Welcome to burlesque rocks. Burlesque is an art form that well and truly rocks! But what is burlesque? From it’s roots in satire and social commentary burlesque has become a powerhouse of storytelling and striptease. But I guess that really doesn’t answer the question does it. What does the Oxford dictionary have to say about it?
What is Burlesque?
In modern burlesque we embrace our curves and show off our assets. Performers aim to entertain and empower their audience. We want you to embrace your body and love it too! Anyone can do burlesque no dance experience or acting experience is necessary. All you need to do is be ready to explore and discover your inner diva. You can take that diva to the stage or bring them out in everyday life, by strutting to the bus stop or holding your head up high when you enter a room.
So what is burlesque dance?
The 5 things I love about burlesque
1) The Inclusiveness
Burlesque is for everyone, it is one of the most inclusive and welcoming art forms. A great show includes varying body types, POC, and LGBTQ+ artists. Frequent messages of acceptance & love are told. Even hard hitting topics like bigotry, discrimination and racism are presented in an entertaining way that make you think and present a new understanding on the subject. You are guaranteed to leave a burlesque show not just thinking about how amazing the performers are and how there are body types similar to your own, you also leave with questions and thoughts on various political and social themes.
2) The story telling
This leads me to story telling. There are not many performance styles where you have between 3 – 7mins to tell a story. Each act is a mini story with a climactic finish. The wonders of modern burlesque have taken the story telling to a whole new level. Voiceovers and sounds bites help to put across the message, of an act, that in the past would get lost in the tease or dance movements. Producers such as House of Burlesque and Clandestine Cabaret regularly use projection throughout their shows which expand on the visual aspect of a performance. As technology evolves so does how artists use technology to tell their stories. As an audience member I love an act that involves a bit of a story.
3) The Love and friendship
It doesn’t matter who you do your 1st burlesque show with you are part of a moment together that won’t be forgotten. I had the privilege of watching and help cultivate many friendships. Some of these friendships are friends for life or lead to friends starting a business together or friends who get together and have a baby. If you are moving to a new city and are looking to make new friends take up a course in burlesque. You won’t regret it!
4) The attitude
Burlesque promotes body confidence and the performances especially help you regain control and fall in love for your body. The act of showing off your body to a crowd cheering you on, can only boast that confidence. One of the things to help get you up on that stage is an attitude and finding the attitude that suits you. I’ve always seen the four styles below as the main attitudes of burlesque:
You can commit to one attitude or incorporate all four into an act. When you move using these attitudes you move with purpose and I love seeing these attitudes expressed on stage. A cute wink, sensual stoke of the thigh, an oops I tripped and powerful poses that make you want to shout out “Raaah!” fill me with a lot of joy.