BHoF 2012: Double Trouble

It’s almost here! Everyone will soon be packed up and on their way to Vegas. I had a little chat with the three sizzling partnerships competing for ‘Best Duo’ – it’s going to be one hot joust!

Ready for action are Chicago Starlet, Frenchie Kiss, and Stage Door Johnny, Jett Adore; Jett’s fellow Johnny, Ray Gunn, and Miss Viva Las Vegas, Jeez Loueez; and the delicious Lola Frost and Cherry OnTop from Sweet Soul Burlesque...

Frenchie Kiss and Jett Adore

Frenchie Kiss and Jett Adore  ©Don Spiro
Frenchie Kiss and Jett Adore ©Don Spiro

Describe how and when this particular (genius and super hot!) partnership came together…

Over the years of sharing the stage as solo performers we became close friends and great admirers of each other’s work. Inevitably we imagined the impact our onstage chemistry could have if we fused our burlesque imaginations into a dirty duo.

Frenchie: But the inspiration for this particular act came from Jett’s birthday party last year. We’d had a few drinks and he wanted to see if I could twirl while he dipped me. It worked. We worked.

Jett: I knew our brains worked together, but when I realised how good our bodies felt together, the deal was sealed.

What’s the game plan for the pageant?

J: I plan to wear my most formal attire. I plan to be inspired. And I plan to spread my sweet hot sticky love all up and down the place.

F: I plan to boss Jett around.

You both come from BHoF award winning groups; how has your collective experience of team work and collaboration influenced your work together as a duo? Does the dynamic completely change again when you are relying on and working with one other person?

J: I’ve worked in theatre my whole life, so I’m very comfortable with and inspired by a collaborative process. Of course the dynamic of working with my Stage Door Johnnies brothers is different than working with Frenchie, simply because collaboration changes depending on the individuals you’re working with. Working with Frenchie is a delightfully easy collaboration because our aesthetic and attention to detail is extremely compatible.

F: For me, working as a Chicago Starlet, I’m part of a large company of girls directed by Michelle L’amour, which is fun and challenging; I love our grand group numbers. It is simply very different than working solo or working one-on-one with Jett. But any time more than one person is involved, there has to be collaboration. And collaborating with Jett is a dream. It is truly inspiring to work with him.

You will be up against Jett’s fellow Johnny, Ray Gunn, who is competing with Jeez Loueez. Are you looking forward to going up against them and enjoying some friendly rivalry? What do you think of the two of them as a partnership?

They are going down! No, of course we love Ray and Jeez. It’s fun to play at a rivalry, but in actuality, we don’t feel there is any rivalry, friendly or otherwise. And we’re focused on our goal to bring our very best performance to the most prestigious burlesque forum in the world. We’re delighted that we’ll be sharing a stage with Ray and Jeez, and Lola and Cherry, and we hope the judges will have a damn hard time choosing a winner. This category should be really fun to watch!

Do you plan to continue performing as a duo long term? What do you particularly admire about each other?

We absolutely plan to continue perform together as a duo!

Frenchie: When Jett and I discuss this duet, the conversation always turns to future acts, and it thrills me endlessly to hear we’re on the same page about continuing to work together. I truly love Jett for more reasons than I could ever say in this interview, but to give you a few juicy nuggets: I’ve long admired the way Jett can work any crowd into a lather. He is supportive and strong, and one of the most caring people I’ve had the luck to work with. His talent makes me want to be the best performer I can possibly be. And getting to caress his naked body is the carrot that keeps me moving forward. I want to bite his heart right out of his chest. We’re in it to win it!

Jett: I admire Frenchie immensely as a performer and as a human being. I have long been smitten with her warm energy and clever specificity on and off stage. I often say that only the details matter, and Miss Kiss is the Diva of Detail. She is a motivated, organised, disciplined task master, yet one of the most compassionate and considerate individuals I have met. She has the bravery not only to imagine, but to attempt the impossible, and the confidence and work ethic to make it happen. Mostly, though, I admire her ability to tassel-whip an egg white into meringue in no time flat.

What would be your ultimate dream burlesque super duo, if you could pair anyone up together, or name an existing or previous partnership?

Frenchie: One of my favorite Burlesque Hall of Fame memories was when Candy Baby Caramello asked Hot Toddy to be part of her act. They were quite a duo, and it was fabulous to watch. But I can’t answer this question without talking about my ultimate Super Duo: Trixie Little and the Evil Hate Monkey. Do they ever not impress? My respect for them is major.

Jett: They are amazing. But I think it would be even better if Monkey ditched Trixie and paired up with Satan’s Angel!

Ray Gunn and Jeez Loueez

Jeez Loueez and Ray Gunn  ©David McWhirter
Jeez Loueez and Ray Gunn ©David McWhirter

How did this glorious union begin?

Jeezy: In 2010 I started stalking the Stage Door Johnnies at Hydrate Nightclub. After a few nights sleeping outside their window, Ray Gunn found me unconscious and clutching a pair of briefs I swiped from the dressing room. They were kind enough not to call the authorities.

Ray: I’ve regretted it ever since.

Can you tell me about what you have planned for the pageant?

R: Absolutely not.

J: If we tell you… I’ll have to cut you. *side eye*

You are both such charismatic, physical performers – how have you concentrated and channelled that combined energy and sizzling sex appeal? Are you very much one unit or have you created opportunities to shine as individuals within the routine?

We think that’s part of what makes this act fun to do and fun for the audiences. We both have bold individual personalities that we showcase, but our movements and choreography are very much in sync. We channel a comedic rivalry and relationship but still keep the sextastic elements.

You will be up against fellow Johnny Jett, and Frenchie – what do you think of the two of them as a duo? Has there been any intimidation tactics or squaring up thus far?

R: I know where they live, I know where they strip.

J: And I also know what they did last summer. Just last week after leaving rehearsal with Ray I ran into Jett on the street and promptly threatened him with my extensive knife collection.

Do you plan to continue performing as a duo long term? What do you particularly admire about each other?

J: I don’t really know if I can handle that. Right now my thighs hurt from doing some type of crazy gymnastics cartwheel crap and honestly I’m concerned for my safety.

R: I actually have a restraining order set up immediately after the competition is over.

What would be your ultimate dream burlesque super duo, if you could pair anyone up together, or name an existing or previous partnership?

J: I’m sure that us working together is pretty much the highlight of Ray’s life.

R: *side eye* *flips hair* *stank face*

Lola Frost and Cherry OnTop

Lola Frost and Cherry OnTop  ©Black Opal Images
Lola Frost and Cherry On Top ©Black Opal Images

How/when did the two of you decide to pair up together?

L: I really liked her hair and thought, hmm, we could be a hair cut duo, just toss in some air guitars! Cherry and I have been working together in our troupe, Sweet Soul Burlesque for the past five years. It was natural to work as a duet as our fierce dance centred styles blended perfectly together. We were always the ones encouraging drop splits in group numbers, to the other girls’ dismay!

Tell us a bit about your troupe, Sweet Soul Burlesque. Does it help to have a previous working history together, and a shared experience of teamwork, or does this feel like a whole new dynamic?

L: There is not ‘I’ in team but there is an OnTop! Having already worked together helped us create a good understanding of each others’ styles and aesthetics. Although we have done another duet of dripping rad sauce where Cherry wears the black bobbed wig as well. I am not sure what it is about the power of my bob turning what seems like fast paced dance heavy routine into a hot lady stalking number!

Can you give us a peek into your BHoF 2012 schedule?

Off Stage – Poolside morning yoga, enlisting cabana boys for our sass army, worshipping the Legends, general fabulousity.

On Stage – A frenzied destruction of super hot sassy pants-free in-your-face sexy dance down.

You are up against two Johnnies, Miss Viva Las Vegas and a Chicago Starlet! What do you think of your competition?

We want to bone them all… Wait, what was the question? Who wants to be in a Frosty Cherry sandwich?!

Do you plan to continue performing as a duo long term? What do you particularly admire about each other?

Yes, we will work together until the end of the glitter wonderland!

C: I love Lola’s ability to drip hot sexy sauce all over the stage and not slip in it while she dances. She makes the whole audience grab their crotches in unison.

L: I worship Cherry for her ability to set people’s eyeballs on fire with her intense energy and ferocious style of dance. There is no other I have experienced like it. She is her own spirit animal.

What would be your ultimate dream burlesque super duo, if you could pair anyone up together, or name an existing or previous partnership?

Clams Casino and April O’Peel, Burgundy Brixx and Ophelia Flame, Midnite Martini and Harvest Moon… We could go on and on…

Cherry OnTop and Jett Adore, Lola Frost and Michelle L’amour. Just putting it out there guys!

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21st Century Burlesque
21st Century Burlesque

Quoted in major international newspapers and held in high esteem and affection by the international burlesque community, 21st Century Burlesque Magazine has documented the contemporary burlesque scene since 2007. Founded and edited by Holli-Mae Johnson.

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