Competing for the Crown: Gin Minsky (BHoF 2013)
Gin Minksy has answered my 2013 pre-BHoF Q&A, and she will take to the stage in a matter of weeks at the Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend 2013. I put something lighthearted and fun together this year, and requested some extra ‘media’ from each contender.
When I’m on stage, I feel… alive!
When I’m on stage, I want the audience to feel… alive! When I’m on stage, my job as a performer is to transport the audience to a different time and place. My hopes are that I can make them forget their ‘real life’ and whatever woes it may bring, for at least a few minutes, and transport them to a place of energy, happiness and excitement, and really feel this moment that they are a part of.
The Burlesque Hall of Fame is special and important to me because… it celebrates the ladies that paved the path for myself and all the other performers who are a part of this ever growing burlesque community. It is keeping the history of this art form alive, as well as preserving it so it will be around for generations to come.
I chose the act I am competing with because… I truly feel like it is my best number to date and I really love to perform it each and every time. I was also very excited by the idea of taking my big beautiful ballroom gown for a spin across that giant Orleans stage.
If I am crowned Queen… I will be utterly speechless. I started coming to BHoF when I was just starting to perform, and I had dreamed of being able to be on that stage – period. The fact that I’m now standing alongside so many incredible ladies that I admire is still amazing to me. If I do happened to be crowned Queen, I would definitely try to continue the legacy that Indigo Blue has started to pave (with ample Queen’s decrees, of course), and help promote the museum and the history that is so important to many of us.
If I could speak to myself when I was a new performer starting out, I would say/tell myself… be patient.
Something that few people know about me is… I went to art school (I had to shake out some cobwebs for that sketch) and am also a photographer. I won’t lie, I secretly really enjoy it when creeps ask for a shot of me and spew out some made-up camera lingo that is super incorrect.
I am happiest when… I am dancing – especially when it is with someone I love.
My greatest strength is… getting multiple things accomplished on a tight time frame.
My biggest vice is… ice cream.
My greatest fear is… not being able to accomplish everything that I want to in my lifetime.
If I could spend a day with any woman in history, past or present, it would have to be… Eva Tanguay. I’ve been slightly obsessed with her as of late. She was known as the ‘Queen of Vaudeville’ from the early 1900s to the 1920s, and she sounds like such an incredible lady (to give you an idea, some historians call her the Madonna or Lady Gaga of her time and she was one of Mae West’s big inspirations). I would love the opportunity to see her perform and hear her stories – even if a lot of them would be fabricated!
If I could have a superhero power, it would be… teleportation.
The best piece of advice I have ever been given is… something I heard from Julie Atlas Muz: the audience always wants you to succeed. No one in their right mind wants to pay money to see a performer fail on stage. Even when something goes horribly wrong, the audience still has your back and wants to see you pull through and persevere. While there are always exceptions, in most cases the audience is on your side!
If I could only watch one movie, hear one song and read one book for the rest of my life, they would be… Stormy Weather, La Vie En Rose by Louis Armstrong, and No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book that Made Vaudeville Famous by Trav SD.
The key to show-stopping striptease is… confidence, charisma, poise, musicality and timing.
My hopes for the future of burlesque are… that this community that we are building continues to grow and sustain itself, and that burlesque becomes a widely validated and accepted form of art.