Saturday, 26 May 2012

Here, There and Back Again

This week has been such a whirlwind of activity and I think I've come down with a little bit of a cold as a result of it all!
On Tuesday I popped to London for the second Big Burlesque Night Out - it was lovely to catch up with old friends, and meet some new ones too! We danced at The Arts Theatre in Soho, drank cocktails out of teapots and I also vaguely remember being in a rickshaw through Trafalgar Square. Glorious... and messy...

With Taz, Coco DuBois and Ruby Deshabille ** With Vienna Green

With Glorian Gray ** With Coco DuBois

The next morning, taking advantage of the gorgeous weather, I was taken on a magical mystery tour of London, ending with a lovely meal beside the River Wandle and a wander around Deen City Farm where all the baby animals were out in force!!

Cutest little piglet!

The rest of the week was taken up with my latest obsession: I am dramatically pimping out several of my costumes: even though 'Sugar' is a brand new act, the dress was not up to the rigours of performing on stage several nights a week and was already starting to fall apart, so I have changed and improved the dress. I also put the finishing touches to my new 'Peacock Dance' costume which is one of my oldest acts and is onto its fourth incarnation!
I still want to work on the costumes for 'Shake It' and 'Broadway Belle' but they will probably take another week or so of solid sewing...

New costumes for 'Sugar' and 'Peacock Dance'

On Friday - it being the last Friday of the month - I travelled to Bath for High Tease. Although this time I wasn't performing, but stage managing! I get more nervous for kittening than I do performing: if I mess up during my act, it's only really me who knows, but if I mess up kittening, then I've messed up someone else's act! However, I got my head in the game and both the sound check and the show went off without a hitch! Go me!
Fortunately the line-up was incredible: Dusty Limits hosting (and giving a shout-out to his sponsors!) with performances from the unbelievably sexy Luna Rosa (who had to dash off after her second act to catch a flight to Stockholm! How glamorous!), Tricity Vouge - who I'd heard so much about but had never actually seen before Friday, and she had me in stitches! - the whirlwind of energy that is Peggy de Lune, my darling Coco Malone and the gorgeous Sherry Trifle, who I haven't seen for ages!!

In fact, the last time I saw Sherry was at Dr. Sketchy's in Birmingham, which was where I was heading to on Saturday! The shows theme was 'Spring has Sprung' and even the weather was getting in on the act with tropical temperatures and scorching sunlight!
The audience was small but appreciative: the show was hosted by the resident chanteuse Liberty Pink and I was sharing the bill with Shirley Windmill - who performed her hysterical 'marrow' act, and Velma von Bon Bon - who I've seen perform before but had never shared a bill with before this weekend!
Because of the way Sketchy's is run, I actually got chance to sit down and do a little doodling myself after watching Velma's act!

Velma von Bon Bon - by me!!

My 'Cottingley Fairy' by Pip 'Astro' Bayley

I'm happy to be back home with my cats and the kittens (who are beginning to get a lot braver and more adventurous - they'll be all over the place and into everything shortly!) as the week of hot weather and travelling has tired me out.
I'm not so happy that I forgot to take pictures at either of the shows this weekend, so to make it up to you, here are some more pictures of the kittens. Enjoy!


**Things I Love This Month**
**Kittens!!**Berry Smoothies**Shantaram**Sunshine**Caramelised Onion Hummus**Cocktails in Teapots**Glitter**

Why not read about the last (and first) time Shirley Windmill and I performed together: here... or some other adventures this month here...


Monday, 21 May 2012

Weddings and Windmills

On Friday I was excited and privileged to be asked to perform at the wedding of The Great Voltini and Nurse Electra. It took place at Carter's Steam Fair: a beautiful, vintage fairground in West Wycombe and I attended the service too along with Joe Black and Kittie Klaw - we were particularly intrigued by the invitation which instructed us to meet at The Wall of Death...

The marriage of The Great Voltini and Nurse Electra!

The ceremony was beautiful, personal and unique... and concluded by the bride taking an impromptu trip on a motorbike around the wall of death!

Electra Voltini on The Wall Of Death!!

All afternoon was taken up with playing on the fairground rides and vintage slot machines, followed by myself, Joe and Kirsty putting on a show for the wedding guests along with Frank Sanazi!

Joe Black outside our venue for the evening!

Showtime! With James Malach, Arran Shurvington, Frank Sanazi, Joe Black and Kittie Klaw




Seen around the vintage steam fair!

Kirsty and I were excited to be staying in a gorgeous little hotel called The George and Dragon, which was obviously haunted and the landlord took great pleasure in regaling us with ghost stories over a nightcap! And as we didn't have to dash away in the morning we went for a stroll around the beautiful village.


Our lovely hotel, the village and scenery.

I did, however, have to catch a mid-afternoon train to travel to Swansea for the legendary Bluestocking Lounge at the Grand Theatre. I was performing alongside my darling Flixx Demontrant and I was excited to finally meet Lilly Laudanum who both produces the event and performs! Another fantastic performer I had heard a lot about was Shirley Windmill (named after a bus stop in Croyden!) and she had me in stitches during both of her acts!
The audience were fabulous and appreciative, and the after-show feedback was wonderful! All in all, a fabulous couple of days!!

Backstage at The Bluestocking Lounge with Shirley Windmill, Atheria Hart and Flixx Demontrant

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Mid-Week Show Shenanigans

It's not often I have a show during the week, and when I do it completely throws me for the next couple of days! As it stands right now, I actually have no idea what day it is!

Anyway: on Tuesday evening we had the latest stop on 'The Burlesque Show' tour at the Queen's Theatre in Hornchurch, Essex.

Kittie Klaw, Billy Kidd and James Malach - The Queen's Theatre, Hornchurch

Along with the usual cast, we had the beautiful Dolly Rose performing her gorgeous 'Tango De Las Rosas' act, and the amazing female magician and escapologist Billy Kidd. We also had Glorian Gray stage managing for the night, and keeping us all in check backstage, and Dolores Delight as our chanteuse.

The audience were quiet to begin with, however once Lili La Scala convinced them that they were allowed to laugh, cheer and generally show their appreciation, they livened up! Jim Devereaux's Elvis went down particularly well, however, as did Elliot Mason's surreal musical comedy, and Fancy Chance even managed to gain herself a fan club who waited by the backstage door for her after the show!

The one major mishap during the evening (from my point of view) was the loss of my pasties for 'Sugar' which led me to take the drastic measure of using eyelash glue and covering myself in glitter! The painful removal process has ensured that I will never again travel without a spare pair of pasties or tassels!

I forgot to take a mirror picture for this show, so to make it up to you, here are a few more pictures of my kittens...



Photoshoot - Scott Chalmers (Behind the Scenes)

On Monday I made an epic trek down to Southampton to shoot with one of my favourite photographers Scott Chalmers - I worked with him last year and I love his use of light and shadow to create stunning pictures.

Scott Chalmers Photography

We were shooting several of my costumes: one new act and one very old act that I have never had promotional images of as it is too large to fit into a standard studio! We took advantage of the lovely evening weather to get some outdoor images of my 'Cottingley Fairy' act with the sunset, a light breeze and the occasional bemused dog walker!

Very, very cold! But nice and sunny at least.

Back in the studio we worked on some promotional images for my new act 'Corbeau' using a variety of different lighting set ups and backdrops to get different effects, then (as tiredness kicked in) we broke out the glitter and it all went a little bit wrong...

I'm so excited to see the finished results, but in the meantime, here are a few sneaky ones and 'behind the scenes' pics too...

Shooting 'Corbeau' - behind the scenes and a finished image

Cabaret Tea **  ** My calling card... :P

Glitter Monster!

Friday, 11 May 2012

Photoshoot - Tigz Rice (Behind the Scenes)

This week I was excited to have a photoshoot with the wonderful Tigz Rice - a London based photographer who specialises in Burlesque and Boudoir photography. She is also a fabulous Burlesque performer herself so she knows exactly how to make her models feel and look good.

I had wanted to shoot with Tigz for a while - she has worked with many of the top Burlesque performers from London and further afield and I admired her work so I was lucky enough to receive the photoshoot as an early birthday present to allow me to update my portfolio and shoot some new costumes :)

Glitter and Champagne - the Showgirl lifestyle!

Once Tigz and Taz had finished geeking out over camera lenses and lights, we managed to get through two costumes (one new act and one updated costume for an old act) and two boudoir-style outfits, including my gorgeous vintage pink gown, in time for Tigz to dash off to London Burlesque Festival where she was looking forward to judging the Boylesque catagory!

The highlight of the shoot for me was definitely being able to photograph the finale of my new act 'Sugar' which uses a champagne bottle full of glitter! I can't wait to see the pictures when they're ready!

In the meantime, Taz managed to get a few sneaky 'behind-the-scenes' shots in, so enjoy...!

Tigz at work

Glitter carnage **  ** Sparkly shoes

 Cheeky shots in between poses

I arrived home covered in sparkles to two hungry kitties and four sleeping kittens - so here is another shameless picture of the babies (because I am a crazy cabaret cat lady, and I don't care!)

Names for now (from the bottom, up): Patches, Ginger, Tails and Fosse

Monday, 7 May 2012

Cats and Travels

Once again I have been touring the country with my cabaret family in The Burlesque Show. This May bank holiday weekend saw us travelling the length of the country to begin in Poole, Dorset at the Lighthouse Theatre.

Full House!

The audience were wonderful - even some technical hitches that began at the top of the show and seemed to continue throughout didn't mar their enjoyment! It was lovely to be joined again by my bawdy-whore in crime Dolores Delight (the Elvis-raping was especially fun!), I very much enjoyed Dolly Rose's performances as I've not seen her new acts and they were absolutely gorgeous, and, being on the seafront, Kittie Klaw's 'A Little Seaman' act went down extremely well indeed!

Mirror Picture! With Lili La Scala and Kittie Klaw

The next morning we piled into cars and began our cross-country convoy to the beautiful spa town of Cheltenham to one of the most incredibly beautiful theatres I've ever been in.

The Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham

We were joined for this show by the gorgeous Missy Malone, who is a Cheltenham local, and it was lovely to have Elle Amour back with us again.  Once again we had a full house and a fabulous audience, and since the show began at 8, we were finished by 10, so early nights all round!

Sound-check and photo opportunity: With Missy Malone, Coco Malone, Lili La Scala, Jim Devereaux and Elle Amour

Mirror Picture! With Elan Koszuk, Elliot Mason, Jim Devereaux, Coco Malone, Missy Malone, Elle Amour and Kittie Klaw. 

Myself and the gorgeous Elle Amour.

I wish we could spend longer in the places we visit on tour - I especially wanted to have a nosy around all the quaint little shops along Poole's seafront (and eat fish and chips, obviously!) and visit the Cheltenham Jazz Festival which was in full swing as we left the theatre.
However, I was happy to be arriving home as (people who know me in real life or follow me on Twitter will know my little cat, Piglet, was pregnant), when I walked through the door, I found this:


There are four (I think - typically she's had them in an impossible to reach place!) - there should have been five, unfortunately, but the rest are doing well - making a racket considering their size! - and momma cat is taking care of them.  I am officially a crazy cabaret cat lady!