The Burlesque TOP 50 2010: No. 3
Jo ‘Boobs’ Weldon
“I love Jo Boobs. When you need an academic diatribe about the importance of burlesque in a gorgeous package served with sex appeal, intelligence and love, that’s Jo! This woman is passionate about burlesque and can recreate the sex appeal of the genre lost long ago.
In an era where the sex is surgically removed from images of women in the media and even in our own art form, Jo’s performances remind us that sex is the main thing that we’re all looking at here. She’s hot, daring and a red head that fulfills the goal of real old school burlesque – tit-tillation!”
“Jo is one of the true champions of the burlesque world … Hearing her speak, seeing her teach, and marveling at the way she has been the driving force behind successful events is a real pleasure for me!”
One of the great burlesque intellectuals of our time, and one of the best teachers you could ever hope to learn from; Jo Weldon is held in high respect and great affection by the global community.
Headmistress of the New York School of Burlesque – Jo is one of the most gifted instructors we could possibly recommend. Every subtle gesture and sensual movement is described and explained, every detail of performance has a significance and effect.
In 2010, Jo performed at BHoF, the New Orleans Burlesque Festival, and sent temperatures soaring at the Toronto Burlesque Festival. At the New York Burlesque Festival, she was voted, ‘Most Likely to Release a Tell-All Biography’ at the Golden Pastie Awards. (Now THAT we would read!)
She performed a beautiful tribute to Sherry Britton at the very special Mothers of Burlesque show on Mother’s Day in New York, which was attended by Dee Milo and Toni Elling, and introduced via video by Dixie Evans, with wonderful tributes from contemporary performers. She also travelled to the UK to perform in London, and teach at Dadalesque in Liverpool.
But for many, her most significant and celebrated contribution this year is her book – The Burlesque Handbook. It was everything we hoped for and more – beautiful photographs, witty anecdotes, quotes and tips from the burlesque greats – past and present, diagrams, how-to’s, context, history… There are things for newcomers and the more established to discover and enjoy.
Jo continues to work closely with The Burlesque Hall of Fame as their Education Director; coordinating workshops and classes and furthering awareness and education. She also works with Indigo Blue as a co-curator of BurlyCon in Seattle.
When she isn’t teaching or performing, Jo runs a fascinating blog (on which you can see many of her beautiful photographs), produces instructional DVDs, and often appears on television and radio. Recently, many of her appearances and interviews have focussed on the recent Hollywood movie, Burlesque – and we were delighted to discover that Jo features in a series of webisodes in connection with the movie (Part 1, Part 2); explaining the history of burlesque and discussing the current scene in New York.
At a time when burlesque is under the mainstream media spotlight, we are so pleased that Jo is on hand to always give the press something interesting, informed and intelligent.
Jo on Film, 2010…
The Toronto Burlesque Festival…
As if further proof is needed that Jo is ridiculously cool and smart…