Monday, March 29, 2010

My Wonderful Underbra

Different venues have different restrictions, and some have requirements that the underboob (top of areola to the bottom of the breast curve) must be covered.  Apparently underboob incites sexual rioting when there's alcohol or gambling within shouting distance or something, making it necessary for vice laws requiring the underboob to remain covered.  I've performed in shows in Los Angeles where I had to wear a net bra or keep my underboob covered if I crossed the "vice line" on the stage floor.  My friend Evie Lovelle has a beautiful underbra from when she competed for Miss Exotic World in 2008.  (Because of the proximity of the gaming machines to the stage, performers found out the day before that they had to cover their underboob or risk trouble with the Nevada State Gaming Commission.)  I have a net bra, but it's pretty unromantic and gives absolutely no support to a gal of my build.  So I decided to make an underbra for venue compliance while giving added support.

I bought a gold lace bra that fit perfectly; there's no room for padding.  I removed the straps and trimmed down the tops of the cups so they would still cover part of the areola when I finished the edge.  I can wear my pasties outside the bra or beneath the bra, depending on my plans for the number.  I left enough bra going up the side of each breast to add definition and shape.  I'll stick those on with garment tape for a cleaner line.  I then added rhinestones in neutral colors.  It's very comfortable and is thin enough to wear under a fancy costume bra.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Corset Tidbit

I'm currently getting my first custom corset made by my friend Anastasia von Teaserhausen.  Her corsets are amazing, secure and comfortable.  In order to determine what would work best for my body and my needs, I spent a good half hour in a corset close to my own size.  It was fantastic because we could easily tell what I needed for my regular range of dance motion.  Because she loves making corsets and she's incredibly knowledgeable, she explained to me what the benefits were of different styles, basic construction and the best fabrics for the corsets.  It was amazing.  I'm trying on the mock-up this weekend.

In the meantime, here's an article I read about corsets and some good things to know before committing to a corset.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Burlesqueland: How I Pretty Much Ruled

I do love seeing fan responses to shows, especially when they're favorable.  One Burlesqueland attendee posted a brief review of the show here.  I even got a blurb:

(But Cruella rolling around with stuffed Dalmatian toys pretty much ruled.)

How awesome is that?!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Burlesqueland: Day Two

We spent Thursday at Disneyland with other burlesque performers and enthusiasts.  We wound up in a different mix of people than last year, which is a great way to get to know other people in the community.  OC Weekly caught up with my group for a few minutes before Mr. Snapper and I left for the day.  You can see the slideshow here.

There's also this incredible map of Burlesqueland designed by Chris Beyond.  (Have I mentioned how much I love being the poster girl for this event?)

It was an absolute pleasure to spend the day with these folks.  My tour included the following attractions: Indiana Jones, Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean (which we we stuck on for about 45 minutes), Captain EO, Small World and Tiki Room.  We had a delicious lunch at Cafe Orleans midday consisting of Monte Cristo sandwiches and garlic fries.  What a wonderful day!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Burlesqueland: Day One

(I've had so many consecutive days of excitement that I'm a smidge behind in keeping you up-to-date.)

Wednesday night was the first of three Burlesqueland events this year.  It was a great night filled with incredible performances.  We even made the OC Weekly!

Here's a little shot of me as Cruella DeVil.  Photo by S.H. Photo.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

How to Be a Pick-Up Girl

As a teacher, I encourage my students who are eager to perform to get their feet wet in the world of pick-up, or "panty wrangling" as my friend Vivienne Vermouth calls it.  It's a really great way to meet producers and other performers.  It also gives you the chance to get onstage, backstage, and familiar with the way a show runs without having to take off your clothes.  I checked Google for a simple job description for pick-up girls but couldn't easily fine one, so I'm providing one here.  (And the word 'girl' can easily be replaced by 'man.'  There are more chicks who I've seen do it than dudes.)

The pick-up girl dresses very cute, sassy, sexy (or they dress to fit the theme of the show).  If it's a themed show, the producer may provide a costume.  If you haven't been to a burlesque show and seen the pick-up girl in action, I highly recommend seeing a show before asking for/taking the job.  She's a stage assistant, picking up the discarded clothing after each performer in a very cute, sassy, sexy manner, ensuring each performer gets back every piece of clothing.  (When I did pick-up early in my burlesque career, I'd count the pieces the performers would take off so I knew how many pieces I had to take back to the dressing room.)  She sets up props for the performers before each act and clears the stage after each act.  She may have to sweep up glitter, wipe up water or food stuff from the stage between acts so there's always a safe (non-slippery) performance space.  She liases between the stage manager and the emcee in case there's a need to stall (like the CD isn't playing and the emcee needs to know it's time to vamp).  She may also do "shake down" to pass through the audience to collect tips, looking cute and holding out a hat, box, tray, etc. for those who want to give a little extra.

Specific producers will let you know what they need and want, but this is the general idea for the pick-up girl. Producer and "foul-mouthed godmother of L.A. burlesque" Lili VonSchtupp reminded me that the pick-up girl gets more stage time than almost anyone else and that she may provide some intermezzi (simply put, entertainment between acts).  It's a very important gig, and a wonderful way to get involved.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Letter Follies: March Edition

Again, I'm a little behind in my blogging about shows since I had the cooties for nearly a week.

Last night was the March edition of the Letter Follies.  It truly is a delight to perform in that show.  One of the best parts is that there's a pole on the stage so I have the option of doing pole work, and this allows me the opportunity to dance to music I wouldn't be able to otherwise.  A wonderful thing about pole dancing for me is that it really puts my musicality to work; I take the music in and try to become it.  Based on audience feedback, I think I'm succeeding.

Monday Night Tease! presents QUEEN

I've been ill recently so I'm behind in my show postings.  I apologize for that.  In return for your patience, I have a gift for you: a show photo.  My accomplice for this year's Blue Man Group-themed number to "Fat Bottomed Girls" was award-winning burlesque performer Evie Lovelle.  Photo below by SH Photo.