Khandie’s Kholumn Part 8: Not Smelling of Roses All The Time Then?

Khandie's Kholumn


The bad side of burlesque? Does that really exist in this day when women know their rights and stand up for themselves with the assertion of a warrior going into battle? It would appear that, to the dismay of us on the proverbial circuit, that it does indeed.

Whether it’s promoters not promoting effectively, performers not being paid or simply mistreated at shows, the bad side of burlesque is alive and kicking…

I have heard many a performer (or artiste, if you will) commenting on some events in a negative way. Now, we all have our grumbles with shows; be it the small dressing room or lack of nearby parking, but this is not the sort of thing I am alluding to. I have had my fair share of run-in’s with less professional people than I. Sorry I can’t pay you Khandie – I am having trouble with my bankcard. Well that’s all fine and dandy love, but this has been going on for a few months! Khandie needs paying! Oh sorry – is that rude? Really? Well not as rude as having me to perform then not being paid. MARVELLOUS darling.

I hate it when my name is spelt wrong on a poster; it’s KHANDIE KHISSES! Not Kandie Kisses or Khandi Kisses or any other concoction of lettering you can come up with. Its K-H-A-N-D-I-E K-H-I-S-S-E-S. Spelling it wrong on the poster is forgivable, but then to continually write it everywhere wrong despite being corrected puts my nose out of joint (do noses have joints…? But I digress). It makes me doubt the professionalism of the whole show. Surely you check the name of your booked performers? No? Oh ok – shall I start making up random names for your shows as well? Didn’t think so!

Backstage at a show can sometimes be a very nerve racking experience, depending on the performers. You are usually clumped together in a small, badly lit room, jostling for a space on the smudged mirror whilst attempting to check the other performers costumes. Tempers can flair and nerves can be touched, but luckily most of us know that this is all part and parcel of the whole experience. What I don’t expect is for a performer to fly into a high almighty diva fit demanding EVERYONE to stop getting in her way! Bah! Get over yourself love. Newbies and veterans alike – we all get in each other’s way whether we mean to or not. So get off your high horse and come play in the sandpit with the rest of us; your shouts are deafening me! No one likes a diva – they only look silly.

Some performers have commented on photographs being unexpectedly taken of them while they are getting ready in the dressing room, without their prior knowledge or consent. Is this not a gross invasion of privacy? If the performers know beforehand, then crack on and shoot away, but to me there is something dodgy about an organiser who invites photographers into the changing rooms but doesn’t tell his performers. Backstage images can be lovely, but seek approval from the performers first for pity’s sake – that way everyone is happy.

Sure as the sky is blue (though more grey this time of year in the UK) and the grass is green, burlesque will have its dodgy dealers and divas alike. We should not be afraid to stand our ground and say ‘belt up love!’ or ‘payment please’. We each earn the rate to grace that stage and be rewarded for it, be it monetary or simply the best gift of all: applause from an entertained audience. Burlesque is about fun so quit your stupid antics; otherwise Khandie Khisses is going to come over there and slap your bums!

Short and spiky column this time my darlings but I am afraid I am fed up of hearing about performers being taken advantage of and divas.

Time to stand and show what our tassels are made of!

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