Saturday, December 1, 2007

Diane Lane Fan Dance



I don't post video clips often because they seem to get deleted from youtube soon afterward, but I can't resist this one! I use this in my "Exotic Dance in Contemporary Film" presentation, and this is the first time I've found it online. As you can see if you look at the video's youtube page, none of the tags are "burlesque;" sometimes I have to be very specific to find the video I'm hoping to see.

In my presentation about strip tease on film, I show a lot of clips and talk about how striptease is used to establish characters, develop plots, set the tone for environments, build up or drop viewer expectations, and so on, and what it reflects about our culture that such scenes can have those effects. For performers, I discuss how, in burlesque loops of actual performers from the mid-twentieth century, it can be difficult to tell how the performers were utilising the music; due to music rights concerns, the music on the clips is often dubbed over. Also, viewers rarely get a sense of how the dancers might have interacted with their audiences. Sometimes in a clip from a commercial film like The Big Town, you get a clearer sense of mood and environment. This clip is from a movie made in 1986/7--not so very far from the mid-twentieth century--and when I watch it I wonder if Ms. Lane was coached by an actual fandancer from the 40s or 50s. If anybody knows, fill me in!

As a former strip joint stripper, my favorite part is when she kicks the beer into the audience member's lap. That, I feel free to assure you, is authentic.

I'll be giving my presentation on exotic dance in film December 30, so if you're in New York, you can check it out! The details are at http://www.schoolofburlesque.com.

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