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Showing posts from January, 2008

Flashback

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'So, if you are tired of being typed out or typecast, the burlesque scene is ready and willing for you to be anything and everything you have always wanted to be. Take your talents, your gimmicks, and your most outrageous and fantastic ideas, and floor 'em at a burlesque revue near you!'

Burlesque Is Alive and Well And Playing in New York
By Raven Snook
Publication: BackStage
Date: Friday, July 27 2001



I'm sooooo happy that burlesque is STILL alive and well seven years later.I am so very, very, very lucky. I have to find it amusing that there are simultaneously so many articles claiming 1) that burlesque is dead or 2) that someone's bringing it back.

Event News: Burlesque on Film and in the Flesh

If I could be in two places at once, I'd be going to this! I was just sent this announcement (lots more details and other films to be shown on the site):

At the
EGYPTIAN THEATRE
6712 Hollywood Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90028
Details
Friday, February 15 -- 7:30 PM LIVE BURLESQUE + SCREENING
LIVE BURLESQUE SHOW (Approx. 45 min.)
The Bonnie Delight Burlesque Revue kicks off the evening with sexy old-fashioned fun starring emcee/funnyman Shecky Greenblatt (Scott Whitesell), sultry dancer Miss Lola Lee, crooner Charlie Singer (Hal Cartrett), a cavalcade of other performers, and the star of our show -- the delightful Bonnie, Miss Bonnie Delight!
Next on the same bill

GYPSY
(1962, Warner Bros., 149 min.). Directed by Mervyn Le Roy.
Natalie Wood lights up the screen as stripper Gypsy Rose Lee in this splendid Jule Styne/Stephen Sondheim/Arthur Laurents musical. The show-stopping Rosalind Russell stars as Wood's domineering stage mother, with Karl Malden as Russell's long-suffe…

Flaming Pasties and More Fire! Fire!

See for yourself!

They'd have fun with Satan's Angel's Fire Tassels.

This article was sent to me by Little Brooklyn.

Interview: The Porcelain Twinz

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The Porcelain Twinz are a spectacular pair of performers. They are not part of the burlesque circuit that is such a big part of my life these days, but they've carved their own niche at the Box. I first saw them on the cover of Penthouse, kneeling gorgeously at the feet of a spike-heeled leather domme, and later doing a hypnotic leg show in the movie "Autofocus." Over time I became particularly interested in them because they were unique, intense, beautiful, creative, and entrepreneurial. They produce their own music and have written their own book, "Our Life in the Sex Industry." When Rose Wood told me they were performing at the The Box with her, I was thrilled to go see them perform and to meet them. They work every element of being twins onstage, using vivid, distinctive choreography and powerful music while they work their incredible mirror image to its best possible advantage. I often hear new performers say that they're going to "bust out of the…

Video Post: Trixie Little and the Evil Hate Monkey

I just found one of my favorite burlesque numbers on youtube!

Book Review: Tassels and Emeralds

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Seattle has some kickass burlesque. Every time I go I see incredible, gorgeous shows full of fantastic ideas, brilliant costumes, and fierce dancing. If you aren't lucky enough to catch the scene, however, know that you are still some good bit of lucky, because in addition to having amazing performers, Seattle has its own amazing chronicler of the Seattle burlesque scene, Chris Blakeley.


A Polaroid of Chris with Babette LaFave, Paula the Swedish Housewife, Miss Indigo Blue, and Tamara the Trapeze Lady.

He's taken thousands of photos at hundreds of shows, and has published is own book, the beautiful and substantial Tassels and Emeralds: A journey through Seattle Burlesque.



It features descriptions and delicious photos of many of the performers I love, including Miss Indigo Blue, Paula the Swedish Housewife, Babette La Fave, Waxie Moon, the astonishing Atomic Bombshells, and the beloved Von Foxies, and too many more spectacular performers to list here. The book leaves no dou…

Picture Post: Tigger!

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Tigger is a fabulous speaker, Shakespearean actor, and a librarian, as well a fre-quent co-conspirator with Julie Atlas Muz. He's also one of the most charismatic and entertaining performers in burlesque, with a clear aesthetic and highly developed numbers. He's a lot of fun to photograph!


Tigger at Coney Island.

Tigger at Starshine Burlesque.

Tigger at the Slipper Room.

Ian Harvie, Me, Margaret Cho, and Tigger Backstage at The Sensuous Woman.

Tigger on MySpace

Interview: Kalani Kokonuts

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There are some people outside of New York that I've met as a result of being involved with Tease-O-Rama and Exotic World that make me particularly grateful for the community of burlesque, and Kalani Kokonuts of Las Vegas is one of them. She is one of the most charming, warm, and gracious people you could ever wish to meet, as well as a spectacular performer and a rather astonishing beauty. When I began this blog she was one of the first people I interviewed, but due to a few unfinished details my post got put off till now.


Kalani Takes the Stage at MEW 2006. Photo by Jo Weldon.

How did you get interested in burlesque?
I was stripping underage in a topless biker bar in Alaska, when I first saw a ''feature entertainer.'' Features are week long acts that are booked to perform about 3-4 shows a night. They usually have centerfold credits or they can be porn actresses. Week after week the club would book different acts. Some were good, some were not so good. It seemed…

News Post: Burlesque Documentary Short

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'Katherine Fries, who graduated from the New York Film Academy, said she'd been looking for a story that touched her heart. "Then I read my mother's book," she said. '
Her documentary was based on mother's burlesque book.


Click above to buy Lillian's Book!

Miss Exotic World Pageant Announced!

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The applications for the Miss Exotic World Pageant are up! Click here to get one.


Gigi La Femme signing in performers at the Miss Exotic World Pageant in Las Vegas.

Click here for a little history of the Pageant.

Click here to see some youtube clips from Exotic World.

If you haven't been to the Burlesque Hall of Fame Striptease reunion that happens the Friday night before the Pageant, when all the legends of burlesque perform, you can't imagine how fierce and wonderful those ladies really are. I've been incredibly lucky to be a part of it!


Tempest Storm, Burlesque Hall of Famer, performing at Exotic World, 2004, in Helendale.

Some Thoughts on Burlesque Costuming

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Costuming plays a unique theatrical role in burlesque. It establishes the character and tone of a piece, but even more interesting to me is that the manner of its removal can dictate the entire choreography of a number. Elements that almost instantly call burlesque to mind, such as feather boas, opera length gloves, and of course pasties, combine in a way to make burlesque costuming distinctive and irresistible to fans of glamour. If you go to Atomic Todd in Las Vegas, you can see many of the amazing costumes from burlesque's golden era, collected by Dixie Evans.

Many burlesque performers really raise the bar when it comes to costuming. Dirty Martini works closely with David Quinn; Bambi the Mermaid and Bunny Love, among others, have elaborate costumes made by Garo Sparo. Although few of my costumes are very elaborate, I make most of them myself--probably the only aspect of costuming on which I raise the bar is in making tails, but I have yet to cover one with rhinestones.


Me in …

The Travels of Miss Dirty Martini

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I'm not much of a traveler; I'd even describe myself as being a bit provincial, keeping in mind that the province is New York City. In January 2007 I embarked on my first tour since 1994 when I was a feature dancer, heading out with the Sex Workers' Art Show to cover 33 cities in 35 days. Fortunately, I had one of my best and most-traveled friends with me, Miss Dirty Martini. I was doing a talking and teaching gig on the tour, while Dirty, Cono Snatch Zubobinskaya, and Bridget Irish, who split the tour with Julie Atlas Muz, provided the dance and burlesque. Dirty was a fantastic travel and hotel room partner. I also loved hearing her stories about all the places she's been, and I'm very excited that she agreed to be interviewed about what it's like to be a burlesque performer and world traveler.


Dirty tributes Zorita in Las Vegas at the Exotic World Striptease Reunion. Photo by Jo Weldon.

Dirty, when did you first perform burlesque?
Before I was Dirty Martini, I …

Happy New Year!

If you'd like a little bubbly--or, rather, a big bubble--this video's for you!