Alas, the Vancouver International Burlesque Festival has come to a sweet and glittery end for this year, and all the hard work of the board, performers, and volunteers has been celebrated appropriately (wink…ahem). For those of you who attended, we thank you and hope that you had the most wonderful time! For those of you who did not, we offer our sympathies; not only did you miss out on three incredible nights of burlesque entertainment and artistry, but our members were spreading the sass full force over those stages every night, and we have allllllll the photos to prove it. Hint: don’t go too far, there’s plenty to come, and you won’t want to miss it. I assure you!
We’re not ready to get off our cloud of sparkles and feathers just yet though (or ever), so tomorrow, we’d like to take you on a journey to the heart of glamour. We’re celebrating the art of burlesque with an evening of tantalizing glitz, smooth moves, and good old bump and grind. Not only do we have Nicky Ninedoors, Burgundy Brixx, Voracious V, Carole Brunette, and August Wiled on the lineup to titillate your senses, but we are featuring the fabulous Lady Josephine! If you think it couldn’t possibly get better than that, you’re wrong; the statuesque Ava Lure will be stage managing, and the witty bombshell Mama Kay will host you through the dream.
Doors at 7pm, show at 9pm, suggested donation is $10. A cast of 13 for only $10?! Don’t let this one get away from you.
Oh yes, we know why you’re here, we didn’t forget, so here is a collection of gorgeous photos from our last show at Guilt and Co! Fringe was flying, tassels were twirling, and the incredibly talented Cameron Brown was there to capture it. While you’re at it, you should definitely check out his blog too! He may have some incredible shots from the festival on there..
as part of
In honour of the fast approaching burlesque festivities, please enjoy some of the photos that were taken during the festival last year!
We are very excited about the Vancouver International Burlesque Festival! The board has been hard at work all year, but things are getting pretty intense now! Intense in the good kinda way, you know? Like when you feel you’re getting kinda werked and are like yeaaaaah… harder.
Anyhoo! The festival runs from May 2nd to May 4th, plus there is a wicked after party on the 5th at The Cellar. For reals, I’m going to be laughing my ass off all night. Or swooning ;) -You should come too!
after the festival…
Tuesday May 14th at Guilt & Co
This coming month we are featuring the spectacular Lady Josephine! Burgundy Brixx, August Wiled, Nicky Ninedoors, Voracious V, and Carole Brunette round out the line up (uhhyeah they do), Ava Lure is our leggy stage manager for the evening and the night is hosted by the bombshell Mama Kay! Of course you’ll be treated to the musical stylings of The Locksmiths all night, so don’t miss out!
Doors 7 pm, show 9 pm, suggested donation is $10. Pretty good for a 13 person cast, right?
So mark it in your calendars, cuz sh*ts about to get real sparkly.
Now, where were we? Oh yes, dessert. Who says dessert can’t be good for you?
Please indulge in the photos that were taken by the talented Cameron Brown at our most recent show at Guilt. Isn’t his website just full of gorgeous, gorgeous photos? And his blog is pretty nifty, too! I get the feeling that you’ll be seeing lots more photos of his in the near future…
Tuesday April 9th, Show starts at 9 pm, Guilt & Co at 1 Alexander Street in Gastown. Suggested donation $10. Our regular monthly show! It’s a super fun night with cocktails and gorgeous food, a great atmosphere, and every month we prepare a different style of show for you!
We’ve been successfully running since September 2010, and since then there has been quite an evolution in our cast. Pandora has literally doubled in size, becoming what Ruthe Ordare refers to as an army of talent. We’ve all been really happy with how the show runs and the format we’ve come up with.
That being said…
Another evolution is approaching in the future. We have big plans. I’ve been plotting and budgeting and dreaming and scheming, and it’s going to happen. February 14th, 2014… Yep. Mark that in your calendar. You will want to be there.
In the meantime, if you have a friend who hasn’t been to our monthly show and isn’t terribly concerned because the monthly keeps happening… they should come out sometime. Sooner rather than later. Because evolution is inevitable, and change is good. And we want our audience to see our creative process when it comes to our productions. We don’t want you to miss out on how we’re getting where we’re going. We want you to continue to be a part of our history!
Speaking of history, fast approaching is the
Burgundy Brixx has put together a really great production that we’re a part of on the Thursday night, and our members are all over the showcases on Friday and Saturday! It’s pretty sweet. I highly recommend getting a weekend pass. Highly recommend!
and now… for set 2 of photos from our most recent show at Guilt!
Photography by Rene Blais. Colour edits by myself. I was feeling experimental this morning.
Paris a Minuit!
On March 29 at The Rio Theater, join some of Vancouver’s finest burlesque performers with special guests for an evening of burlesque, dance, comedy, and circus with a French flare! Produced by Miss Fitt, the evening features the diverse burlesque talents of Melody Mangler, April O’Peel, Nicky Ninedoors, Voracious V, Ruthe Ordare, Connie Cahoots, Voodoo Pixie, and August Wiled, joined by superstar variety acts, including Luciterra, The Hot Pants, Ally ‘Oop, The Funky Yukinator, and accordionist Kathryn Peterson. Get dressed up in your most chic outfits, because there’s a Parisian Photo Booth at the event, too! Tickets in advance $15, door $20. Get advance tickets at Scout Boutique or through the title link.
60s Groove at Guilt & Company
on the 2nd Tuesday of every month, we put on a live music and burlesque extravaganza! This month, we’re groovin to the tune of the 60s. Featuring performances by Miss Fitt, Ruthe Ordare, Burgundy Brixx, Nicky Ninedoors, with help from August Wiled, and scintillating music by The Locksmiths.
Suggested donation $10. Show 9 pm. 1 Alexander St in Gastown.
We’re very excited to announce that our very own Ruthe Ordare, Nicky Ninedoors, and Burgundy Brixx have been accepted into the Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend in Las Vegas! Ruthe Ordare is competing in the Best Duo category with Villainy Loveless (You’ve seen her perform with us before, she’s rad, obvs), Nicky Ninedoors is performing with Brother Keys in the Movers, Shakers, and Innovators Showcase, and Burgundy Brixx is competing for the Queen of Burlesque Title! WOW! We are incredibly honoured. We were all planning on going anyways because BHoF is such an amazing pile of glittery inspiration and love, and now we get to be right up in that pile! Special shout out to Sweet Soul Burlesque who will also be performing in the Movers, Shakers, and Innovators Showcase, Melody Mangler and Lola Frost who are in the Duos competition, and Lola Frost who is also in the Queen competition! Go Vancouver!
And now… onto photos from our Get Away! production at Guilt & Co.
Photography for the evening by Rene Blais
catch the collective in…
An ElectroSwing Club Canada spectacular at The Rickshaw, Friday March 22nd. Full show by Pandora and The Locksmiths, Dj’s, dancefloor, fashion show and more!
upcoming sister productions from P&L family members…
Tomorrow! March 5th at Guilt & Co, 1 Alexander St in Gastown. Doors 7 pm, show 9 pm. Suggested donation $10. Wear your best 60s duds and get ready to be blown away by a whole troupe of dancers, plus guest hula hooper Nicky Ninedoors! Produced by Miss Fitt!
Friday, March 29th at The Rio Theatre. Doors 7 pm, Show 8 pm. Can’t be bothered to write the whole lineup, plus reading is good for you. World class promoter, that’s me! Just click the link and look at that amazing lineup!
Now, maybe you were stuck inside all day and maybe you need a bit of a pick me up. Or maybe you just need to look at pretty photos. We don’t judge.
Here’s a few morsels of gorgeous from Jess Desaulniers-Lea!
Next Up with Pandora and The Locksmiths:
And check out every Tuesday at Guilt & Co for fabulous cabaret themed productions, featuring incredibly talented performers whom we love and work with as much as we can!
Well! now that we’ve scheduled your life for you… let’s get onto business!
As you can see, we’ve got some really amazing events coming up. Our next show at Guilt features a special guest who both plays an instrument and is an excellent burlesque dancer- Miss Via Rose! I’m personally excited to see her dance whenever I get the opportunity, but I’m also extra excited because she and I are creating our first duet together! Featuring the bassoon, my voice, some classic strip-tease, and gorgeous custom costumes by my sister in law, Jessica Bayntun.
We’re also very excited for our first ElectroSwing event as a whole group! The WHOLE SHEBANG! Wow!
And as you can see, Miss Fitt has been gettin busy! What? She’s a hard worker! She’s got her Hot Pants show on March 5th (I’ll be swinging hoops) as well as Paris a Minuit on the 29th. You should look at that lineup. Kinda insane!
And now, what you came for…
Last month we had the wonderful Jess Desaulniers-Lea be our sponsor photographer. While we love our men behind the camera, there’s a special sort of vibe when you know that it’s a woman who’s waiting for your sultriest moment to be captured at the flick of her finger…. shall we take a look at what she got?
Hitting the stage at 9 pm on February 12th at Guilt & Co…
See you there!
It’s been a bit of a whirlwind! Winter is a really busy season for burlesque, what with religious holidays and all, and on top of it I just got back from performing in the 1st Annual Minneapolis Burlesque Festival with Sean! WHEEEE! We performed “Nude” in their beautiful Ritz Theatre (Ummm… Vancouver? You need a theatre like that) and just came back so overwhelmingly inspired. It was our first out of town festival, and getting to meet so many international talent machines was just incredible. I could gush for days.
Sandwiching the MBF, getting applications in for both the Vancouver International Burlesque Festival and the Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend in Vegas, doing photo shoots and video shoots, plus now buckling down and creating the first duet between Burgundy Brixx and myself (excited!) for April O’Peel’s Burlesque Duos on Valentine’s at The Rio (Miss Fitt is also in that show!)…. it’s a little busy. I’m also going to be fan dancing in my good friend Mackenzie Gray’s Crazy 8′s film “Under The Bridge of Fear”, and I’m really excited about that. Burgundy Brixx is a part of that, too, plus many people connected to our glorious burlesque community here in Vancouver.
Did I mention that it’s also my birthday coming up? Yeah, let’s talk more about MEMEME! It’s my birthday on Sunday, Feb 17th, and I’ll be celebrating in the way that pleases me most- by shaking my stuff for tips at Kitty Nights! I’m one of those people who haaaaates to plan a party and would rather be working than plan a party… by dancing at Kitty Nights, I get to do both! I can’t think of a better way to celebrate, to be honest, than sweating all over a wad of caaaaashhh. Right? I’m going to be wearing Pants. Yes, you heard me. PANTS. And you can bet they will be your FAVOURITE PANTS EVER. They’re the only pair of pants that I actually own and wear. So clearly they are magical.
Enough of this yapping. You came here for photos.
This week we’re featuring Lotus Eater Films, who came out to our show in January.
Are you ready for some heart stopping femininity?
Feb 12th, Guilt & Co at 1 Alexander Street in Gastown. Doors 7 pm, Show 9 pm.
Suggested donation $10, which directly funds all the heartbreaking cats and kittens you see on stage!
At our upcoming monthly show (monthly show #29! Holy crap!) we are presenting a saucy mix of femininity. We have gloriously soft and gorgeous contrasted with fiercely film noir, as well as deliciously complex combinations of those ideas. Much like a fine bottle of scotch. Okay, okay. Wine for all your wine ladies (and gents). I’ll keep the scotch to myself, thanks. Okay, fine, I’ll share it with Jody.
I could tell you all the reasons why you should come see the show, or you could just come, because you know why already. I wrote a testimonial on how awesome our show is, but frankly my craft desk is a mess and I can’t find it. Oh well.
Ramble ramble ramble…. heeeey, how about some pictures?
This blog entry, we’re featuring the work of Voodoo Bill (swoon). We were lucky to have two photographers at our Dream a Little Dream show (with Amber Ray!) in January, so next blog entry, you get an entirely different flavour! We’ve got your bases covered, Vancouver.
Alright, it’s time to indulge. (favourite word ever. I should just start saying “It’s Nicky O’Clock”!)
Come to Guilt & Co on Tuesday, December 11th to witness our winter spectacular! Doors open at 7, show begins with our balloon girl and the band at 9. Admission is by donation- suggested at $10. And hey, I’ll be selling two pretty hair pieces at the show (if they last!) and you can deduct your admission donation from the cost of the hairpiece! It’s my thank you for being supportive of us artists. We recommend getting there early as seating is first come, first serve.
Hmm, what else…
How about a photo blog? Last blog entry we featured the first act of November’s Un Cafe de Paris show with beautiful photos from Voodoo Bill Kustom Kulture Photography. We’re very happy to share the rest of the photos from that show. I’m very happy I get to drool over shots of Amber Ray, Lady Josephine, Burgundy Brixx, and Miss Fitt. Good morning to me! There’s a couple photos of me in there, too.
On December 11th we hope to see you at Guilt & Co for
Last year we featured Travis in our show to rave reviews. He’s always such a treat to watch, let alone work with. We just couldn’t resist his charms. Har har! But seriously…. ladies in our audience…. we know you come to watch fierce women and be entertained and titillated and inspired… but this month you’ve got some eye and brain candy represented by this man. Who in the heck gets to be tall-dark-and-handsome-and-smart-and-f*cking-magical? Travis Bernhardt. That’s who. So, you’re welcome
We’re also welcoming back to the stage one of our rare treat ladies- a founding member of P&L, Carole Brunette! Joining her are the likes of Burgundy Brixx, Miss Fitt, and myself. The long and leggy Ava Lure is our stage manager this month, and Mama Kay our MC. Doors 7 pm, show 9 pm. Suggested donation $10- which goes directly to paying the cast of 12 people on stage!
A big snuggly thank you to all who came to Cafe de Paris at Guilt & Co last month- wow was that place ever packed! It’s usually pretty cozy before, but on top of our regular crowd, there were faces we’d never seen before in the audience, and l’amour was in the air! Pretty sure the incredible Amber Ray and Lady Josephine had something to do that that, don’t you think? We were so thrilled to get to work with them- international guests are a little hard to come by in Vancouver, so we absolutely jumped at the chance to collaborate. Did they ever exceed every expectation, and you know we have high expectations! Speaking of expectations, we apologize for starting the show later than usual, we had some unexpected sound setup issues that pushed us a little late. We’ll be on time next time, promise!
Just a friendly reminder that we don’t allow any form of videotaping or photography during our show, unless you’re a designated photographer (if you’re a professional photographer and are interested in shooting, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org)- this includes cameras as well as iPhones and all those fancy little devices. We know it’s oh-so-tempting to try to snag a picture of that amaaazing moment that is playing out on stage, but then you have to take your eyes away from the stage and look through a screen. And that is not nearly as awesome as absorbing and indulging in the performance real time. And that is what we live for- indulging you in real time, completely live. We spend so much time in front of computer screens for work and un fun purposes, it really tickles us to be able to connect with our audiences one hundred percent! Furthermore… if you are caught breaking the rules (naughty!) then you’ll have to deal with me. And I’m a very nice person, but my will is even firmer than my backside. I realize that’s hard to believe, but just ask around.
On the bright side! This little issue inspired something that I think is VERY cool. We’re going to have a polaroid camera (can those things be called retro yet? Or are they just outdated? whatevs) so that you can purchase autographed photos of you and your friends with our performers and musicians! I love sassy keepsakes. I was inspired by the gorgeous Voodoo Pixie at our wedding reception- she snapped a picture of John and I and it’s just so charming. What’s more, is it was signed by a number of the guests at our party. I love it so much, and after watching so many people struggle to get pictures with their camera phones (It’s out of focus! That one didn’t take! I blinked! Why is my camera frozen!) I thought it would be so nice if people could just sit back, relax, and have their photo taken and have a little autographed treasure handed to them to take home right away.
Wow, I’ve talked for two paragraphs about photos. They say a good act runs with three’s… so, here you go.
A photo blog! Featuring the stunning artistry of Voodoo Bill!
Just what you’re been waiting for! Unless you were clever and skipped over my blathering. In which case, good on you. You made it through 723 words.
On November 13th at Guilt & Co in the heart of Gastown, join us on a flight of fancy to
We have two spectacular internationally renowned special guests contributing to Miss Fitt’s Parisian fantasy: The merveilleux Amber Ray (New York City) and the incroyable Lady Josephine! (Montreal)
Doors 7 pm, show 9 pm. Seating on a first come first serve basis. Suggested donation $10.
Now, I know what you’re here for. A photo blog, perhaps? We’ve got one for you. But before we get to that, we have a couple important announcements to make!
Pandora and The Locksmiths are thrilled to be performing at the 12th Annual Clayoquot Sound Oyster Festival! On Saturday, November 17th, Burgundy Brixx, yours truly, August Wiled, Ruthe Ordare, and the wonderful Locksmiths invade Tofino with class, sensuality, and sweet music in honour of the sweet aphrodisiac the festival celebrates!
But wait, there’s more! You have a chance to win a prize package of
- Two nights at the iconic Wickaninnish Inn, in a deluxe guest room, two Oyster Trio dishes at SoBo Restaurant, and two admission tickets to all of these Clayoquot Oyster Festival events:
- Mermaid’s Ball on Friday, November 16, 2012 at 8:00pm
- Clayoquot Sound Oyster Farm Tour with Remote Passages Marine Excursions on Saturday, November 17, 2012, 9:30am departure
- Oyster Gala on Saturday, November 17 at 7:00pm
The total value of this prize package is over $1,000! The winner will be drawn on November 7, 2012.
Click here to enter this fabulous contest!
Holy smokes. Does that not just sound like the most indulgent getaway ever? We are so excited for this production- it’s our first out of town gig as a group! Oysters, jazz, showgirls, love… what better first time could there be? (Also, did you see that there will be the unveiling of the new oyster which has been named “The Clayoquot Climax”? Ahem. Looking forward….!)
Ready for the photo blog? Well, here you go! We’re featuring the wonderful photography of Cameron Brown in this blog.
Hold onto your hats, ladies and gentlemen, we’re taking a ride on Miss Fitt’s French wings of fancy on November 13th and turning Guilt & Co into
We are thrilled to have two spectacular special guests for Un Cafe de Paris!
Pictured above, the shimmering sensationalist from New York, Amber Ray! www.amberray.net
And from Montreal, the marvelously musical Lady Josephine! www.facebook.com/TheLadyJosephine
Yeah, um, the only word I can think of right now is YOWZERS! Holy fierce, batman!
Miss Fitt, Burgundy Brixx, and yours truly will be adding new Parisian inspired solo acts to the show, and we’re creating a silky new trio! Voracious V will be on feather and balloon duty, and The Locksmiths will play beautiful music to serenade us all! We’re looking forward to a truly spectacular evening!
November 13th at Guilt & Co. Doors 7 show 9. Suggested donation $10. Get there early- with these guests we are going to fill up faster than ever!
Speaking of l’amour, we’d like to thank you for being a part of Fall (in love again) last month! Our most recent production truly lived up to its title, with the finale of our fabulous trumpeter Alison Gorman proposing to her long time girlfriend Soo on stage. It was magical. Burgundy Brixx created an act to Ravel’s Bolero and danced en pointe to an enraptured crowd, then sneakily got Soo up on stage at the end to “thank her” for helping in the act. Heh heh heh. At that moment, Alison came out from the back of the stage playing a beautiful melody (to the completely unsuspecting Soo, I might add) and then got down on bended knee and proposed! It was only at that moment that Soo had any idea what was going on. The crowd jumped to their feet and gave the loudest cheers I’ve ever heard there. There were many happy tears. (On a related note, I’m not sure how we all managed to keep a secret for like, two months, but no one brought kleenex. Come on. Troupe full of ladies. No kleenex. Really?)
Congratulations to the beautiful couple. We wish you many, many happy years together. Thank you for sharing your love with all of us. It’s beautiful and we love you.
On that wonderful note, onto the fabulous photos taken by Cameron Brown!
This morning there was a soft but present coolness in the air, and it’s as if suddenly it became Fall.
Now, I love summer. Absolutely adore it. I really do enjoy wearing next to nothing. But…. I can’t wear my totally cozy wool sweater in the summer. And my furs are definitely on holiday from June-August. And let’s face it- who the heck gets real close and cozy in the midnight hour for any length of time when it’s stifling hot and you don’t have air conditioning? Fall is a beautiful thing, my friends. Fall is the time to get cozy. It’s the time to snuggle up with good food, good drinks, and good people.
It’s time to
featuring special guest Via Rose, our long and leggy lady August Wiled, the firey innovation of Burgundy Brixx, the delectable charm of Voracious V, and yours truly, hosted by The Purrrfessor, all to glorious accompaniment by The Locksmiths!
Now, that show is just a little over a week away, and if you’re absolutely dying for a Tuesday to just come up and pounce on you, you should check out The Hot Pants at Guilt and Co tomorrow night. Seriously one of the most entertaining things you’ll ever see. A whole choreographed troupe of retro babes dancing to 1960s vinyl, produced by Vancouver’s resident go-go queen, Miss Fitt! Ohhhh yeah. It’s a seriously slick production, and I don’t throw that word around for fun!
Alright, onto the beautiful photos taken by Cameron Brown at our most recent show!
This entry will be short and oh so sweet. My apartment is having its windows powerwashed, and I’m not allowed to have any open windows at all…. did I mention that my apartment is south facing? I rarely wear clothes in here as it is, but no open windows?! So I’m here to deliver you the saucey evidence of our Anniversary show on September 11th at Guilt, while simultaneously enticing you to
Our next show on October 9th at Guilt & Co is shaping up to be a real cozy affair!
Not only do we have the usual instigators Burgundy Brixx, Voracious V, and yours truly, but we also have the hottest new burlesque sensation in Vancouver, August Wiled!
But wait, there’s more!
We have a special guest with us this month that we’ve been trying to coordinate with since we began two years ago: the stunning
This gorgeously auburn performer is not only a wonderful burlesque artist, but she also plays the bassoon and the contrabassoon, often with the VSO. She’s just dripping with class and it’s a joy that our schedules have finally coordinated!
See you at our next show!
Now, for the eye candy…
I have a bit of a confession to make. Our lighting wasn’t exactly excellent for photo purposes last time and so this photo blog will be smaller. It just goes to show you that if you really want to be a part of our shows and experience the full meal deal of singers, dancers, burlesque, and live music… you gotta be there
I love how I manage to turn the issue of me not double checking the lighting into a “you need to come to our shows”. Ha!
Photos are by our resident live photo sponsor, Cameron Brown
Well, it’s certainly been a while since the last blog entry, but we’re back at it now, feeling refreshed and inspired and ready to dazzle- just in time for our
We’ve gone through a few little growth spurts and changes over the past few months: the addition of Ruthe Ordare, August Wiled, Miss Kiss, and Ava Lure officially into our collective fold (naughty!), bidding farewell to our incredible drummer Trevor Grant, who is going to be living in Charlottetown with his amazing lady Samantha (so sad, but so happy!) and we’re currently wishing our keyboardist, my big brother Sean Bayntun, loads of luck and success as his project Facts participate in The Peak Performance Project this year, right before embarking on a cross country tour!
With all these shifts and positive changes happening, we’ve been getting together to figure out how to operate even better as a collective, and how to make even more solid productions. Ruthe Ordare is now our official Social Media Showgirl, handling our Twitter and Instagram accounts, Burgundy Brixx is our official poster designer for our events, I handle photo wrangling and blog action, and we all fill in the cracks when it comes to admin and all the non-showgirl tasks that are involved in being showgirls. Like printing set lists. Or sending reminder emails. You know, super sexy things like that. In addition to fun task assignment, yay, we’re also working on developing productions! In November, Miss Fitt puts on the artistic director panties for our show at Guilt & Co, and she has not one, but two incredible headliners lined up for the occasion. I’ll leave the reveal to her, so you’ll just have to wait.
Now, you know I didn’t just come on here to write about “Oooo, we’re made of rainbows and love eachother and positive growth and sustainability and stuff”. You know I came on here to share some eye candy with you. Ohhhh yeah. In the midst of all the love and positivity and crap, John Bews and I got married! And since I didn’t organize photos from our last show, I’m going to tide you over with photos from our wedding ceremony. Just so you know, my parents haven’t even seen these yet. They’re having to read this blog in order to see the photos. I’m going to hear about this. The sacrifices I make for our readers is astounding. FEEL SPECIAL.
All these photos were taken by Maria Koehn of Frozen Reflections Photography. She is a dream to work with! My gown and John’s suit were designed and made by Messica Demolition (with the lace appliques on the skirt cut out and sewn on by my mother and my aunt). Messica’s dress is a 20s flapper dress with beautiful daisy lace print, and she added a new silk slip underneath and a silk sash for shape. Catherine’s sequinned gown was originally this incredible find of an old lady’s dress, but with some simple modifications became an absolute stunner! The green gown on Voracious V is one of my costumes made by Messica, AND Messica also made my mother’s gown! She’s a machine! Highly, highly recommend…!
With Summer Groove just around the corner, we felt it was time to introduce you to another new member of our collective…
But before we get to her interview (and gallery! Shazam!) let me tell you a little bit about our upcoming show. We have a craaaazy lineup in store for you, and this show is all about the groove. Burgundy Brixx and I will be performing, as per usual, and Miss Fitt will be lending her sweet voice for the show, but in addition to that we have fierce burlesque vocalist Miss Kiss, and Vancouver’s high energy sweet-heart from Sweet Soul Burlesque and the Vancouver Burlesque Centre, Cherry On Top! We’ve never performed with her before and we’ve been dying to for a long time! And with Cherry in the mix, you know there will be lots of booty groovin music abounding. Have I mentioned how hard we work our musicians? One month it’s all 1940s and classic jazz, the next month we make them do funk and soul. And they switch gears like nobodies business. NBD.
Alright. Let’s get to know Miss Kiss. And let me give you a disclaimer- this little kissing bandit is much more likely to throw you down and kiss you than wait for a knight in shining armour to come deliver one. She’s fierce. Read about her. The lady is gettin naked for you, so get to know her!
What is your performance and training background?
After being out of school for a year, my Mom said I better get doing something, so I thought, okay, I like to sing and express myself and dress up in costumes – how bout musical theatre? So I auditioned for the Capilano Musical Threatre Diploma Program. So that is three years of training which includes, but was not limited to: singing, acting, jazz, tap, ballet, film, music theory, and a lot of masterclasses! This does not mean I am a pro at all these things, but I have lots to draw on for performances should I need them! I learned that you can really disguise how terrible you are at tap if you learn to smile…ha! I was the rocker girl dressing up as Alice Cooper for first year ice breakers and not having a clue who Sondheim was. I quickly learned though! I have performed with many local theatre companies since graduating, including Gateway Threatre, Theatre Under the Stars and the Arts Club Theatre.
I also started getting into Marilyn Monroe around Grade 9. My dad bought me a Monroe lunchbox as a gift for good grades and I started watching her films and wearing red lipstick everyday – with my doc martins and bondage pants. So I have always had this mix of rock n’ roll and glamour. I also found out I make a terrible blonde and could not be Monroe.
Enter Bettie Page and the burlesque world. “Oh my gawd! So amazing! Where can I find this world?!” I asked myself as a little girl from Surrey. Well thank goodness for The Purrrfessor!!! We were in a production of “Jesus Christ Superstar” with TUTS in 2008 and he told me about Kitty Nights, that I should come out, and maybe Go-Go sometime. Thank you Jesus! Ha! Here are all these amazing women who come in all shapes, sizes and colours just kicking ass on stage being sexy and fun and strong! Love love love at first sight! So needless to say, I did Go-Go, and went on to start doing my own numbers. Burgundy Brixx really showed me how it is done and has always been someone who inspires me as a performer, teacher and friend.
So more on the “why burlesque”: it is a medium where I feel I get to truly express myself and my vision how I choose. It gives me a chance to be my own character instead of one already created in a script. It also has helped me be more comfortable with myself. Miss Kiss does not have body issues or insecurities – she just wants to have a good time and entertain!
We’re really stoked to work with Miss Kiss. She has a massive voice, as you may have seen during our “Night Owl Revue” production for the Vancouver International Burlesque Festival, or in Blue Morris’ Beatles Burlesque. With the amount of skill she has, it’s no wonder we’re all trying to get a piece!
Enjoy the photos!
It’s been hot and glorious, and while our last Heat Wave production was sizzling (we’ve got the photos to prove it!), our next production is going to be nothing short of gloriously scandalous- we’re bringing the fire for…
Thank you to everyone who came out to our Heat Wave production at Guilt & Co! It was a delightful evening. And many thanks to all those who made that show happen.
Our next show is August 14th, and we’ll be featuring special guests Cherry On Top and Miss Kiss! Save the date! It’s going to be a very groovy show.
Alright, onto the saucey photo blog! Here are some photos to tide you over until our next blog entry. We’re been collaborating with Cameron Brown lately and we’re pretty much just thrilled about it. You know all those photos he’s done. They’re the ones you keep clicking on and looking at. Yes… I see your every move when you’re on here… (On a related note, who keeps searching for nude photos of a certain non burlesque dancer we know? You search for that a lot! I recommend going to Wreck Beach instead. More effective.)
Anyhoo. Onto the awesome Act I photos of Ruthe Ordare, Villainy Loveless, and yours truly…
Tomorrow evening at Guilt & Co we’re turning up the heat even more and bringing you a full fledged…
In the past couple of weeks you’ve been getting to know our newest collective members. So far you’ve read interviews with Ava Lure and August Wiled. Today, we bring you the divine bombshell
Read all about her below!
What is your performance and training background?
Most of my performance and training background has been in dance, I began jazz and ballet when I was 10 and began studying it seriously when I was around 15. I was very focused and determined in my ballet training, and I was lucky to have a very talented teacher who helped me reach the Royal Academy of Dance’s grade 8 in ballet after only four years. I also competed in local dance competitions in Ontario.
In my late teens, I started teaching dance at my studio and choreographed competitive routines, performance company pieces and studio recital numbers. I also owned and operated my own summer dance camp before I moved west to Vancouver.
While I was attending university, I choreographed five musicals. It was a huge learning experience since my choreography now had to factor in singing as well as performers who had little to no training. But it was also some of the most fun I had at university!
Some of my biggest performances have included dancing for the National Aboriginal Achievement Awards for CBC in 2002 and in the Opening Ceremonies at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.
Currently I am taking classes at the Vancouver Burlesque Centre and you can occasionally find me substituting when Burgundy Brixx or Lola Frost are away!
How and when and why did you get into burlesque?
I began looking into burlesque a few years ago but didn’t have the opportunity to pursue it until 2010. In my final year of university I had a class with another local performer Evelyn Ivory, and we somehow started chatting about musicals and dance when burlesque came up. She referred me to Burgundy Brixx’s School of Tease classes and the rest is history! I began taking lessons with Burgundy in November 2010 and made my debut in January 2011 as one of her Minsky Follies girls at Kitty Nights.
From so many places, I’m constantly inspired by other performers who are trying new things and expanding the genre. I find ideas from movies, books, and primarily music. The dancer in me hears a piece of music and decides “I need to dance to this”. From there I’ll spend time listening to it and the ideas for costumes and movement develop in my head. Any big plans or productions you’re a part of in the future you’re excited about?
Well, first of all I’m very excited to become an official member with Pandora & The Locksmiths, I’ve had the pleasure of stage kittening with them for almost a year now and it’s an honour to be asked to join the ranks with performers whom I highly respect. Outside of Pandora, I’m looking forward to staging our Burlesque “beauty pageant” Ta-tas and Tiaras with April O’Peel and Madame Mae I on July 13th at the Rio Theatre. I’m also taking on my first attempt at producing this fall with Blue Morris Productions!
Is that not an impressive resume or what?
We’re thrilled to have her perform with us for the first time tomorrow alongside Burgundy Brixx, Nicky Ninedoors, August Wiled, and special guest Villainy Loveless. You’ll enjoy the vocal talents of Miss Fitt and Doug Thoms (our fabulous host this month) as well as, you guessed it, the musical stylings of the five piece sensation, The Locksmiths! And don’t forget about the balloon popping fun with Ava Lure!
Doors open at 7 pm, show starts at 9 pm.
Suggested donation $10.
It fills up fast. Get there early and get yourself a cool drink, cuz it’s going to be a real scorcher!
Heat Wave! is just around the corner…
and in that production, we’re officially introducing our newest collective members. Last week you got to know Ava Lure, and this week you can get into the head of the sensational…
Winner of the 2nd place award in Vancouver’s Strip Search for her first ever burlesque performance (!!), August Wiled has materialized onto the burlesque scene here with a passion for this art form and natural skill that don’t normally come to performers right away. If I do say so myself, ladies and gentlemen, she’s one to watch very closely. We’re pretty awe struck, and very excited to be working with her.
Let’s find out what makes her tick/strip!
What is your performance and training background?
After spending much time dancing in front of ballets on public access television, I was enrolled in dance lessons at the age of three; mostly ballet, but over time including jazz, and lyrical. With dance I was able to spend time performing in competitions, and local shows. I have also performed as a singer, and as a musician; music pervades my life!
How and when and why did you get into burlesque?
Burlesque and burlesque culture is something I have always been intrigued by. Even as a young teenager, I adored pin up artwork and beautiful lingerie; scratching at the surface, I suppose. Somehow though, it took me until last year to realize that burlesque was something that I could actually partake in outside the audience role! I started taking classes with Burgundy at the Vancouver Burlesque Centre, and after just the first one, it became very apparent to me that this was something that I HAD to be involved in, and really something that I was meant to be doing; it’s all my most favorite things combined and makes me so damn happy.
Just a few short months ago, I entered “Strip Search”, a burlesque competition for new performers. I was delighted at the opportunity to get on stage and really challenge myself to create something I was proud of. I had absolutely no expectations going into it as far as “winning” anything (aside from the experience, and that was enough for me), but much to my surprise, I was awarded second place, and given the opportunity to perform again at Kitty Nights that weekend!! I was so overwhelmed and humbled by the wonderful responses I got from audience members, and performers that I really look up to; it was like a dream, the most wonderful feeling dream, and completely solidified my decision to continue pursuing the art form further.
On a personal level, burlesque is the most fulfilling thing I have ever done. I am never as nervous as I think I should be before going on stage, and have an obscene amount of fun performing, and feeling so natural in it is a bit of a strange revelation for me; though always looking for an opportunity to laugh, I am a rather reserved person in my daily life, even shy sometimes. I was thinking recently about my “burlesque character”, but in all honesty, it turns out that my character is really just myself in my truest form! Ha, it feels more like the “daytime” me is really the one in character for my 9-5… But in any case, it all makes sense to me now!
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
Oh my, this is difficult and vast! Of course I am always inspired by other performers, and the level of ingenuity the exists in the burlesque community in general, both past and present, but I would have to say that creatively, I find most of my inspiration in music; music has always been dominant, and even therapeutic in my life. When I listen to something that I really connect with, it plays out like a film in my head; movements, mood, colors, you name it. I try to just feel it, and let those feelings dictate what I do; I think that’s really important, to put your thoughts aside and just see what happens.
Any big plans or productions you’re a part of in the future you’re excited about?
I am always conspiring and dreaming…I need more hours in the day to get to all my plans! First and foremost though, THIS, Pandora and The Locksmiths; I am so excited and honored to be considered a member of such an extraordinary group of talented individuals. I was a fan before I knew anyone in the group, so it seems a bit crazy to me still. I went to my first PaTL show completely alone because I just really wanted to be there no matter what; I dressed up, did my hair and makeup, and ventured to Guilt and Co. for the evening, it was great!
I am so new to the community, so for now, I’m just going to keep creating, and learning, and getting out there as much as I can; every opportunity is so thrilling for me. I’m really looking forward to just spending time with, and getting to know other performers as well!
Well, there you have it! Like I said, she’s one to watch. A stunning dancer, a total sweetheart, and a powerhouse talent all around!
See you Tuesday, July 10th!
okay, take two…
(wordpress ate the entry the last time I published it, sending it into nowhere….*shakes fist**prays it doesn’t happen again…*)
Heat Wave! with Pandora and The Locksmiths is when we’re officially introducing you to our newest contributors to the collective…
You’ve seen them setting up our microphones and picking up our finery while dressed to the nines, perhaps you’ve popped some of their balloons while they’ve paraded around, classic showgirl style, and you haven’t seen them while they’ve been backstage helping us get ready and organized in between acts. Sweepers or stage kittens, ladies and gentlemen, are incredibly valuable to a show. In fact, totally invaluable. We’ve done a couple shows without sweepers (or hosts) and in addition to laughing wildly at ourselves for making such a decision later on, it’s made it really apparent how much on-the-ball energy goes into this facet of our production. A f*cking lot.
Since September 2010, we’ve been utilizing various talents in the community. First it was our good friend Voracious V, and she’s moved on to do her own performing with us every few months. Next to sweep for us was the bombshell Ruthe Ordare, one of Burgundy’s students from the School of Tease (Vancouver Burlesque Centre). We took Tease II together, actually! After Ruthe, we worked with the striking Ava Lure, a student of Melody Mangler’s at Screaming Chicken Theatrical Society. And the newest addition is the magnificent August Wiled, another of Burgundy’s students. So the next series of blog entries until I come up with some new idea (just gimme some time!) is all about them, starting with…
We’ve enjoyed working with this fox since last August, and as we watch her develop as a burlesque performer we just keep getting more excited! We can’t wait to have her debut with the band in the future- date to be announced…
Read the silly Q&A I made her do!
What is your performance and training background?
I grew up doing theatre in school and was in a pre-professional dance program outside of school as a teenager, and after that I got my diploma in theatre from Douglas College where I got to work with some of the most amazing people ever! I’m now going into my third year of the BFA Theatre Performance program at SFU School for Contemporary Arts. How many times can I say “Theatre” in one paragraph?
How and when and why did you get into burlesque?
In 2009 I went to my classmate’s graduation from Screaming Chicken’s Becoming Burlesque class and immediately enrolled in the next one as an “acting challenge.” I graduated in March 2010 and have been performing part-time (alongside full-time theatre school) ever since. I have always been fascinated by the idea of the “showgirl,” or “exotic dancer” in the olde-timey sense of the word, and had watched Moulin Rouge a billion times and could quote it off the top of my head. After taking Burgundy’s Elements of Tease, I fell in love with the history of burlesque. The most fantastic thing I discovered about the art is how much freedom is possible within a seemingly basic form.
3) Where do you draw your inspiration from?
50s and 60s music ad dresses, the early 20th century fascination with beauty, Ziegfeld and Berkley glamour, Vladimir Nabokov’s exquisite perversion, Frank Miller’s femmes fatales, and Shakespeare’s open heart.
I’m really excited to attend the Veiwpoints Training Workshop at the Banff Centre for the Arts in July!
Don’t you just wanna pop some balloons off of her? You do? Perfect! July 10th at Guilt and Co is the date you’re looking for.
See you there!
While you’re anxiously awaiting our Heat Wave! production at Guilt & Company……
we’ve got a delectable stash of photos for you to enjoy in the meantime. Omnomnom!
Here is Act 2 of our most recent show at Guilt, photographed by Cameron Brown.
PS- congratulations to the new board of directors for the Vancouver International Burlesque Festival- directors continuing on include Roxette Starr, Mike Cooper, Blue Morris, Sparkle Plenty, and April O’Peel. The board has welcomed Stevie Lix and Nicky Ninedoors into the sparkly workaholic fold! Let the world domination begin!