Thursday, June 13, 2013

Miss Burlesque Australia 2013

When people ask why I perform I emphasise the enjoyment and freedom I feel on stage, the creativity I get to express through movement and costuming, but what I really love is our little community here in Australia. Bound together we dance and celebrate, gripe and moan and on May 25, a small number of our community shared the agony and ecstasy competing in Miss Burlesque Australia, made all the more special as it was Producer, Cassandra Jane's last one.

Most of us arrived on Friday, some by plane, others by car. Five of us were sandwiched into a small but comfortable room at the Nunnery- I'm sure the Nuns didn't figure their convent would one day house the likes of us -  Agatha Christie tucked into a corner and Briana Bluebell on a bottom bunk while Luna Eclipse, Strawberry Siren and I took the final three singles.

Agatha Frisky and I monopolising the bedroom before our shoot
We trooped down to the Fitzroy gardens for a quick photoshoot in front of a fountain just as school was let out, terrorising smartly dressed, roll skirted kids with our fallen from grace, Disney princess attire. From the fountain to the lawns where we brought out our own inner child, throwing leaves and joining a wedding party for a few happy snaps. Briana Bluebell seemed unimpressed with suggestions that we play stacks on and whip away her crown ...

Frankie Faux, Danica Lee, Lucy, Strawberry Siren, Kelly Ann Doll, Briana Bluebell, Luna Eclipse, Becky Lou, Agatha Frisky, Rita Fontaine and Jane Doe

Friday night we trooped to Bohemia cabaret for a delicious but reluctant meal- I was so tired!- the soup was tasty, beetroot and fetta, but it was quickly followed by an early bed for those of us who wilt when the sun goes down.
The next morning Strawberry, Luna and I snuck out of the room to get some much needed coffee and glorious food at Southpaw on Gertrude st. This was closely followed by more coffee from Bella de Jac who picked me up to meet a man with a van.
Although this jaunt took a lot longer than I expected and driving around Melbourne made me stress out (Melbourne has trams and tiny laneways) It was a grand distraction from the looming competition and I am now fairly competent about my driving abilities (although Becky and Emma Lou who came with me might disagree!)

Backstage with my room mate Bella de Jac
We piled out at the Atheneum, a stately theatre on Collins st that features a small stage and a huge auditorium of plush velvet chairs.
The dressing rooms were located at stage right and access to the wings was tight. Bella and I holed up on the second floor at the far end, a bit of an effort to make it down onto the stage but well lit with big mirrors.

Tiger Lilly giving me big eyes to go with my big hair!
I had picked out number 1, when we drew spots, first the worst, right? Well, first to emerge to do the gown walk but happily, not the first performer. The five male finalists competed after the girls walked the stage, revving up the crowd  and getting the audience into the right frame of mind for the classic burlesque acts that were to follow.

Performers, producer Cassandra Jane and emcee Rita Fontaine on the red carpet before the show

I know I lost a few moments of choreography somewhere but I get so much enjoyment from performing my classic act. The second song, Shivas Regal provides a great beat and really gives me a lift after the more sombre tones of Blue Prelude.

Skirt and knickers by Flo Foxworthy
I raced back up the stairs to start getting ready for my second act, Sirenes.
Two of the girl's from Tasmania's long running burlesque troupe, Miss Kitty's Meow were performing with me, Tiger Lilly was also helping me out with hair and make up which is something I tackle with great reluctance.

Oopsy Daisy and Tiger Lilly

Oopsy Daisy and Tiger, with little rehearsal due to geographical distances did an amazing job and really imparted a menacing look to the act.


With Oopsy Daisy and Tiger Lilly from Miss Kitty's Meow

 I scrubbed off my make up and chucked a crown on my head to do the curtain call, which if used on the Miss Burlesque DVD should provide a laugh- A confusion of showgirls as we tripped on each others dresses as we left the stage- and pick up Miss Showgirl Couture from Briana Bluebell who encircled me with a blue and red sash .

A confusion of showgirls?

with my new sash, Miss Showgirl Couture
Harry SC took out Mr Boylesque 2013, Strawberry Siren took out Miss Burlesque Australia 2013, Frankie Faux first runner up, Kelly Ann Doll second Runner up and Luna Eclipse Best Entertainer.

Kelly Ann Doll, Strawberry Siren, Frankie Faux

Full list of Miss Burlesque 2013 Awards

Agatha Frisky WA- Miss Fantastic
Becky Lou VIC- Bunnylicious
Bella de Jac QLD- Miss Bump and Grind and Most Elegant
Danica Lee SYD wildcard- Miss Congeniality
Frankie Faux- SYD wildcard- First Runner Up
Jane Doe VIC wildcard- Neo Revival
Kelly Ann Doll SYD- Second Runner Up
Lucy Sky Diamond TAS- Showgirl Couture
Luna Eclipse SA- Best Entertainer
Strawberry Siren GC- Miss Burlesque Australia and Most Classic

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