Originally from Montreal, Canada, Foxy Lexxi attended a live burlesque show seven years ago and it was love at first strip. After studying under The Lady Josephine and BonBon Bombay, she went on to become an award winning international performer. In 2018, she became the first Canadian to be crowned Miss Viva Las Vegas at the Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekender.
Foxy is the first burlesque star to answer 21st Century Burlesque’s 21 Questions.
1. How would you define yourself in three words?
Casuallyextra, fierce and silly.
2. Who would play you in a movie about your life?
I’d die to be played by Beyoncé!
3. What is your biggest strength?
Me! My self-respect, personal integrity and powerful energy. I don’t compromise my principles, work ethics or anything else just to facilitate things. I stick to my guns no matter what.
4. What is your biggest weakness?
Constant doubt. I’m an overthinker and question myself and everything else often – a bit too much.
5. When are you most happy and inspired?
When I am with my friends and the love of my life.
6. What is your favourite on-screen burlesque moment from film or TV?
There are a lot of small moments in my life that led me to burlesque and I didn’t even realize it. I would say the first seeds were Jessica Rabbit in Who Framed Roger Rabbit and Salma Hayek as the snake dancer in From Dusk Till Dawn. Can we talk about the “drink by my foot” moment? My jaw was on the floor!
7. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received?
‘Actions speak louder than words’, and ‘be yourself because nobody else can be you’.
8. If you could switch lives with one person for a day, who would it be?
Anybody questioning or critiquing our art form and lifestyle. I want them to understand how hard this really is: trying to balance being an artist, performer, business person and family person all at the same time. I would also like them to experience how liberating and healing it can be.
9. What’s the biggest myth or misconception about burlesque?
The movie Burlesque got a lot of people thinking that is burlesque. It’s not. And lots of people think we do what we do for the ‘wrong reasons’. It’s unfortunate.
10. If you could only perform to one song for the rest of your life, what would it be?
I would go with When You’re Good to Mama from the Chicago movie soundtrack.
11. What surprisingly useful things do you have in your show case?
Sooo many things! I don’t know – maybe scissors?
12. Do you have a backstage ritual?
I find a little space where I can be alone and give myself a pep talk, listen to my song and visualize myself on stage with the right mindset and energy.
13. What advice would you give to new performers starting out today?
Live and learn first; know who you are and accept it. Don’t try to be somebody you’re not. Then research, study, experience, and learn to love and enjoy the process because nothing comes overnight. Expect hard times and hard work. This isn’t an easy path to travel on, but it’s highly rewarding in the end.
14. What is your proudest achievement?
My daughter, and when I won my first burlesque competition on my first attempt.
15. What is your biggest regret?
Not trusting myself earlier in life.
16. What is the biggest challenge facing today’s burlesque scene?
Being recognized for your actual talent and hard work instead of what you have and/or look like. There’s still a number of improvements to be made in terms of the treatment of POC in burlesque. It’s not easy at all as a dark-skinned person in this business.
17. If you could go back and tell yourself one thing when you started out in burlesque, what would it be?
Do you, booboo! You will win some and lose some, people will come and go, you will drop tears of both sadness and joy, and experience heartbreaks and madness. But at the end of the day, you will rise to become who you really are and have the time of your life.
18. What is a cause or issue that’s very important to you?
Inequality and the disparity between social classes. I want to see all people, not just black people, live better and healthier, but we still have a long way to go in redressing the ways black people are treated all over the world. We need to remember we are kings, queens and unicorns – not the descendants of slaves.
19 What are you currently reading, watching, and listening to?
I’m still reading and revisiting Robert Greene’s The 48 Laws of Power.
20. If you could share a dressing room with one performer for the rest of your career, who would it be?
Tough to call, this one. I think my burly sister Zyra Lee because she’s such a great cheerleader.
21. What would you like your life and career to look like in 10 years time?
Honestly, I just want to be healthy enough to perform and do what I love. Otherwise, if I could own a cabaret venue to provide a safe space where my fellow performers could work their magic and be treated with respect and properly paid, I would be absolutely thrilled!
Check out Foxy Lexxi’s fashion merch Casually Extra. Non-binary T-shirts, crewnecks and hoodies, with more to come.