Sunday, December 23, 2012

Meet Angie Pontani, Part 1

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

CoCo Lectric leads at the Academy Of Burlesque

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Agent Lynch - I Feel Love (burlesque hologram)

Agent Lynch has an exquisitely sensous 60s British secret agent style. This is a bit different from some of her shows, likely because she's making use of the hologram abilities.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Guest Blogger and Naughty Hottie Dawn Ius reviews Burlesque!

My friend Brian Bingaman, a musician and journalist with a respect for the work of burlesque performers, asked why I had not posted a review of the movie Burlesque. Since I go to the movies about twice a year, I hadn't seen it. So I posted an open call to anyone, even more than one, to be a guest blogger and provide a review. Three volunteered. One served up the goods. So even though the movie is no longer news, I had to share this lady with you. She is a writer who has undertaken burlesque for the same reason I have, and I highly recommend her fabulous blogs titled Through The Looking Glass and 50 or Bust in 2011.

Strutting into Body By Burlesque, all the way from Alberta, Canada, please welcome Dawn Ius!  Take it off, I mean, take it away, Dawn.


Just saying the word out loud makes my heart race. I love the way my tongue curls around the L and conjures immediate atmosphere. The glitter of the costumes, the smokiness of the air ripe with lusty lyrics and sensual movement.

Infected by music when just a toddler, I’ve always wanted to dance. But even then, I cursed my two left feet. Instead of dance, I joined soccer, baseball – the kinds of sports my Dad wanted his “tomboy” to play.

The desire to “move” never went away. To compensate for my lack of ability, I’ve become obsessed with dance movies. Dirty Dancing, Step Up, Strictly Ballroom. I’ve watched – and own – the good, the bad, and the downright ugly.

It should be no surprise then, that I held high hopes for Burlesque.

Burlesque is a little like Coyote Ugly – in fact, the story lines are quite similar. Small-town girl leaves behind dead-end job in search of fame and fortune in the big city, meets older mentor who dishes out a healthy dose of tough love, girl becomes a huge star and ends up with the hot – damn hot – guy at the end. There’s killer singing, killer dancing, and all of the cliché’d drama you might expect.
Yeah, I loved it.

I think Christina Aguilera has one of the most powerful voices in the industry, but I worried whether she could pull off the acting (yes!) I wondered if Cher would still amaze me, or if that deep, man-like voice that’s made her famous would annoy me by the end of the show (it kind of did.)

Aguilera might not win an Oscar, but her character was sympathetic and believable. I was absolutely mesmerized by the singing, the dancing.

And Cam.

I confess to falling in lust with Cam Gigandet in Twilight. No one told me he appeared in Burlesque.

In addition to falling in love with Cam all over again – hey, with all that girl action, I was happy for some genuine eye candy – Burlesque made me miss the dance classes I started last season (on a dare.) Not just the Naughty Hotties class, where I almost felt sexy, but everything about the way dancing makes me feel.

Burlesque has an inspirational quality about it. The kind of movie that makes you think you can do anything – even dance. So starting next week, that’s what I’m doing. I’ve registered for four classes at J’Adore Dance in Edmonton, Alberta, including Naughty Hotties. (gulp)

And when I close my eyes to avoid looking at my awkward self in the mirror, I’ll imagine I’m on stage in a glittery Burlesque costume, strutting my stuff in a smoky underground club while a mesmerized Cam Giganet watches on.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Blast Off Burlesque Stimulus Package featuring Barbalicious!

You could talk of so many qualities that set Blast Off Burlesque T & A above the other burlesque groups. Sure, they are all delightful to look at, so throw into the mix wildly imaginative themes, scripts, humor, fantasy, choreography, great costumes - oh, I could go on. Let's just be entertained by the beautiful Barbilicious. I'm hoping she'll be a guest here soon.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Who Would Like To Be A Guest Blogger?

My pal Brian Bingaman, noted journalist and musician, expressed disappointment that there had been no review or even a mere pastie sized mention of the movie "Burlesque" starring Cher and Cristina Aquilera.

Here's a revelation that some find disturbing - I rarely go to the movies. Maybe once or twice a year. So I haven't seen it. Is there anyone who would like to volunteer to be a guest blogger here on Body By Burlesque and give a review? Maybe even 2 or 3 brief ones, a comment, paragraph, or even the reason you have not seen it. I'm game, and looking forward to what you have to offer.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Sadie Hawkins, of Blast-Off Burlesque

I saw the gorgeous Sadie Hawkins last night at Scandals in Asheville, NC. She is a goddess. Look for her to be featured here very soon.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Coco Lectric, The 2010 Reigning Queen of Burlesque!

2010 New Orleans Burlesque Festival  -  Photo: Derek Jackson
 The 2010 New Orleans Burlesque Festival, as described to us in revealing, titillating detail by our pal, the fabulous photographer Derek Jackson, was the burlesque event of the year. The most exciting moment was when the luscious Miss Coco Lectric was crowned the 2010 Queen Of Burlesque. All hail the queen, we say!

Even before the advent of her queenly duties, Coco had quite a full itinerary as a performer. Fortunately she made time to visit Body By Burlesque to talk about her life and career.

Body By Burlesque: Congratulations, Queen Coco Lectric, and welcome to Body By Burlesque. Do you recall the very first time you saw a burlesque performance, and your reaction to it?

Coco Lectric: To be honest I do not remember the very first time I saw a burlesque performance. I’ve always been intrigued by cabaret dancing in old movies. I recall the song and dance numbers in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and the Hot Box Girls in Guys and Dolls very well. That is most likely where I saw my first cabaret style performances. Now that you mention it, I really do wish I knew exactly where I saw my first burlesque performance. I’m sure it shaped me somehow.

Photo: Naked Lens
BBB: When did you know it was your destiny to strut, shimmy, bat those gorgeous eyes and to take it off to music?

Coco: I’ve never had a moment of revelation when it comes to burlesque. I recognize the moment I felt comfortable in my own skin; it was a few shows into performing with the Jigglewatts, a troupe I co-founded with Ruby Joule. When I recognized that costume peels and reveals empowered the women in the audience I felt a strong sense of duty to continue with burlesque. I’ve always been a very sensual person and I find that I can combine my comfort with sensuality with my love of dancing, singing and acting, arts I’ve trained in my whole life.

BBB: Tell us about your dance training and experience, and how they shaped your signature style?

Photo: Ben Britt
Coco: I started out dancing like most little girls do, in ballet, tap and jazz before grade school even started. I progressed to modern dance, pointe, and hip-hop. In my early adulthood, and I finally got some curves, I felt a stronger sense of identity with more colorful styles of dance that accentuated the female form like hula, belly dance and the Latin styles, so I trained in those.

I do feel, however, that my extensive go-go experience in Austin contributed the most to my comfort in burlesque. I go-goed in some of the most well-know dance clubs in Austin and pretty girls were a dime a dozen.

I learned how to excel in statuesque poses by working in the shadow box and how to capture people’s attention from across the room by engaging in eye-contact and really showing my dance skills when appropriate. Go-go was my boot camp into incorporating dance and audience engagement while sharpening my improvisational skills.

BBB: We would love to know about the classes you teach.

Photo: Digicisco Photography
Coco: I teach a variety of classes. I’ve taught dance classes to grown up ladies all manners of feeling good in their own skin. I currently teach beginner, intermediate, and advanced burlesque at Galaxy Dance School in Austin. They are very excited about being the home of the Austin Academy of Burlesque. I teach intensive workshops the first Sunday of every month at Lucila’s World Dance, which is quite an honor for me because she used to teach me belly dance and continues to mentor me in flamenco.

BBB: Who designs your stunning costumes? What do you choose first - the music or the costume - when choreographing a new show?

Coco: I design all of my costumes. Black Mariah of Fastenating Things, Dallas, and Jennifer Gonzales of Jupiter Moon Corsets, San Antonio, have been a great help to me in making my designs become a reality. I usually come up with the concept of a number before I even attempt to search for music or costumes. Occasionally, I’ll hear a great song that just does it for me. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always read well on stage…soul music and R&B tends to really get me…it's just not always the best choice for burlesque.
BBB: Coco darling, your fans know you are also a fabulous professional singer. Do you blend your vocal skills with burlesque performances?

Coco: Oh, I do! I don’t generally perform vocally when I do festivals, but I just love combining striptease and serenade. Austinites get to hear me sing quite often in our home shows at the ND, and I recently sang in Minneapolis with Lili’s Burlesque and in Denver with BurlyCute Burlesque. I’d love to do more of it, but I’m not sure about competing with a vocal number, which is where a great many shows gain popularity. I tend to do songs that are more sultry than a representation of my vocal talents. The goal is still to tease, tantalize and inspire.

BBB: Imagine that you could travel back in time to meet one of the original burlesque stars. Who, pray tell, would it be?

Hey Pony! HotRods & Heels
Dallas  -  Photo: Naked Lens

Coco: There are so many I’d love to meet. I’d love to meet Bettie Page of course, her joy and effortlessness has done so much for me and my performances. But I feel so close to her that I have no great desire to meet her. I would really like to meet Lili St. Cyr though. She seems to have a passion for dance and a general intensity that matches my own. We’d either get along great or keep a great distance. Either way, it would be nice to find out.

BBB: It's been wonderful to have you here, please visit again.

Coco: Thanks so much! Any time!

BBB: For Booking and Fan Information, visit the regal website of Coco Lectric, the reigning Queen of Burlesque!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Coco Lectric, Queen of Burlesque 2010 - New Orleans Burlesque Festival

Just a few more days until Body By Burlesque brings our first royal interview with the reigning Queen Of Burlesque, Coco Lectric! As you wait for the thrill you know she delivers, here's a teaser for you. Coco's electrifying performance at the 2010 New Orleans Burlesque Festival shows why it's good to see the Queen!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Derek Jackson, Celebrity Photographer to the Burlesque Stars

Photographer to the burlesque stars, Derek Jackson, spent a weekend at the 2nd Annual New Orleans Burlesque Festival. Body By Burlesque couldn't make the scene, so we asked Derek for the lowdown.

Body By Burlesque: Derek, take it off the, from the top.

Derek Jackson and Jolee Blon'
Derek Jackson:  On Sept. 17th Jennifer Mason & Cougar Cantrell (Tammy Lynn Kanoa, who dances for Salome Cabaret in Knoxville,) and I flew out of Atlanta on the 11am flight on Delta.At the hotel we met up with Katherine Lashe, Ursula Undress, Tupelo Honey, and Chad Sanborn. They headed to rehearsal, and Jennifer, Cougar & I went straight to the ACME Oyster House for some local flavor before the Friday Night Show.

CoCo Lectric
 The best performances were definitely 1, 2, 3 - CoCo Lectric, Lola Van Ella, and Renea' Le Roux. Throw into the mix, Athena (filler singer) and Catherine D'Lish (Friday's House Of Blues headliner.) I always sit transfixed every time that Amber Ray walks on stage. She's amazing. That's just from the Saturday Competition Night. On the Mondo Burlesque Show at Harrah's on Friday, Michelle L'amour and her La Panthere act closed the show, and is always a crowd favorite. Also, Michelle L'amour and the Chicago Starlets act of The Van Gogh-Gogh's is so much fun. My favorite acts from the House of Blues were Charlotte Treuse, Lydia DeCarllo & of course Satan's Angel.

BBB: If I asked for just two of your fave moments. (Two Double D Cup-fulls, if you please.)

DJ: Just two? Being called out by Amber Ray and being a part of Dinah Might's act.

Renea Le Roux
 BBB: Can we hit the rewind button and break it down?

DJ: So it’s after the Friday night shows and I’m hanging out outside the House of Blues with Jennifer Mason and Tupelo Honey when I hear my name, couldn’t believe it was Amber Ray strolling down the street arm in arm with a beautiful dame. She called out my name to say hello. I must have had a stunned look on my face, as she just giggled as she walked by. I turned around and told the girls, “ Damn, I just got called out by Amber Ray!”

BBB:  And the the other bit of story?

DJ:  While checking in at the hotel, I got a call from the producer, Rick Delaup, saying Dinah Might wanted to know who was on the front row. Rick called me and handed the phone to Dinah Might. She told me when she was on stage during her act, doing her fan dance, she would pause, beckon me to the edge of the stage with a "come here" finger wave. I was to get up, take a step to the stage, and she would slap me with her fans - left-right-left.* I was to do a head-snap in sequence. She really tagged me good, mind you. I got a lot of compliments from people in the crowd saying how good it looked.
*Click for video.

BBB: Ooh la la!

DJ: Aside from the fact that we had the best seats in the house, that I had face time with Kitten De Ville, Jo Weldon, Kitten Onthekeys, Michelle L'amour , and Jolee Blon', who is just creamy. Seeing Amber Ray & Jolee Blon' in the elevator between stops where they both said hello, smiled and waved, but it was a full elevator. Being on stage after the Saturday competion shooting press photos was cool, too.

Lydia DeCarllo
Oh, and one thing I'll never forget is that we went to the House of Blues after the post awards show photos and we got there late and the place was packed. I looked at one of the local photographers and said, how are we going to get to the front? He said, come on, follow me. We're heading downstairs and  through the loading dock getting stopped at every turn; thwarted by roadies and security guards because the B-52's were playing a private party at the main show room. We protested that our path was up to the front row of the 2nd showroom. No dice. Ten more attempts before getting a female security escort us to an elevator in the kitchen, putting us behind the stage so when we walked out - front row! The other photographer scooted across the floor in front of the stage, and I looked down and there was one seat on the corner of the front row and I took it. A few minutes later, the producer of the show stuck his head though a side curtain, saw me and said, "how did you get that seat!? I just flashed a smug smile and grinned.

BBB: Smooth, you must have felt like the 007 of burlesque photographers. 

 DJ: I have to say that seeing my good friend Jennifer Mason and Tupelo Honey enjoy their first festival was great, plus hanging out with Cougar Cantrell. Introducing Jennifer to Satan's Angel was something I'll never forget. To watch Jennifer go crazy when Angel was onstage doing her fire tassels act and introducing them afterwards, unforgettable.

BBB:  Tell me Derek, have you ever gotten so caught up in watching a show that you forgot to take pictures?
Catherine D'Lish

Satan's Angel
Hot Hot Hot!
DJ: Never. I always try to get a front row seat for the best show photos. There's nothing worse than having someone's head in your shot to ruin the image. I have gotten caught up in the pre/after party/chatting with friends and forgotten to take candids. I've always liked to have a mix of photos of before, during & after, to help show the mood of the night. I guess that if an act is so jaw-dropping steamy, I feel I have to "try" and capture that mood, to show what the dancer is trying to convey. It's almost part of my job to do so. There are times where I've attended two shows and shot one and sat one out. I always hated that I didn't shoot, as I probably missed "that one shot" ... There's just something about a burlesque dancer in a beautiful dress that makes me want to photographer her. I do shoot too many photos, but I always seem to get that "one shot" that makes the night.

BBB: Last minute twirl, I mean, mention?

DJ: Oh, and was very happy that my friend Renea Le Roux got Runner-Up. She was thrilled. After the show, I escorted her to the House of Blues, sorta doing body-guard detail, but it was great to catch-up with her, since she moved to Vegas.

BBB: Thanks, Derek. I think Body By Burlesque should go on the next trip and photograph the photographer. Your pictures are stunning, beautiful works of art. So glad you visited here. I could only post a teasingly few photos, for the full reveal get an eye-full at Derek Jackson Photgraphy's flickr site.