Friday, April 30, 2010

China One outright discrimination against transgender Marla Bendini.

This needs circulation: China One club in the Clarke Quay area is another fucked-up institution.

Marla is an artist and pole-dancing performer who happens also to be a transwoman. China One had engaged her dance troupe for a gig, but mid-way through preparations, Marla was asked to leave the establishment without reason. Upon further query, the General Manager, who ordered her removal, claimed that she should know the reason for her removal. It harks back to a prior episode where she was asked to leave the club because her being trans is "is simply not their THING".

Well, China One, you're a fucking douche, and you should know why. We hope this gives you PR hell because it is simply not our thing otherwise.

And oh, by the way, FUCK. YOU.

Feel free to send love letters to them, and to save you the trouble of visiting their website:

China One
Block 3E River Valley Road
#02-01 Clarke Quay
Singapore 179024

Tel: +65-6339 0280

Marla's letter I reproduce in full:
29 Apr 2010 at 03:30
April 29, 2010

Acro Poleformers from Acro Polates, the pole fitness studio I train at, are performing at ChinaOne this evening. I was there with other performers as well as the studio director, Suzie Wong, and award-winning Pole Dance performer and instructor from Australia, Suzie Q. Things were going as planned and the performers did a great job during the 1st half of the performance.

Just before the 2nd half of the performance started, a bouncer came up to me and said that the manager wants to speak to me and wanted me to follow him outside the club. I obliged, even though the manager should come over and speak to me personally instead of having me escorted outside at his beck and call. I waited outside for a few minutes. but the said manager did not show up so I walked back into the club, even though the bouncer tried to stop me and said that I'm not allowed to enter.

When I was inside, I told that Suzie Wong and the performers that the club management wants me to leave and that I am not welcomed in the club. Suzie Wong explained to them that I am part of the group invited and we are here to support the performance. The bouncers was adamant that I leave and I am not welcomed. I told them that I do not want to create any trouble and I will wait outside.

I was greeted with a heated argument between the club managers upon stepping out. As it turns out, the manager was Lawrence (See story below). He was yelling at his colleagues and staff who "let her (Me) in". They explained to him that I was part of the guestlist and he was hissing with anger that no one informed him that they were letting guests in without his acknowledgment. I guess if he held all that power to who enters and who leaves, he should be working as a bouncer or a door host, not sit in his office counting his paycheck. So all this yelling and argument happened right in front of the club entrance, I was standing there and Suzie Wong came out soon after to see how I was doing. Lawrence, the GM, turned to me and started yelling at me saying that I should not step into ChinaOne again and he has told me so before. I asked why is he yelling. Suzie stepped in at this point and said she would not proceed on with the show because this is disrespectful. Finally, we agreed that this was between the management and I left the club to wait for them to finish the pole dance performance. The girls came down soon after and were noticeably upset about the situation.

I am very thankful and touched that my friends stood up for me. Even Suzie Wong, who was running a business, was prepared to give up this gig because of the way the management treated me due to my gender.

I love you girls- Suzie W, Suzie Q, Eunice, Karen & Kat and the rest of the girls who left earlier after the 1st half of the show.


September 4, 2009

I don't go to ChinaOne anymore because the management approached my transsexual friend while I was getting drinks at the bar. They told her to ask me to leave. They had no idea she was a transsexual as well. When I asked why, they were reluctant to give the reason. I asked to see the manager because none of the bouncers knew how to handle the situation because they were just acting on orders.

The General Manager, Lawrence, finally came out and said "I should know it myself."
He was rude and indignant as if I've done something shameful. I was not about to be pulled out of a club like that and have people trample all over me. I asked again why I should be asked to leave the club without a valid reason. Lawrence, the GM, replied again that he does not want to get into this and I should know the reason why. He was shifty and was almost hissing at me.

He wanted to check my ID, and again, I said if they gave me a reason, I would gladly give them my ID. He continued to evade my question and said "I should know why". I refused to leave without a valid reason- I've been there on many occasions and it is simply ridiculous to ask me to leave like so.

Finally, Lawrence (GM) gave up and said "OK, Not everybody knows you're a man."
To which, I promptly replied, "So what's the problem here?"
He said "This is simply not their THING"

I questioned their establishment- I am here to drink and enjoy myself, whatever ''THING"' ChinaOne is into seems to venture more than just a pub/club scene. I demanded a full refund of me and my friend's expenditure that night and left.

He finally apologised and said it is not his policy but the upper management. I said he is the General Manager and he should respect us and make changes to this 'unwritten' rule.

So here's to clubs and bars who think they can just discriminate transgenders on the premise that they are trying to run a 'respectable business'- we are fabulous and consider it an honour we fancy your club and choose to take our gorgeousness there.
Marla, we at the barn stand with you, and thank you again for shedding light on another disgusting establishment.

Please join Leona Lo and others in taking a stand against these flagrant (and subtle) discriminations against transgender people. Join the Facebook group and let's get organised!


  1. Thanks for spreading the word-- wrote them a love letter. ;)

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  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. However i tot in the world only have male and female. so how does we address you or just a (HeShe) or (LadyBoyyyyy) Or Hokkian call (Ah Gua)
    Just wondering no offen pls update us...

    Shame on Yr Grand 18 Parent....


  5. Putting aside the obviously rude moniker, contrary to popular belief, SuckMyCock, the world has more than just your idea of male and female. The other genders just do not get as much popular representation. I'm not sure what's there to "address" here other than your accepting that there're different people here, some of whom are transgendered, who despite whatever reason--theirs to know, not yours frankly--are who they are, deserve no less respect and fair treatment.

    This blog is not entertaining anymore inquiries or comments about trans people's gender performance. It's really not any of your business.

  6. The KWLC is probably Lawrence in disguise lor.


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