Weekend of Burlesque

I had a great weekend fill with burlesque fun that included some awesome hoopiness.  Let me tell you about it.

First, the Save The Tassels benefit on Friday was excellent.  So good!!!  All of the burlesque performers, pole dancers, acrobats, and hoopers did such a fantastic job.  It was a great show.  Even though the performers had to do a Boston-style show, which is an old term for having to have certain parts completely covered when performing a routine.  Still, the humor, wit, and sexiness in all the routines were performed in the true spirit of burlesque.  Thank you to all who put this event together, performed, and gave their support to breastcancer.org!

On Saturday, Jenny had a burlesque hooping workshop at Studio Spin.  I was there and learned a lot and expanded my burlesque knowledge from the workshops I took with Medianoche and Penny Starr.  Bunny Bedford, a local-ish burlesque performer, was there to give insight and she also learned to hoop, and loved it so much she was going to buy a hoop as soon as she could. 

Jenny taught us some of the basics that we can do with a hoop in a burlesque routine, and she also had a group choreography that we did at the end of the workshop.  Before we left, Jenny gave us a list of the music that she used.  I actually did download some of the tunes and worked out to them yesterday.

Speaking of yesterday, I got my daily hoop practice in, but I had to use a heavier hoop and focus on core hooping.  It was really windy outside!  I did a lot of work on marching in place, stepping side to side, and pointing my toes forward, to the side, and backwards while hooping.  I also did this in both currents.  Either way, it’s not as easy as it sounds, and it something that we do a lot in Jenny’s classes and I really need to practice.  So I did.

So, that’s the burlesque-ness of my weekend.  Fun stuff!

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2014 PA Burlesque Festival

Ah, so this is the is the amazing and cool thing I did this weekend that I teased about last week!  My friend Amber and I went to the 2014 PA Burlesque Festival in Jim Thorpe, PA.  It was awesome!

We got there in time for our first class, and discovered what a funky and fun town Jim Thorpe is.  It has a lot of nice, small shops and good dining.  It’s scenic and cute, and they have a train line that goes through the town that people ride for leisure.

We got to the Mauch Chunk Museum Ballroom where the classes were being held, as well as the festival’s bazaar. We had met up with Amber’s roller derby friend Vanity and headed on over to class.  There were a lot of really pretty fascinators, clothing, a small photo studio, and, or course, really beautiful pasties and gear for all your burlesque needs.

Amber and I enrolled in Burlesque 101 with the beautiful and petite burlesque performer Medianoche. She was a great teacher and had us learn the basics of burlesque movement and how to remove gloves.  We even did a short choreography at the end.  Here we are with Medianoche in the middle.  I’m second one in from the right hand side, and Amber is beside me in the pink tank top.  Vanity is two to the left hand side from Amber.

Vanity, Amber, and I then explored the Jim Thorpe a little bit after class, had lunch, and found a store called Horizons that had something that caught my eye and I had to play with.  HOOPS!

They were beautiful and I might try to figure out how to make the fabric covered ones.  The store had hoops outside that you can play with, and, duh, I did!

The next class was with the fantastic burlesque legend Penny Starr.  At 81, she still performs and knows how to work her stuff.  Amber and I talked to her a little bit before the class, and she was so sweet to us.  Oh, but when an 81-year-old burlesque legend sternly tells you its time for class, you listen.  She had many pearls of wisdom to impart of her students.

Vanity had left after the first class, and Amber and I had some time to kill before the Big Reveal, the festival show and competition that was being held at the Mauch Chunk Opera House.  After pizza, Amber and I headed up to the opera house and found our seats.

What a show!  All the performers were outstanding and it was hard to choose a favorite.  Congratulations to Poison Ivory, who won the Crystal Corset Award and for her amazing act!  All of the ladies and ‘Stache, the only gentleman performer, did a fantastic job and their confidence is inspiring.

It was a great day, with a little travel adventure thrown in.  Oh, Google, if you’re reading this, please do not route two girls from out of town on a road that has a sign that says “Travel Road at Your Own Risk.”  It might be terrifying for them.  Though, it did make for a good story and laugh.  It was either that or cry.