Saturday, May 29, 2010

VEGAS OR BUST! An "Exotic World" Fundraiser

Many of my favorite events are those where I come away from it having learned something I had not known before, of course beautiful and talented performers make such events even more enjoyable and such was the case with VEGAS OR BUST! at West Hall @ Oddfellows, Friday May 28th.

Hosted by the Academy of Burlesque Headmistress, the Twirly Girl Miss Indigo Blue, and featuring performances by the Golden Glamazon, Sydni Deveraux, the Wild Child Evilyn Sin Claire, the Tempting Temple of Taipei The Shanghai Pearl, and the Tinseled Tart Polly Wood, this was an excellent showcase of talent, and by the audience responses a definite crowd pleaser.

For those of you who do not know, the purpose of this event was to raise money to help cover the expenses of sending these Seattle performers to represent the Emerald City and it's vibrant burlesque community at the Exotic World reunion and pageant, as performers, witnesses, and in the case of Sydni Deveraux, competitors (merde mon cher!).

Exotic World, the Burlesque Hall of Fame, is a museum of burlesque memorabilia was founded by burlesque star Dixie Evans. Miss Evans started her Exotic World museum in Helendale, CA and shared her collection of burlesque history with the world; articles donated by the likes of Sally Rand, Lily St. Cyr and more. In 2007 Dixie moved the entire collection to Las Vegas where Seattle's glittered girls will be convoying towards this week.

Of the performances last night (all excellent) two in particular stood out as particularly exceptional.

The first was Miss Deveraux's fan dance, which she will be performing in the competitions at Exotic World. For those of you who have never seen Sydni perform or met her in person... Damn, girl is tall! And gorgeous! And talented! Striding out on stage in her platform heels (bringing her to some 6'5" ish), great peacock fans in hand, and golden-brown complexion shinning; she was a goddess in the spotlight. She will go far, and I know she will make a spectacular impression upon her peers in Vegas.

The second performance was a recreation of a number by burlesque legend Ricci Cortez, the Original Sleepy Time Girl, as constructed and performed by Miss Indigo Blue. This number was cute, beautiful and sexy all at the same time (usually a performer can only master two of these at a time, which shows just how good Indigo is). Indigo Blue will be performer, as Ricci Cortez, at the Legend's night at Exotic World and I only wish that I could see her in action there.

I must say that I envy these women their opportunity next week. Not to perform so much, but to see, and to learn from all of the great performers that will be there. The legends, the heroes and the peers of the burlesque world will gather and the world will be a brighter place for just a little bit.

Love! ~ Fosse Jack

Friday, May 21, 2010

Sinner Saint Burlesque presents "VAUDEVILLE!"

Opening Night

As I sit down to write this review I find myself at a loss. How can you describe something which is best enjoyed in the moment, where the unexpected is so much a part of the experience? To describe in any detail the acts in Sinner Saints' new show would almost be a disservice, yet I feel the need to say more than just 'go see it' which you should!

Since I first started going to their shows about a year ago, Sinner Saint has been my favorite burlesque troupe, and several of the members of SSB rank among my favorite performers in Seattle. Talent, creativity and masterful stage presence... These women have it all.

From Nicole Lucas' wit, self deprecating, fearless humor, to Evilyn Sin Claire's powerful sensuality, smoldering eyes and aura of latent danger to Lolita 'Tatas' Valentino's natural charm, sass and affected awkwardness, to Polly Wood's class and expert versatility, there is something in this show for everyone.

While all of the women at Sinner Saint are noteworthy, I feel that this show highlights the talents of three in particular.

Dona Dei Cuori is a newcomer to SSB. Dona has shown herself equal to her peers in both talent and comedic timing. Her CanCan number is particularly enjoyable and her glove removal and boa wrangling in her strip tease act was awesome. I look forward to seeing what else she will bring to the table.

Jesse Belle Jones spreads her wings in this show highlighting talents only briefly explored before. Both her acts are flawless and as the Bitchy Belle of Savannah G A she is a solid class act. It is her non burlesque (in the modern sense) that is why I urge you to pay attention to the Modern Sexual Intellectual. I won't ruin the surprise but I fell in love with her a little because of it!

The final performer I will highlight is the Pint Size Powerhouse, Whiskey Bliss. I first saw Whiskey as the Punk Rockcoon in Animalia and I was very impressed, this show bumps my opinion up a couple of notches above a bar set high to start. Both her burlesque performances and her vocal (girl's got pipes!) one were superb. My favorite thing about her performances, in both cases, is the expressiveness of her face. She is hysterical!

My words do the ladies at Sinner Saint little justice but let me make clear my enthusiastic love for this troupe! Seriously, they are my favorite for a reason. I hope that you get a chance to see this show. It is an homage to the founding of burlesque and as I said there is something for everyone at VAUDEVILLE!

Sinner Saint Burlesque
Thursdays 9PM Door/9:30 Show

1516 2nd Ave
Seattle, WA

Sunday, May 2, 2010



On Monday, May 24th, Fosse Jack and Seattle's Tinseled Tart, Polly Wood, present THE JACK & WOOD SHOW: A Neo-Vaudevillian Cabaret!

Hosted by Fosse Jack and Polly Wood, it will be an evening of music, dance, burlesque and original sketches (including the ongoing Roomies! saga) as performed by our hosts, the J&W Ensemble, and special guest Sam Petit. This month, in partnership with Seattle Stage Right, Jack & Wood is also excited to present a sneak peak of the upcoming West Coast premier of BJ: A Musical Romp.

THE JACK & WOOD SHOW returns to the intimate JewelBox Theater, at The Rendezvous in Belltown. Full food and beverage service is available within the JewelBox! Join Jack & Wood at Seattle’s newest monthly cabaret!

Date: May 24th 2010
Times: 8:00, doors at 7:30 (21+) .
Cost: $13 at the door (Cash only)
Place: The Rendezvous JewelBox Theater, 2322 2nd Avenue, Seattle, WA 98121
Accessibility: Wheelchair Accessible, call 206-218-9901 for front seating.

SEAF 2010

I had the opportunity to attend the Seattle Erotic Arts Festival on Saturday, May 1st (thanks to Polly Wood for the ticket!), and experience for the first time the wide melange of psycho-sexual curio that SEAF has to offer. I will keep my comments on the visual art brief. Very little spoke to me on a personal level, but to paraphrase a quote from the festival: one man's pornography is another man's erotica. Fair enough. Suffice it to say that many facets of sexuality were represented, from artistic nudes, to abstract and grotesque nudes, to any number of fetish themed pieces; including piercing (the woman's body turned into a harp was amazing!), scaring, of course varying degrees of BDSM.

The first performance of the evening was Naked Girls Reading; hosted by Elsa Von Schmaltz, with Jesse Belle Jones, Ember Divine, Polly Wood, and Heidi Von Haught as readers. For those of you who have not seen NGR, it is exactly what it sounds like. Naked...Girls...Reading. The selections they read at SEAF were actually pieces: poetry, short stories, and even a play, submitted by individuals to SEAF. The play about the elusive G-Spot as read by Polly and Jesse Belle was my favorite. I do have a question, something I just don't understand, why is violence, humiliation and non-consent so appealing? I don't get it. Pain, I can understand, but violence... it is foreign to me. Content aside, I enjoyed NGR and I look forward to attending their monthly shows at West Hall, Oddfellows Building.

There were other performances, pieces done on the many beds scattered throughout the exhibition hall. There was a rope demo on one, Polly Wood performed a burlesque piece on another, and people frequented another (I played on it as well) where they could play while a solarized video camera captured their movements and then projected them on a wall to add to be viewed whilst performing. Hot!

The warm up act to the main-stage performance was a flash (in more then one meanhing of the word) mob performed by small groups on the crowded dance floor. Stripping down to red underwear and dancing suggestively with their partners, the groups played while the crowd watched. My favorite was a trio (two guys, and a girl) who played off in a less crowded corner. Their was a bit more subdued but there was a genuine quality that I appreciated. Of course at the end they all picked up there clothes and went on as if nothing happened. Bummer! I don't believe sex should be work, but then again...that is one person's view.

The main stage performance was, pardon my English, FUCKING FANTASTIC!!! Stars from the burlesque community (largely Seattle) performed in an intricate, beautifully orchestrated, story exploring sexuality, kinks and the celebrating that we are all 'normal, kinky, freaks." I cannot do justice to individual performances, I simply do not have the vocabulary to express my appreciation. For most of the show, I stood, in silent awe.

The star studded cast included: Buttons DuPrise (sp?), the Shanghai Pearl as a gorgeous mermaid captured by the Twisted Monk (Sick & Twisted for sure), Fuschia FOXX, Waxie Moon, Paula the Swedish Housewife, Inga Ingenue, Miss Indigo Blue, Paris Original, Liza Rose (her umbrella number was AMAZING!), Dirty Martini, Sydni Deveraux (how she got her top off still eludes me, masterful misdirection!), the Luminous Pariah (I normally don't enjoy lip sync, but damn, this one is good!) and Jean du Jour. I am sure I forgot somebody, and I apologize. You were all fantastic!

One thing of particular note in the performance was the on going tale of the stag as told, in part by Jean du Jour in stag helm, but largely by a crack team of puppeteers. The story told was one of a majestic stag (there is something hot about the power and grace in that creature) being shot, and caught by hunters, then rescued by a maiden. Through the various movements of the story the maid and the stag begin a flirtatious game of forbidden love which culminates in a wild, and masterfully pantomimed bout of love making. Her glitter spray climax, followed by the impressive stag cum shot (I'll never think of silly spray the same way again) added a level of over the top comedy to the beauty of the piece. Loved it!

The performance ended with a guest appearance by Dan Savage, and a parade through the audience of the performers. Call me old fashioned, but I love a story with a good morale or lesson and the saga of Buttons and his Auntie Babu, had a good one. You only have one life to live so live it, and love it. If everyone could follow this, I truly think the world would be better off.

My hat off to all the performer at SEAF 2010. I am honored to belong to a performance community so full of talent. I only hope that I can one day add something of worth to it.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the chance to see the beauty of Auntie Babu's Curious Cabinet is passed for this year, but keep your eyes open for other opportunities to see the performers I have mentioned here. I guarantee you, they are worth it. Grace, sensuality, comedy, drama, power, sex, glitter, pasties... they have something for everyone to enjoy and remember. I know I will remember SEAF 2010, and I look forward to next year. Who knows, I may be lucky and get a chance to participate!

~ Fosse Jack