Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Costumes, Corsets and... erm... Ghost Babies...

Hello from London!

Yes, I've officially moved the the bright lights of the big city, and I jumped straight in at the deep end with my first job on the day of the move!

I was filming a promo video for the Old Vic Theatre, advertising their forthcoming production of Hedda Gabler and I was acting as a body double for the lead character.

The filming location was a glorious old house in the centre of London: I later found out it was both haunted, and had been used as the location for the film The King's Speech!

This was 'The Kings Speech' room

The costume was lovely, but very heavy and hot: I wore a shift petticoat, a very severe corset, a long petticoat, two bustle pads, a blue dress skirt and a long-sleeved button front jacket with a bustle and drape effect at the back - gorgeous but restrictive and a little claustrophobic, especially once the wig was on as well!

I shot several scenes for the film, from banging on doors to setting fire to an old manuscript! However after running down a flight of stairs twenty times (in a corset and heels!) I realised why they had requested a body double!

Mirror Picture: In costume

As I mentioned earlier, the house was definitely haunted: as I was shooting one scene (running down a corridor) I ran into the main entrance hall of the house, and from the floors above came the sound of a baby crying! How spooky!

The spooky sound of the crying baby came from up here somewhere!

It was a long and tiring day, but I can't wait to see the final result - I shall post it as soon as I can!

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Edinburgh Fringe Festival Fun

Edinburgh Castle in the sunshine

Day One:
I travelled up to Edinburgh with Glorian Gray and Havana Hurricane and after dumping all of our stuff in the flat we were sharing, we headed into the city centre to have a look around and get our bearings.

The Royal Mile

My first show of my Fringe run was Lili La Scala's 'Another F*cking Variety Show' in the Ace Dome at the Pleasance Dome, and it was an incredible line-up to kick off my week, including Beatrix Von Bourbon, Boy With Tape On His Face, Abi Collins, Dusty Limits and more!

Mirror Picture! With Lisa Lottie, Lili La Scala and Mat Ricardo

With Beatrix, and a tiny Amelie Soleil!

Day Two
The weather was on our side today and we made the most of it, wandering through the city in the sunshine and visiting vintage stores

Vintage Store ** You know you're in Scotland when...

In the evening I went with Glorian and Havana to their show: 'Gutter Lane' at Jekyll and Hyde

Glorian and Havana ready to perform

Then across town for my first show: Kabarett, at Voodoo Rooms

With Bettina Spankenhaus and the Phantom!

After Kabarett, Havana and I raced across town to the Sapphire Rooms to watch Joe Black's show 'Sex, Drugs and Vaudeville' which was amazing, then dashed back to Voodoo Rooms for 'Magic Faraway' which was my second show of the night.

And finally, Midnight Kabarett - also at the Voodoo Rooms, which meant that even though I had three shows in an evening, they were all in the same place, making life a LOT easier!

After Midnight Kabarett: With Impressive Johnson and Cherryfox

Day Three:
I managed to get hold of a couple of Fringe Guides so we planned shows that we wanted to see - we began by going to Counting House to watch Pete Saunders show 'Burlesque and Blues' which was fantastic, then Dave the Bear's show 'Hairy Pretty Things' at Fingers Piano Bar which was also brilliant! 

Edinburgh Sunshine

My first show of the evening was 'Kabarett' at Voodoo Rooms, followed by 'Another F*cking Variety Show' at Pleasance. Both shows were packed and great fun!

How to remove glitter! With Lady Rizo and her entourage!

Day Four:
During the afternoon we visited Joe Black's apartment for tea in the sunshine, then in the evening I prepared for another two shows: this time the infamous 'Bongo Club Cabaret' where I finally got to meet the gorgeous Wild Card Kitty, and, after a race across town, 'Another F*cking Variety Show'

With Patrick Monahan at 'AFVS'

Day Five:
My last day in Edinburgh and I did it in style! Beginning with another 'Kabarett' at Voodoo Rooms:

Mirror Picture! With Cat Aclysmic and Magenta Lust

After which I went across town to Assembly at George Square to watch Lady Rizo's amazing show, which is probably one of the best shows I've seen at the Fringe this year.

My final show was 'Another F*cking Variety Show': ending with a bang! And we all went for pizza afterwards!

Pizza! With Daniel Oldaker, Lisa Lottie, Matt Ricardo, Lili La Scala and Boy With Tape on His Face

Oh, and by 'all', I definitely mean ALL...

With Beatrix von Bourbon Cherryfox Cherry Loco, Amelie Soleil, Josephine Shaker, Sean Mooney, Lili La Scala, Mr Mistress, Tricity Vogue, Dee Itsy, Ria Lina and Paul Dabek
(And there was another table full around the corner as well!)

Amelie and Cherry Loco ** Tricity Vogue with Mr. Sniffles

I had a 5am coach to catch, but fortunately I was with cabaret folk who do not know the meaning of an early night, and they kept me awake long enough to make the hellish journey back home!

Club hopping, Cabaret Style!

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

London Sunshine

Another busy weekend, in the glorious sunshine of London Town!

Screen-shot off my phone of the 'Rouge' website

On Thursday I was excited to be performing at the gorgeous new 'Rouge Bar' in Barbican: the venue is beautiful and decorated in a modern speakeasy style, which I loved.

I was the only Burlesque performer that evening, and as it's not officially open yet (launch is in September) the crowd was small but very enthusiastic.

Solo Mirror Picture

On Friday night I was headlining at Proud Cabaret - this venue is one of my favourites as it is like stepping back in time as soon as you head down the stairs, and everyone who works there is lovely too!

Proud Cabaret

I was excited for a few reasons for this show: firstly because Chrys Columbine was also performing and it was lovely to catch up with her again after not seeing her for about two years! Also because my Uncle Peter was in London and had come to watch the show (first time he's seen me perform Burlesque!) And finally because my gorgeous Elle Amour was performing for another show in town and came to Proud for the post-show drinks... of which there were many...
With Kitty Devine, Elle Amour and a bottle of pink wine!

The line-up is always fabulous at Proud and included Kitty Devine, Scarlet Cuffs and Ben Brown, all held together by the hysterically funny Velma Celli.  As Kitty was also performing, she recorded my 'Sugar' act and the video is up on my website - thank you!!

With Chrys Columbine, Scarlet Cuffs and Elle Amour

To round off a trio of weekend shows, I headed back to Rouge for the Saturday night show - yet again a small but perfectly formed audience! I had worked a little on my 'Lust' costume, adding more sparkles and glitter, and it was nice to debut the new outfit in such a gorgeously appropriate setting.

I'm off to Edinburgh for the Fringe Festival this week, so expect lots and lots of pictures!!

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Burlesque Show On Tour

Goodness me - I am the most tired thing that ever was tired! But it has been worth it - I have had a fabulous long weekend with my Burlesque Show Family as we took over the beautiful town of St. Helier in Jersey for the latest stop on the tour!

Playing in the sandpit

The 'weekend' actually began on Wednesday as Taz and I drove to Lincoln to meet Elle Amour and begin an epic road-trip to Poole together (complete with the remaining two cabaret kittens, who were being very well behaved despite the massive detour on the way to their new home!)

Seen on the way to Poole - full rainbow, and Stonehenge!

After a lovely restful night in a guest house, Elle and I took ourselves off around Poole Harbour for the morning, and ended up exploring the museum to escape the rain!


Playing in Poole Museum

After a quick coffee, we met with some more cast members and checked in for our ferry to Jersey!

The captain announced that the crossing would be particularly choppy that day, and he was right! Despite taking copious amounts of anti-sickness pills, ginger chews and as much ginger beer as we could cope with, we all felt a little bit queasy and we were glad to finally reach land some four and a half hours later!

Seeing the ship off with Elle Amour, Kittie Klaw, Flixx Demontrant, Coco Malone and Fancy Chance

Last glimpses of England

Once we arrived at our hotel, we were all famished so left it to Fancy Chance to take us somewhere nice to eat, and she didn't disappoint. After a lovely meal we were all exhausted and a night-cap in the Jersey Grand hotel finished me off for the evening!

Casa Mia! With James, Coco, Kittie, Fancy, Elle and Elliot

The next morning we were up early, as Elle, Kittie, Coco, Flixx and I were heading out for a day of pimping and promotion!

All dolled up!

First stop was BBC Radio Jersey where we were being interviewed about the show, and I can honestly say I was terrified! Put me onstage in front of a thousand people if you must, but pop me in a studio with a microphone and one other person and I'll freeze!
It went well though, and if you can cope with me sounding like a posh twelve year old child, then you can listen to a clip of the show here

Interviews with the BBC Don'cha know!

After our interview, we went to the theatre and got our first look at the life-sized cutouts that had been advertising the show for the past couple of weeks!


I'm a cardboard cutout!!

We spent a fun couple of hours in the high street, dancing around, shouting and generally causing as much of a distraction as possible. It was worth it, as we got to pose with the Jersey rugby team, ate ice cream and found out that ticket sales had gone through the roof and we'd sold out both shows! 

Jersey Opera House

The theatre itself was beautiful, our tech team were incredibly helpful, and the audiences (both nights) were some of the best I've ever performed to! It was also the first time I came offstage after finishing an act and though "Yep, happy with that!" as I'm usually such a nit-picker over my performances.

Mirror Picture: with Coco Malone (eating my head, it seems!) Ilke and Elan (on their wedding anniversary weekend) Kittie Klaw, Elle Amour, Flixx Demontrant and Fancy Chance

Everyone in the cast was on form this weekend: Kiki Kaboom was hosting and she was in her element with such an enthusiastic audience. Fancy Chance performed her Alice act, which is one of my favourites (and she was impressed that the audience got all of her drug references! Hahaha) Flixx brought the house down with his Frog Prince act, as did Coco Malone with her incredibly sexy rendition of 'You Can Leave Your Hat On'  and Elle's new 'Summertime' act is one of the most mesmerising performances I've ever seen. Elan was on form, as always, Jim Devereaux got one of the biggest cheers of the night at the end of the first half, but Elliot Mason is my new hero after powering through illness to perform two brilliant sets!

I fling my stocking into the audience during 'Lust' and the gentleman who caught it asked me to autograph it after the show!

I'm so proud to be part of such an amazing cast!

Elle and I made the front page of the Jersey Evening Post!

The weather the next day was a little bit changeable - typical as it was our day off and we had planned to do lots of touristy things! However we did all meet for breakfast then I went with Kittie to nosy round the old castle as I love architecture and history, then, showing our ages, we all headed back to our hotel for afternoon naps before another fabulous show in the evening!

Breakfast with a view of the castle

It was another sell-out and we found out that audience members from the previous night had been calling to ask if they could get tickets again! 

Mirror Picture! With Coco, Flixx, Elle, Kiki, Kittie and Fancy

After the show, we were slightly mobbed by audience members in the bar, and the lady who had claimed the giant cardboard cutout of me asked us all if we would sign it for her! She cried!


And despite us all having to be up early to catch the ferry home, we stayed up celebrating two fabulous shows and toasting our success!

Full Cast 

The crossing back to England was much smoother, however we were informed that there were adverse tides meaning the journey took nearly two hours longer than scheduled! Fortunately there was sunshine and a nice breeze so we spent most of our time on deck enjoying the weather.

Beautiful sunshine leaving Jersey

Thank you everyone involved in 'The Burlesque Show' for such a wonderful weekend - lets do it again!