs]
Nothing in showbusiness ever works 100 per cent all the time. Tell us about some of the wardrobe malfunctions you've experienced on stage? So many malfunctions! Normally our junk falling out at the wrong time. [laughs] Or an embarrassing trip or fall out of sheer excitement. But we're the best at making mistakes like this look like they're a part of the show. All male entertainers are good at that! [laughs]
How welcoming is the show for LGBTQ audiences? Would gay guys feel shy in an atmosphere which is, let's face it, pretty hetero-charged? Do any of the Hotshots identify as gay? No one in our show is gay. I don't think there are any gay male strippers in Sydney, not in our crew anyway. But, yes, we do get gay guys at our show. They never look uncomfortable. They seem to fit right in with the girls. They might criticise our dancing [laughs] but they always have a good time.
What funny or possibly unexpected things have happened during performances? The funniest thing is when I can get the really cute older ladies, like 85, very cute, very sober, up on stage and they really just go for it. I guess maybe they think it's one of the last few times they're going to be able to grab some young stuff so a lot of them just go for it, which is so funny!
Tell us about yourself and your career. I'm the host of the show. I've performed all over the world touring and I lived and performed in Las Vegas for over 10 years in my 20s when I was a dancer. I'm the oldest now, at 37. I host the show and keep the ladies entertained while the boys do costume changes . . . and maybe I take it off at the end [laughs]. Come check out our brand new show, the Magic Mike XXL: Ladies' Night Experience, for the best ladies' night out you'll ever experience.
- At Canley Heights RSL this Saturday at 8.30pm.