Monday, May 24, 2010

Queens of Burlesque at the History Theatre

Finale with MC Mack (Scott Jorgenson)

Rose does Lili's routine

Blaze's Little Bo Peep number: Just where are those sheep?

The ladies shine for the newspaper man

The fabulous Gina Louise, Choreographer

 Photos from History Theatre

Knowing I'm a huge burlesque fan, my husband surprised me with tickets to History Theatre's play Queens of Burlesque, written by David Mann and directed by John Miller-Stephany. We just squeaked in under the wire, because this past weekend were the last performances. I was especially pleased to see it, because Gina Louise Woods did the choreography, and I had taken a hair/makeup workshop with her through Lili's Burlesque last fall.

Here is a little teaser from History Theatre:

A funny, poignant, and revealing look at the lives of burlesque performers both on and off stage. With a wink and a nod to both naughty and nice, you will be transported back to a hot August night at the Gay 90s in 1953 where the drama in the ladies’ dressing room is rivaled only by the dancers’ sizzle on the stage. As an era comes to an end in the wake of televisions and changing social mores, these performers find themselves caught between economics of the time and the talents that they’d spent their lives honing. Stand up comics and girls with boas draped over just the right places make for a provocative night of music, dance, and laughter.

I had a grand time. I liked meeting all the ladies: the seasoned artist, Gladys Page (Greta Grosch), the ditsy comedienne, Barbette DeLight (Daisy Macklin Skarning), the ambitious and alluring blonde, Rose DuBois (Emily Rose Skinner), and the glamorous and gutsy working mother, Blaze Comet (Stacia Rice). The story was by turns funny, saucy, and poignant. Of course, I especially enjoyed the burlesque numbers, particularly the finale, and the pretty costumes. The Theatre displayed photos and clippings from the Twin Cities' Burlesque past, which sweetened the pot.

If this play runs again, try it catch it. It's glitzy and heartfelt fun! And until then, you can console yourself by checking out the beautiful women of Lili's Burlesque at one of their fantastic Underpants Shows.

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Guinan 1990?-2009

Griffin ?-2010