Tuesday, January 4, 2011

2010 in Review

Started 2010 off in Helsinki in February for the publication of my book in Finnish, and the Helsinki Burlesque Festival. Then I was invited to perform at and judge the Texas Burlesque festival in the spring, and I started a short lived but much loved job as a tour guide for Stranahan’s Colorado Whiskey, which led to my current employment with Montanya Rum, Colorado’s finest rum- recognized and praised nationally and internationally. They took me to New Orleans for my first Tales of the Cocktail where I learned a lot, drank a lot of amazing cocktails, met a ton of wonderful people, including a ton of LUPEC ladies, at our first national meet-up, and basically had the time of my life.

Bartending at RumFest
Montanya also sent me to London for Rum Fest, where we were one of five rums nominated for a Golden Barrel award in the ‘Best Rum in North America’ category! Yes, it’s that good.

Montanya also made it possible for me to attend one of my favorite events, Tiki Oasis. I’ve always attended as a burlesque performer, and while that was always fun, it was even better as a sponsor. Tiki people love rum, and so they loved me!

I was honored to be invited to perform at the Burlesque Hall of Fame event in Las Vegas, The New York Burlesque Festival, The Southwest Burlesque Showcase, The Great Burlesque Exposition in Boston, along with the Texas and Helsinki festivals.

Locally, BurlyCute (who put me on a giant moving billboard downtown) and Immundo Burlesque gave me lots of stage time, plus Westword’s Artopia, the Cala Inn in Dillon, Fresh City Life at the Denver Public Library, Ginger Sexton’s Apocalyptic Ball and the Denver Modernism Show all let me shake my tail feathers (and feather fans) on their stages.

I was lucky enough to go to two burlesque weddings! The first was in the spring and was the wedding of burlesque historian, Jaye Furlonger- now Jaye MacAskill at the Little White Chapel in Vegas with Dixie Evans, Tempest Storm and Laura Herbert in attendance.

Then in San Fran in the fall, Sparkly Devil married the west coast’s most fabulous and foul mouthed export from Brooklyn, a gent known as Bones. I performed as part of the wild and wacky burlesque reception and the next night at Hubba Hubba in Oakland at the post-wedding show produced by Sparkly.

Trying April's makeup style
Just before the New York festival, I headed upstate to spend some time with April March, who when we first met a few years ago gave me one of the biggest compliments of my life. She said I move like she did when she used to perform! We’re working on a tribute act to her- she travels and speaks about her career, but doesn’t perform anymore, plus there’s not much footage of her performances, so I’m hoping to give the world a view of what it was like to see her live back in the day. We picked out music and the costume and prop and hopefully we’ll get to debut it at the Exotic World Weekend this year!

My burlesque school is really taking off with sell out classes and a ton of fabulous ladies graduating with honors and wanting to take it to the next level to be professional performers! I’m so excited!

Vintage lifestyles magazine, Milkcow called my burlesque school one of the top 10 in the world!

LUPEC Denver is more organized, connected and driven than ever before. I’m so proud of us!

Dita's Be Cointreauversial
costume at Contreau Prive

I took a side trip to Paris and stayed in the shadow of the Sacre Coeur with Forest, the author or Paris' finest cocktail blog, http://52martinis.blogspot.com/ and had a couple cocktails with burlesque mover and shaker Gentry de Paris. Plus I spent an evening at Dita Von Teese's fabulous temporary club, Cointreau Prive where I sipped great cocktails and had a chance to drool over a couple of her costumes on display.

I was able to see Dita, one of my favorite artists, in New Orleans performing three acts I’d been dying to see live. She’s the epitome of the self created showgirl. Plus I had a story published in the international online burlesque magazine, 21st Century Burlesque about that Dita show in NOLA.

I had a bit part in Katharyn Grant’s movie Carolina Blue as a 70’s hooker!
Marie Vlasic painted my portrait
 which ended up on a billboard downtown!

I’ve always been fortunate enough to have great friends and colleagues and this year I feel like I’ve met more amazing people than ever before, mostly from the burlesque and the cocktail world.

As usual, I’ve really got no idea what 2011 will bring, but I’m hopeful for good things. I’d like to write more, and I feel like I’m ready to produce shows again after a long self imposed hiatus. Definitely stay tuned for at least a one night re-launch of Vivienne VaVoom’s “Burlesque As It Was”!

Happy New Year to you all, follow the golden rule, and above all else, do what makes you happiest!


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