Naughty Things That Only A burlesque Performer Will Admit To…

So you all thought the world of burlesque was glamour all the way? But behind the glitz there is a glitter-coated trail of well, naughty habits that only performers of a certain genre would admit to… Step into the confession box you sinful showgirls and boys – all that you impart will be completely confidential…  

Re-using the false eyelashes. You’ve done the maths and yes, putting on a new pair of false eyelashes for every show and throwing away the used ones costs around £20 a month – that’s on average £240 a year just on false eyelashes. Surely there’s nothing wrong with picking off the glue and wearing until they look like the crushed legs of a dead spider…

OurfriendsEclectic_TaffyBoJangles3_MissMothAnd you will know us by the trail of Glitter… Oops! Yes, that possibly was me that left glitter on the cat, on the bread bin, everywhere in the hotel, all over the house, in your underwear draw – even on your boyfriend. And now I’m having a coffee fresh from Costas and there’s glitter in it. I don’t know how it got there. Honest. I have not even used any glitter today.

Sniffing the safety thong to see if you can wear it to one more show… Yes, you know you do it! You know you’ve already worn it for one performance under your costume but you’ve forgotten to bring a fresh one for the next nights show. Yes it looks clean – and after all, you have technically only worn it for a couple of hours… so…

Testing the cases in TK Maxx. And by testing, we don’t just mean pulling around the shop floor to see if the wheels are glidey enough. Oh No. Full burlesque testing to meet the strict show requirements include opening up said case, placing shoes in pockets, pulling at the lining to see if there are any secret pockets you can utilise, checking the zips – all the zips – work, climbing into the case, sitting on the case, riding on the case and throwing the case (to test for strength, durability) across the shop.

You always have a spare seat next to you on the train. Yes, your hair might be in pin curls, setting for tonight’s show under a cloth and you are used to fellow commuters giving you a sidelong glance. You’re even used to them getting up and moving because you’ve comandeered the table for your make up station because you know you might not have enough time to get ready later. But now you are getting strange looks on the train from passengers who think there’s been an explosion in a clown factory… You’ve painted for the back row and it’s still daylight. You look crazy but you don’t care.

The ‘not eating until after the show’ thing… A costume you’ve been waiting, with excitement for has just turned up from China. You ordered XL and to be honest there’s no way the costume would fit an XL rake. You’ve got no time to sort out another costume so you decide to do the sensible thing and not eat until after the show. It’s okay. You’ll not starve. Actually you will, but the satisfaction of getting into a seam-splitting silken tube and not being able to move or breath on stage until you take it off will be worth it…

WP_20151206_17_25_59_ProGetting followed by the security guard in shops… Yes, we know it’s you… you are the one lurking in the jewelry isle, closely examining the beads, baubles and bracelets to see how they could be pulled apart. You are the one in the home decorations section grouping together faux flowers and kitsch ornaments to see how they could make a headdress and the one rolling about in the curtain shop, draping fringing and beading and huge tassels on yourself and wondering why the shop assistant is giving you an odd look when you ask for a mirror. You have just been thrown out of Toys R Us for disturbing parents and making the kids cry by breaking apart a seaside set, balancing a lobster on your head (pondering aloud, ‘I wonder how well this would rhinestone’) and placing clams on your cooch. It’s a hard life making your own original costume accessories and props.


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