Interviews

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Burlesque Interviews with the biggest and brightest names in burlesque and cabaret.

The Rise of Nox Falls

Have you ever made a bad decision you’ve always regretted? I know I have. But for one burlesque performer, a single lapse of judgement could have proved fatal. Four years later, they’ve come through the fire and are ready to be heard. Nox Falls, who has been a burlesque artist for eight years, describes their…

Vancouver Burlesque Co: Teaching, surviving and serving in a pandemic

How do you juggle a burlesque teaching business, hoards of students, newborn babies, and manage to stay sane in a global pandemic? One Canadian burlesque company and its three intrepid directors is making it work. The Vancouver Burlesque Co. was founded in 2011 by co-directors Cherry OnTop and Lola Frost, and Ariel Helvetica came on…

Jeez Loueez: Bigger Than Burlesque

Back in April, I sat down with Jeez Loueez – the No. 1 Most Influential Burlesque Industry Figure in the 2019 Burlesque TOP 50 – for an interview. Holli Mae Johnson had asked me if I would like to be the one to do it, as Jeez is my best friend, we live together, and…

Black Burlesque Directory makes all-white lineups and tokenism “inexcusable” says creator

Since 2010, Chicago-based, award-winning burlesque powerhouse Po’Chop has headlined shows across the US, starred in music videos and dance films, and performed at the Brooklyn Museum with Brown Girls Burlesque. She is also a board and cast member of Jeezy’s Juke Joint, an annual production created by Jeez Loueez in 2011 which showcases black burlesque…

Wild Flower: Zelia Rose on Locking Down and Finding Her Style

In the somewhat early days of lockdown, when life had abruptly ground to a halt the world over and the realization was settling in that it might stay that way, I spoke to burlesque star Zelia Rose via Zoom at home in Melbourne.  Keeping still doesn’t come naturally to Zelia, whose kinetic energy and electrifying…

Black Burlesque Queen Perle Noire Makes History with POC Pageant

In a 2016 interview with Jessica Price, burlesque powerhouse Perle Noire remarked that “any time a person of color reaches out to me with … complaint or they notice that other troupes aren’t featuring women of color, I always say: don’t present a problem, present a solution. If you feel that you’re not being represented,…

Jo Weldon: A Life Less Ordinary

Any journey into the modern history of the burlesque arts eventually leads to the devilishly lovely, spectacularly intelligent Jo ‘Boobs’ Weldon. Her name, like the celebrated body part it represents, precedes her. In the early aughts, her name popped up in books like Michelle Baldwin’s Burlesque and the New Bump-n-Grind alongside other New York City…

Dirty Martini: Past, Present and Future

After over a decade of conversations with Dirty Martini – burlesque icon, New York legend and all-round tease genius – there is always more to talk about. More memories from the birth of the modern revival. More illuminating insight. More self-deprecating authenticity. More and more passion for her art form with every passing year. Read…

Dita Von Teese: Enter the Glamonatrix

After 11 years of interviewing Dita Von Teese, her constant reinvention, evolution and endurance never fails to impress me. Instagram is teeming with Dita replicas wearing shameless copies of her iconic costumes and frolicking brazenly on all manner of imitation carousel horses, martini glasses and giant filigree hearts. None the less, Dita continues to reign…

Queen INGA

In 2011 I saw Inga Ingenue, a five foot revelation in pink and black stripes, perform her iconic Minnie the Moocher act at the Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend. It remains – after 14 years in burlesque – one of my absolute favourite acts, and INGA, as she is now known, is one of my…

Fire and Grit: The life of Satan’s Angel

Beloved burlesque legend Satan’s Angel has passed away after receiving critical care in hospital. To celebrate her life and contribution to burlesque, I am proud to re-publish this fascinating interview by Jo Weldon, who has recently relaunched her Burlesque Daily blog. Satan’s Angel was one of the first burlesque legends I met, I believe over…

She’s Back! Miss Astrid Opens her Mystery Box

“Legendary deadpan dominatrix” emcee Miss Astrid – aka comedian Kate Valentine – has been tearing strips off unsuspecting audience members in over 1000 shows since 1997. After a number of years out of the spotlight, “focusing on other things and raising my excellent kids,” she’s back onstage next week in Miss Astrid’s Mystery Box a…

Crescent City Burlesque: The Real New Orleans

In November I had the pleasure of attending the inaugural Crescent City Burlesque Weekender, a three-day celebration of New Orleans burlesque. The festival, produced by AJay Strong and Bella Blue, was held at the small, cavernous Allways Lounge in the Bywater (well removed from the Bourbon Street mayhem). Headliners Jeez Loueez, Darlinda Just Darlinda and…

Michelle L’amour Reveals Painful Secret in Emotional Video Statement

Yesterday evening, Michelle L’amour – Miss Exotic World 2005 and celebrated superstar of contemporary burlesque – unveiled a surprise video statement, revealing a painful disease she has lived with since childhood – Alopecia.

The Feral Feminism of Baby Got Back

  The F-word has been front and center throughout the world and at the forefront of discussion within the burlesque community of late. With ‘Nasty Women’ and ‘Bad Feminists’ globally speaking out on important women’s issues, it has been amazing to see how the burlesque community has been combining political expression into our body of…

Raven Noir: Burlesque in the Blood

Raven Noir, gothic mistress of northern Burlesque in the UK, sits down with Ivy Wilde to discuss her stage persona, opulent costumes, inspirations and renowned annual Blackpool show Burlesque Noir. After stumbling across burlesque, when a friend roped her into a ten week course for moral support, stage shy Raven discovered a family secret and…

Fancy Feather: The Flourish Behind the Fan Dance

As any burlesque aficionado knows, feathers play a huge part in our history. Most performers’ repertoire includes, or has included, feather fans. The minute Sally Rand stepped out at the 1933 Chicago World’s Fair and made her name, she popularised fan dancing for burlesque performers of the future. We recently caught up with Cindy Garland…

The Pastie Project: A Burlesque Costume History Book

The Pastie Project is a book by costume designer and burlesque performer Rosey La Rouge, featuring an archive of vintage and modern burlesque pasties contributed by performers and costumers from all over the world. Around two years ago, Rosey, who has a Master’s degree in Costume Design, started thinking about how she could contribute more to the…

Sadie Sinner: Cocoa Butter Queen

“The Cocoa Butter Club gives a voice to The Other.  We exist to promote the fact that performers of colour are creating in a multitude of mediums, and whilst our cabaret may not always look the same, please consider how artists draw on their past, present and futures and create work which reflects this.” After…

Egypt Blaque Knyle: Entitled

Egypt Blaque Knyle seems to have come out of nowhere to dominate nearly every major burlesque competition.  In three years, she has amassed over twenty titles, earning the No.38 spot on the 21st Century Burlesque Magazine Burlesque Top 50 2016.  Some have begun speculating about this dynamic performer’s background, her history, and just what causes…

Miss Judith Stein: Legendary

We invite you to enjoy Adele Wolf in conversation with one of the world’s best loved burlesque legends, the warm, witty and wise Miss Judith Stein, documenting her journey from college gogo dancer to burlesque headliner, and her ascendance to Legend at the Burlesque Hall of Fame.     Judith Stein began performing burlesque in…

Dita Von Teese Reborn in The Art of the Teese

In March, I visited Dita Von Teese at The Crazy Horse Paris during her sold out return to the legendary erotic cabaret. As we shared a thrilling interval in Crazy founder Alain Bernardin’s backstage office as mutual superfans, I detected a noticeable glow of confidence in burlesque’s most famous and opulent star.  Little did I…

La Soiree Star Hamish McCann in Pole Position

One of La Soiree’s brightest, hottest and jaw-droppingly fabulous stars is boylesque acrobat Hamish McCann, and we spoke to him about his iconic, roof-raising pole routine, which you can catch in London for the next few weeks…

Vivien of Holloway: A Pinup Paradise

If you think of authentic pin up fashion in the UK, you think of Vivien of Holloway – the two simply go hand in hand. Vivien of Holloway have long been a supporter of the burlesque and vintage entertainment industry, sponsoring events up and down the UK. Their Holloway Road store offers an exclusive styling…

Burlesque In 20: Blaze, The Red Rose of Texas

In a new interview series, celebrated burlesque performers answer twenty questions which document their career to date and their thoughts on contemporary burlesque, present and future. Blaze, The Red Rose of Texas is the first to tackle the interview.   Name: Blaze, the Red Rose of Texas Home location: Dallas, Texas Years performing: Five Training: Tap, Jazz and…

Ursula Undressed: The Magic of Martinez

Like the fabled, festive Coca Cola truck, five star smash La Soiree has rolled into London again this Christmas with a twinkling Spiegeltent full of sass, smut, surprise, and sensational skill. We spoke to one of La Soiree‘s most celebrated heroines, Ursula Martinez, as she marks fifty fabulous years of life, laughter, and lewd, nude burlesque brilliance! (Hanky…

7 Brazilian Burlesque Bombshells Worth Knowing

Miss Indigo Blue – Miss Exotic World, Reigning Queen of Burlesque 2011 and headmistress of the pioneering Academy of Burlesque – shines a light on some burlesque treasure from Brazil… Although we’re on opposite sides of the equator, Brazil and the US have always had a fascinating cultural exchange.  I’ve been to Brazil many times,…

Costume and Conversation with Burlesque Legend Bic Carrol

Electra Mourning recounts an unforgettable learning experience at the Austin Academy of Burlesque in August, where she attended Costuming Tips and Tricks with burlesque legend Bic Carrol.   I was extremely nervous about taking a costuming class with Bic Carrol. His reputation as a two-time recipient of the Las Vegas Costumer of the Year award…

Perle Noire: A Beautiful Imperfection

In 1984 Dick Clark of American Bandstand asked a very young, very ambitious Madonna what her dreams were, to which she paused for a beat before replying in total seriousness: “To rule the world.” As anyone who knows international burlesque star Perle Noire can attest, the renowned multi-hyphenate artist (performer, mentor, and most recently, producer…

Angie Pontani: From Showgirl to Showmom

New York burlesque star Angie Pontani (Miss Exotic World, Reigning Queen of Burlesque 2008) is an inspirational woman I have always admired. As a fellow monster multi-tasker, I often have a WWAD (What Would Angie Do) moment when I think I can’t possibly do ALL THE THINGS for another second. When Angie revealed she was…

Perle Noire Builds Her House

To see Perle Noire is to be instantly dazzled. You can tell she’s a rock star simply by the way she enters the stage. She combines her natural talent with relentless hard work and investment, and has become one of the most desireable stars on the international burlesque circuit today. Hotly pursued as an instructor,…

Burlesque Shines Bright at Hundred Watt Club (UK Burlesque)

Having recently celebrated their fifth birthday in the venue where it all began, the Hundred Watt Club is showing no sign of slowing down. Ivy Wilde caught up with Lena Mae to find out about how it all began and what they have in store for the future.   The Hundred Watt Club “I’d been…

Gin House Burlesque: Stripping with a Swing

21st Century Burlesque Magazine thoroughly enjoyed Gin House Burlesque at The King’s Head – a spectacular, hidden jewel box in East London, commandeered by sparkling showgirls and a swarm of stylish revellers. Ivy Wilde discusses the superbly executed concept with co-creators Betsy Rose, Missy Fatale and Jolie Papillon.     When did the idea for…

From Root Canals to Bukaki: A Conversation with Julie Atlas Muz

While I had every intention of conducting a very earnest, professional and polite interview with Julie Atlas Muz, one half of the headlining husband (Mat Fraser) and wife team at the upcoming Vancouver International Burlesque Festival, May 6 and 7th, things somehow went off the rails very quickly. In the best possible way, mind you,…

Inspirational Instructors: Bella Blue, New Orleans School of Burlesque

As burlesque has grown, so has its educational base. The teachers of burlesque make a distinct mark on the development of burlesque in their respective regions, and often help students not just with performing basics but with an understanding of the history and business of burlesque. New Orleans performer, instructor and entrepreneur Bella Blue began…

Torquay Tease: The Rise of Kinky & Quirky (UK Burlesque)

In 2007 a chance chat via a MySpace page brought Sarah and Mark Bell together. Eight weeks later Mark moved to Devon from Wales and a month later Kinky & Quirky was born. Nine years on and Kinky & Quirky is known for its jaw-dropping events with the cream of the crop in variety, cabaret…

Dita Von Teese: Making Her Mark

Since our previous interviews in 2012, Dita Von Teese’s career has been a breathtaking trajectory of achievements and appearances, and I felt it was high time I checked in. We had a lot to discuss: a new, glossy tome of beauty advice and philosophy, a purring vinyl record, an upcoming return to Crazy Horse Paris and a…

Cocktails, Costume and Concept with Kitten LaRue and Lou Henry Hoover

Burlesque costume queen Viv Clicquot sat down with Burlesque TOP 50 No. 1 2015 Kitten LaRue and Lou Henry Hoover – aka Kitten ‘n’ Lou – for cocktails and costume chat… “So tell me. Who and what are you wearing?!”  Showing up as nothing less than their usual and inimitable glorious selves, I interviewed the…

Together We Can-Can: Life as a Moulin Rouge Showgirl

I am thrilled to present this special feature about sensational showgirl Claudine Van Den Bergh, who I had the pleasure of interviewing backstage at the legendary Moulin Rouge, Paris. After passing through a hidden door and an intriguing labyrinth of dressing rooms and studios,  I was shown into a room with a mannequinned row of eye-wateringly fabulous costumes. The view was…

Interview: Cece Sinclair – Blossoming British Burlesquer

In the second of three interviews, sensational British burlesque newcomer Cece Sinclair is interviewed by Ivy Wilde… Performing for just over 18 months, Cece Sinclair is taking the UK by storm.  Moving to Manchester from a small Welsh town to study for a Performing Arts degree, Cece found her feet performing in the freedom of…

Interview: Felicity Furore – Blossoming British Burlesquer

Felicity Furore is the first of three outstanding newcomers to British burlesque we would like to introduce to the international community. Ivy Wilde interviewed her recently in London… 24 year old Felicity Furore has been performing for two and half years from her London base. Studying Costume Design at university, it was only after her…

Stepping Down in Style: Midnite Martini at Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend 2015

The star-studded and heartfelt step-down of 2014’s Queen of Burlesque was a highlight of this year’s Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend. The ever-elegant Midnite Martini shared a few words with Crystal Tassels about the competition after Sunday night’s showcase. 21st Century Burlesque Magazine Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend 2015 Coverage is sponsored by Fancy Feather. How…

Paula Now and Then: Rocking the Pants Off Seattle Since 1987

Every spring, celebrated producer Paula Sjunneson (of paulanowevent, formerly The Swedish Housewife Presents) brings some legendary magic to the Triple Door in Seattle. Her burlesque-cum-rock-opera, House of Thee Unholy, is “a Tolkienian acid trip” that paints a dripping, sexy portrait of the 1970s, all set to a soundtrack of Led Zeppelin, which is played live…

Exclusive: Interview with Bella Blue, Lucky Pierre’s Burlesque Producer

I have just concluded a Skype call with Bella Blue, producer of The Blue Book Cabaret at Lucky Pierre’s, regarding her decision to stop working at the venue and her feelings about the past weekend. As most of you will know at this point, burlesque performer Ruby Rage was dropped by the venue, apparently due…

Burleskathon: World Record Striptease

Back in March 2014, performers from all corners of Australia convened on Melbourne to take part in a world record attempt for 24 hours of continuous burlesque performances. Burleskathon ran from 12pm noon on Saturday the 22nd to 12pm noon on the Sunday the 23rd and was organised to the tiniest detail by Dolores Daiquiri…

PODCAST: Best of Burlesque and Cabaret London 2014

21st Century Burlesque Magazine editor Holli-Mae Johnson and editor-in-chief of This Is Cabaret Franco Milazzo sat down with the delightful Rosie Kohl in her cosy sitting room just before Christmas and discussed their 2014 highlights, picked out from all the London burlesque and cabaret shows they attended and reviewed over the course of the year. …

Sublime Boudoir: Seduction of Senses

For a second year, I am proud to say that the Burlesque TOP 50 sponsor is the incredible Sublime Boudoir, a team of creative specialists who put on a one of a kind, spectacular theatrical event every year at a different global location. I experienced a Sublime Boudoir event in 2013 when they brought A…

The Atomic Bombshells Celebrate Ten Glamorous Years in Burlesque

The Atomic Bombshells Celebrate Ten Glamorous Years in Burlesque, by Crystal Tassels. It seems like 2004 was a big year for burlesque. On one side of North America, Doc Wasabassco produced his first (three-hour long) burlesque show and started a New York institution. On the Pacific side, a dancer from New Orleans convinced a venue…

Trixie Little and The Evil Hate Monkey Reveal All in ‘Us, Naked’ Documentary

Superstar burlesque duo Trixie Little and The Evil Hate Monkey have long been darlings of the international circus and cabaret scene, producing world class magic on stage together for over a decade. Now, we have an amazing opportunity to see what happens offstage as well as they travel all over the world together sharing the…

Interview: Doc Wasabassco – 10 Years in Burlesque (Part Two)

As their spectacular 10th Anniversary Extravaganza approaches, Sydni Deveraux‘s interview with burlesque producer Doc Wasabassco continues. Read Part One here. Often our conversations around all of this turn to pay. I’ve been an advocate of raising the pay in Seattle, and now that I’m in New York I feel it’s the same issue in a…

Interview: Doc Wasabassco – 10 Years in Burlesque (Part One)

The Philosophy of a Doctor: Wasabassco Celebrates 10 Years in New York City by Sydni Deveraux For me it started three years ago when Doc Wasabassco flew me out to New York City to participate in their 7th anniversary weekend. What I didn’t know is that a bond would form that would inform my decision…

Speaking with Legends: April March ‘The First Lady of Burlesque’

In a new series, Adele Wolf interviews our treasured burlesque legends, revealing more about their lives and careers. She kicks off the series by speaking to April March, ‘The First Lady of Burlesque’… I had known of April March for quite some time when I finally had the honour of meeting her at this year’s…

Interview: Christina Manuge of Manuge Et Toi (Burlesque Costume)

Opening a series on burlesque costume, legendary performer, author and instructor Jo Weldon interviews noted burlesque costumier Christina Manuge of Manuge Et Toi. I worked as a costumer for feature dancers in the early 1990s while I was healing from a car accident and couldn’t dance, and although I had been able to sew since…

Australian Burlesque Association: Interview with Bella De Jac

Australian burlesque performer and academic Lola The Vamp interviews Bella De Jac about the Australian Burlesque Museum and Australian Burlesque Association, with additional information provided about the special photographs accompanying the interview. Australian burlesque history is quite different to both European and American burlesque history. The scattering of information we currently have indicates a lot…

Charlene Taylor: The Truth Behind the Tabloids

In July the burlesque community responded with anger when certain UK newspapers published intentionally humiliating stories about new burlesque performer and aspiring singer Charlene Taylor.  In what has become typically underhand behaviour from the likes of the Daily Mail, Charlene was deceived and mislead into thinking that her humble message of hope and survival would…

INTERVIEW: Midnite Martini, Reigning Queen of Burlesque 2014

Midnite Martini’s recent victory at the Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend has been praised and celebrated as a refreshing, encouraging, delightful surprise, and those of you who read her pre-pageant interview will know that we almost didn’t get to see her stunning winning act.  Everything fell into place for this undoubtedly innovative and passionate artist…

INTERVIEW: Angie Pontani

When I planned my schedule for the New York Burlesque Festival 2013, one of the first priorities was to arrange my first proper conversation with festival co-producer and Miss Exotic World 2008, Angie Pontani. We certainly made up for lost time with a long and interesting discussion, an updated edit of which I present to…

Interview: Joyce Tang, BHoF Weekend Executive Producer (BHoF 2014)

With only a few days to go until the Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend 2014, I am pleased to present an interview with Executive Producer Joyce Tang. Joyce plays a vital and demanding role in making each Weekender run smoothly and ensuring the historic event’s survival, and I was keen to find out more about…

Gowning Around with Catherine D’Lish

Interview with Catherine D’Lish by Jo Weldon. Catherine D’Lish is known for inventive, hyperglam, spectacular costuming. Her standard-setting work with Dita Von Teese is best known to many, but Catherine is constantly creating fresh, innovative designs, items that strike us as iconic immediately, working with fabric and trim in new and inspiring ways. Most recently…

Pillow Talk with Bazuka Joe: Ginger Valentine

Hunky Stage Door Johnny Bazuka Joe has started interviewing fabulous burlesque performers and personalities he encounters on his travels to festivals and other shows, and now I can share them with you on 21st Century Burlesque Magazine! In this episode, Joe interviews Texan temptress Ginger Valentine… ) And now, enjoy this video of Ginger Valentine,…

INTERVIEW: The Schlep Sisters – Minnie Tonka and Darlinda Just Darlinda. (Partnerships Series)

With their tenth anniversary celebration coming up this Saturday (March 8th – see details below), it’s the perfect moment to finally interview two of the most warm, intelligent and face-achingly hilarious women I know, and document a decade of achievement in words and photos.  As The Schlep Sisters and as soloists, Minnie Tonka and Darlinda…

Michelle L’amour and Russell Bruner Discuss Their FABULOUS New Duet [Photo and Video]

Burlesque peers and fans collectively swooned last week when the video of Michelle L’amour and Russell Bruner’s new duet, debuted at The Big Sexy Show on February 14th in Chicago, hit the internet.  And what a fascinating double act they are: asstastic burlesque superstar Michelle L’amour, known for spellbinding grace, hilarious viral videos and unrelenting…

Pillow Talk with Bazuka Joe: Burlesque Legend Judith Stein

Hunky Stage Door Johnny Bazuka Joe has started interviewing fabulous burlesque performers and personalities he encounters on his travels to festivals and other shows, and now I can share them with you on 21st Century Burlesque Magazine! In this episode, Joe interviews delightful Canadian burlesque legend Judith Stein… And now, enjoy Judith Stein’s sensational performance…

Interview: The Rise and Rise of the Helsinki Burlesque Festival

The Helsinki Burlesque Festival, now in its seventh year, is one of the trendiest and increasingly high profile events on the burlesque calendar and attracts a steady stream of burlesque heavyweight headliners, including Dirty Martini, Angie Pontani, Tigger!, Trixie Little and the Evil Hate Monkey, and burlesque legends Satan’s Angel and Isis Starr.  This year,…

Desert Island Strips, Episode 1: Dangrrr Doll

In a new series, neo genius Nasty Canasta interviews various burlesque figures and asks the following question: “If you were to be cast away on a desert island, which three striptease numbers, one burlesque performer, and single act of your own would you bring along to keep yourself sane and entertained?” The first castaway to…

Exposed: Julie Atlas Muz and Mat Fraser (Partnerships Series)

As they kick off a UK tour of their hit show Beauty and the Beast, and feature in a new burlesque documentary by Beth B, EXPOSED, I continue my Partnerships Series by interviewing trailblazing, hilarious and heavy hitting power couple Julie Atlas Muz and Mat Fraser. For the benefit of those who are new to…

Tansy: Eager To Lose

“Welcome to the legendary Tim Tam Room, where the music sizzles, champagne flows, and dancing beauties tempt and tease. When Tansy, the club’s crown jewel, announces her imminent departure, the club’s MC is left holding his heart in his hands. Exuberant hijinks and salacious striptease collide as this night of classic burlesque unspools into a…

Frenchie Kiss and Jett Adore. (Partnerships Series)

My Partnerships Series continues with Frenchie Kiss and Jett Adore.  This dynamic, creative and affectionate duo have won coveted awards at The Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend, separately as members of groups (Frenchie with The Chicago Starlets, and Jett as one third of The Stage Door Johnnies), and together as ‘Best Duo’ in 2012.  Read…

Interview: Burlesque Legend Tammi True

On Thursday, July 11th, nearly 400 people attended the premiere of True Tales at the historic Texas Theatre in Dallas. True Tales tells the story of Tammi True, a dancer at the Carousel Club, and her relationship with the notorious owner, Jack Ruby. Jack Ruby shot Lee Harvey Oswald, the man who, according to government…

Stage Door Johnnies: Post-BHoF Recap

After a phenomenal appearance at the Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend 2013, the universally admired and adored Stage Door Johnnies – Bazuka Joe, Ray Gunn and Jett Adore – had a post-Weekend chat with me, explaining the hard work and planning behind each performance and describing their emotions and future plans… First, congratulations to our…

Jo Weldon Interviews Dixie Evans

I visited with Dixie Evans in June of this year. It was the first time I’d gotten to see her since her stroke. She was in a very comfortable recovery center, in a house rather than a facility. When I arrived she was asleep in a recliner, wearing a spangled feathered headband. The moment she…

Interview: Laurie Hagen (Part Two.)

Read Laurie Hagen Part One… The fascinating Laurie Hagen interview continues. At the end of Part One, we were discussing her early career… Laurie Hagen: I danced in musicals for a few years and I ended up dancing in Beauty and the Beast in the West End as one of the original cast members, which…

Interview: Laurie Hagen (Part One.)

Laurie Hagen is, hands down, one of the most multi-talented, endearing, dedicated and creative women I have ever met, with an inspiring story to tell. When I first saw Laurie Hagen perform, years ago now, I knew I had seen something very special, and I was thrilled when I read and heard the reaction to…

INTERVIEW: LouLou D’vil

LouLou D’vil, a fabulous Finn who embodies the golden age of classic striptease, was crowned Miss Exotic World 2013, the Reigning Queen of Burlesque on Saturday, June 1st at the Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend. I have enjoyed spending more time with LouLou recently, and when we hung out in London a couple of weeks…

Catherine D’Lish: London Bound

Catherine D’Lish will be hitting the UK next week, and she shares all the details about the trip and upcoming performances here with 21st Century Burlesque Magazine… You kick off your UK appearances at the Hebden Bridge Burlesque Festival in Bradford on May 17th. What do you plan to perform? I’m very happy to have…

INTERVIEW: Melody Sweets

I am pleased to present an interview with the beautiful, charming and incredibly talented Melody Sweets.  I finally got the chance to see Melody perform live in 2011, when I was invited to see the smash hit show Absinthe with other Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend attendees.  The show was incredible, and she was incredible…

Part Three: Race and Burlesque – The Interviews

Here is the final part of the Race and Burlesque: The Curious Case of the Performer of Colour interviews. Conducted by Chocolat the Extraordinaire. (Click on the performer names to visit their websites.) The Shanghai Pearl What drew you to burlesque? I was always drawn to old pornographic ephemera, and then, because of that fascination,…

Part Two: Race and Burlesque – The Interviews

Here is Part Two of the full Race and Burlesque: The Curious Case of the Performer of Colour interviews. Conducted by Chocolat the Extraordinaire. (Click on the performer names to visit their websites.) Sydni Deveraux What drew you to burlesque? Why did you start performing? I found burlesque in 2005. I was already a jazz…

Part One: Race and Burlesque – The Interviews

Your response to last week’s special feature, Race and Burlesque: The Curious Case of the Performer of Colour, has been amazing, and you can now read the full interviews with the contributing performers. Conducted by Chocolat the Extraordinaire. (Click on the performer names to visit their websites.) Perle Noire What drew you to burlesque? Why…

INTERVIEW: Miss Polly Rae

Over the past five years, my regard for Polly Rae has progressed from awareness, to interest, to hesitation, to respect, to a growing friendship and affection. I first saw Polly and the Hurly Burly Girlys in action at the Soho Revue Bar in 2007, but it was when I spent time with them backstage at…

INTERVIEW: Michelle L’amour and Franky Vivid (Partnerships Series)

When I planned out my Partnerships Series, this couple were always a priority for me. Spending time with Michelle and Franky is a joy, and their partnership is truly inspiring. Together they have put Chicago firmly and proudly on the burlesque map, and have created a series of exceptional shows and events. I’m constantly moved…

Ten Years of Trixie and Monkey (Partnerships Series)

Trixie Little and The Evil Hate Monkey are an incredibly skilled, charming and dedicated burlesque super duo, and they have been entertaining us and contributing to the burlesque community for ten years. Also a couple off stage, Monkey surprised Trixie on their tenth anniversary with a marriage proposal, and I couldn’t wish them more joy…

INTERVIEW: Dita von Teese and Catherine D’Lish (Partnerships Series)

Introducing the first online interview in my new ‘Perfect Partnerships’ series. When I sat down to think about the burlesque partnerships that I wanted to examine and celebrate, two exceptional women were at the top of the list, and when Dita suggested the interview herself a short time afterwards I couldn’t wait to get started.…

WINNERS INTERVIEW: Imogen Kelly, Reigning Queen of Burlesque, 2012.

Presenting our new Reigning Queen of Burlesque, Miss Exotic World, 2012 – Imogen Kelly! I am so pleased that Imogen Kelly has been recognised and rewarded for a fantastic performance; a performance that symbolises her incredible talent, creativity, dedication, vision, and years of hard work and contributions as a contemporary pioneer in Australia. Her victory…

Strip Strip Hooray!: A Conversation with Dita Von Teese

by Jessica Price In April I had the unparalleled pleasure of speaking with Dita Von Teese about her upcoming West Coast tour, her dazzling co-stars, the merits of dressage, and the peculiar momentum one needs when wearing a gown encrusted with Swarovski crystals. Those who follow Dita’s career closely may already have a sense of…

BHoF 2012: An Interview with Dustin Wax

In December 2011, Laura Herbert, after years of invaluable service, stepped down from her role as Acting Executive Director of the Burlesque Hall of Fame, and was succeeded by Curatorial Director, Dustin Wax. Laura remains the President of the Board of Directors, and has expressed her high regard for Dustin and his abilities.  I have…

The Chicago Starlets

The Chicago Starlets – Michelle L’amour’s burlesque supergroup; a captivating chorus line of bright, beautiful women who each began by attending and advancing through the classes at Studio L’amour. They regularly perform in long running, L’amour-produced shows in Chicago, and have repeatedly entertained the audience at The Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend, winning ‘Best Group’…

INTERVIEW: Roxi DLite

I am pleased to present a long and interesting conversation with Roxi DLite; a lady that seemed to appear from nowhere a few years ago and joined the ranks of burlesque royalty with astonishing speed. In what seemed like no time at all she was on stage at The Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend in…

BVB: An Interview with Kiki Kaboom

London-based performer Kiki Kaboom is a trained actress, singer and burlesque dancer. Whilst she’s been on the burlesque circuit for only a couple of years, she’s worked that circuit with gusto, acquiring impressive CV achievements on her way. She’s the winner of ‘Best London Performer 2009’ at the London Burlesque Festival 2009 with her Geek…

Dita von Teese talks Cocktails, Clubs and Catwalks…

Dita is literally everywhere at the moment. On stages all over the world, on film, on screen, on menus, even on bottles! There are cocktails and desserts named after her, an interactive virtual mansion inhabited by her, and now a private club is about to spring up in Paris for a month, filled from ceiling…

Immodesty Blaize

The phrase ‘larger than life’ is used so often, but I rarely meet someone that it truly applies to. With a name inspired by a comic book heroine; Immodesty Blaize is in many ways exactly that – an exquisitely exaggerated, impossibly glamorous force of female nature. She has an incredible physical presence, towering over most…

Your Number One: Miss Dirty Martini!

I am proud to present a brand new interview with Neo Burlesque icon Dirty Martini, the Number One Burlesque Performer of 2009 – as voted by thousands of you in the end-of-year countdown! I have so enjoyed the opportunity to get to know even more about Dirty and explore her past, present and future in…

Interview: Michelle L’amour

Michelle L’amour is someone I find endlessly fascinating. She is warm and charming to speak to, with a delicious laugh and composed demeanour. But when she takes to the stage a sexual power and captivating energy exudes from her, whether she’s floating across the stage with her fans or whipping the audience into a frenzy…

Dita in Paris…

This week, I spoke to Dita about her recent and upcoming plans in ‘La Ville-Lumière’ – a city forever close to her heart… Dita performs ‘Lazy’, at The Crazy Horse Paris (©Antoine Poupel) You have recently wrapped up all of the performance and recording at The Crazy Horse, and soon you will be back in…

Kalani Kokonuts: Part Two

Part Two of the epic and exclusive interview with Kalani Kokonuts… (Click here to read Part One…) Kalani Performing… Kalani Kokonuts, by Mark Hollinger. H. This will probably embarrass you, but you have, and everyone says this, an incredible body, physical presence and unique beauty – K. This is the one thing – I can…

Kalani Kokonuts: Part One

A month ago, sitting beside Kalani in her tranquil, beautiful home, just days after the Burlesque Hall of Fame pageant, recording the following interview, I felt both priviliged and excited. Privileged, because Kalani had, despite her shyness and desire for privacy, had invited us in to look around her house and stay to chat (And…

Catherine D’Lish

I recall my first Tease-o-Rama experience, in SanFransisco. I still didn’t reach the 21 age limit in America and some extremely inventive tactics were employed to get me through the doors of some of the great state-side burlesque events (or failing that, lashings of old-fashioned charm). But thank the Good Lord I got there in…

INTERVIEW: Dita Von Teese

Everyone has an opinion on Dita Von Teese, some of which are unapologetically judgemental or negative, but there are those who are big enough to admit, none the less, that if it were not for Dita, they would never have discovered burlesque, cheesecake, even erotica. They would not be part of the communities they enjoy,…