Dancer baffles, amuses with bizarre city council performance

Dancer Sara Juli climbs on a man and pretends to vomit during her dance performance at a Portland City Council meeting in Maine. Screenshot: WGME-TV

March 8 (UPI) — A city council meeting in Maine took a bizarre turn when a dancer invited to perform in the chamber climbed on a man and pretended to vomit.

The Portland City Council hosted dancer Sara Juli during its Monday night meeting as part of Mayor Ethan Strimling’s “Arts in the Chamber” series, which previously brought musicians, actors, and poets to city council meetings for brief performances.

Juli’s performance proved to be unique, as it included her climbing on Robert Bartels, 36, who was at the meeting to be appointed to the Zoning Board of Appeals.

“I knew when her eyes met mine that she was all about freaking the mundanes,” Bartels told the Portland Press Herald. “I think it worked.”

Juli climbed on Bartels and pretended to vomit.

“I was hoping the whole time that it was going to remain an act and she wasn’t going to really throw up on me,” he said.

Juli, whose four-and-a-half-minute performance also included her asking, “Have you ever tried so hard to do something that it paralyzed you,” and ending with a loud scream, said the dance was meant to be humorous.

“Art doesn’t have to be serious. It can be funny and thought provoking at the same time,” she said. “I like playing with those two worlds and that divide.”

Bartels said his encounter with the dancer didn’t end at the meeting — he ran into her that same evening while shopping for barbecue sauce.

“Lo and behold it was the dancer,” he said. “I didn’t know what to say. I said hey, ‘I’m the guy!’ We had a good laugh about it in Trader Joe’s.”

Mayor Ethan Strimling said he thought Juli’s performance was great.


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