Monday, November 15, 2010

Burlesque is Theatre

"No matter how huge the goal, project or problem, if you diligently continue to chip away at it or take even the tiniest steps forward to correct the situation, you can achieve the results that you desire…”
-- Catherine D'Lish
There is a fantastic interview with burlesque dancer/ravishing beauty Catherine D'Lish at 21st Century Burlesque that brings to mind the concept of a "showperson."  (Note: There are a couple of NSFW pictures embedded in the article.)
I absolutely feel that it is each performer’s responsibility to entertain the audience. That somebody being on stage makes them feel good about themselves, or empowered, or that they are sending an important message to educate someone should take a back seat (in my opinion) to holding the interest of the spectators. I’m not saying that every act should be frivolous fluff, just that the individuals sitting (or standing) out there in the dark must be presented with something that doesn’t leave them feeling left out.
For some time I've meant to publish an essay on burlesque as a perfect theatrical form.  That's a work in progress and will probably turn into one of my ponderously pedantic multi-parters.  In the meantime, I encourage you, the reader to seek out a burlesque show and see what it's all about.  With the new Cher/Christina Aguilara movie dropping soon, you may be inclined to believe the glossy Hollywood take on what is in fact a vibrant, growing artform.

In Los Angeles, I recommend Peepshow Menagerie, Monday Night Tease and Victory Variety Hour.  That's where you'll find me onstage these days.

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