Australian Burlesque Festival 2011

Last weekend I was fortunate enough to go to Melbourne to perform at the Australian Burlesque festival. It was  a wonderfully fun, completely exhausting and totally revitalising extra long weekend. My interest in burlesque and performing has grown not just by seeing so many great performers but also meeting so many people from all over Australia that I had previously only known from Facebook.

The “weekend” started on Thursday flying down to perform at the Baby Bombshells show. This show was for new performers with one performer chosen to perform at the Big tease a couple of days later.

Unfortunately I didn’t get to see many of the shows due to having to rush out to replace a vital forgotten item of costuming (thank goodness for late night shopping) but what I saw made me confident of the future of Burlesque in Australia. All the performers were wonderful in the genre of burlesque they performed. It was wonderful to meet Alexandra Charles who is a local Sydney girl with so much class and true tease in her performance ( I can’t wait to hang out with her some more) . Monique Le Minx was adorable, naughty and has a smile that lights up a room- and another really sweet person!   The Divine Parody (Miss Lulu Bisou and Lallah L’amore) who were chosen to perform at the Big Tease are so much fun and really nice women too. I can’t wait to see them perform in Sydney too ( I am trying to convince them to make the trip up)! I am looking forward to the show reels being published so that I can see all the other performances!

What was so exciting for me was the reaction I received from the crowd that night and for days to come with messages and compliments paid to me. The crowd was wonderful! Afterwards so many people came up to me congratulating me on my performance. One woman even admitted even though her daughter performed I was her favourite! Over the next few days I received messages on Facebook and at other shows from audience members and fellow performers saying how much they enjoyed my performance.

 

Over the next few nights I attended all the shows and I enjoyed seeing the variety of talented performers from this country and the overseas guests. Empress Erotique and the Cabaret Carnivale were a highlight for me. An impromptu photo shoot in the naughty room with some of the other burly girls was truly hilarious during a break at Empress Erotique had some spectacular resulting photos. The antics of The Boy Wonder, Khandie Kisses and The Astonishing Johnny Domino gave the festival a truly hilarious finale! There were too many fabulous performances to single anyone in particular out but Khandie Kisses won lots of hearts both in the audience but from the burly girls who loved seeing her energy onstage. She really inspired me to use my physicality more when I perform.

 

On the last night a few of us found out that our flights had been cancelled the next day, so along with some Melbourne friends we partied on until they kicked us out. So much fun! Khandie Kisses brought out the wild burly girl in us all with her wonderfully outrageousness, champagne flowed freely(!)  and we danced and danced even though we were unsure of how we were going to get home. Some plans were hatched and many offers extended for a place to sleep if we got stuck.

 

The next day in lieu of my flight I had a sleep in, a long brekky and booked the train for the next day just in case.  Between attending shows every night and shopping every day I was too exhausted to do anything else (my feet especially feeling like they would fall off) so I decided to risk going to the airport.  I managed to talk my way into the special queue instead of the long one heading out the door (a smile, being nice and some weirdly shaped luggage goes a long way). I managed to get the second last seat on a special flight heading out late that night!  Even though I would have loved to stay in Melbourne longer, I was simply exhausted and wanted to be in my own bed and to give Cleo my Cat a big cuddle!

I want to thank the festival organisers for giving me this opportunity and especially Dolores Daquiri who gave me such wonderful feedback and advice. I can’t wait to return to Melbourne and catch up with all the lovely people I met and to perform at Melbourne’s luscious venues!

 

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