Oprah Winfrey put hula hoopers in a spin this week when she stirred up hoopla because one of her producers asked a performer to spin a plastic tube around her waist outside Oprah’s “Live the Life You Want Weekend” arena tour, free of charge, because all she would be doing is swinging a hula hoop around in circles repeatedly.
Revolva, a hula hooper from the Bay area, wrote a letter to Winfrey criticizing her and Harpo Studios for insulting her by not offering to pay her.
“As a performer, writer and activist, I’ve spent 12 years taking a million chances, attempting to live in alignment with my spirit, rather than our toxic culture. I’ve spoken up as a survivor,” she writes.
Revolva said that a producer approached her about performing, but clarified that she would not be paid to be there.
Here is a quote from her paraphrased phone call with the producer:
“Okay, so just to be clear, you’d be on a stage outside the event. And, you know, just to be clear, Oprah will not be on that stage. Oh, and just to be clear, this gig isn’t paid.”
This angered and insulted the hula hooper, because tickets for the event range from $99 to $999.
“As I was choking on my own tongue (stroke!), your producer also mentioned there was the added bonus of a ticket to the event. Unfortunately, her call coming just four days before your San Jose stop, I didn’t have the whole weekend free. I also texted my landlord, and it turns out he does not accept rent payment in Oprah Winfrey tickets. Gah!”
See Revolva’s work below.