Sunday, October 26, 2014

Need Something to do Sunday?

Posted By on Sun, Oct 26, 2014 at 1:14 PM

  • Marc Wolverton Photography

Some people live to get into costumes. Any chance they get to sew a new getup, put on face paint or obscure their faces, they'll jump to it with gusto. For burlesque dancers, dressing up and acting out is part of the daily routine, and this close to All Hallows Eve, expect the unexpected—even on a Sunday.

Beginning at 8 p.m., at Pengilly's Saloon, join Frankly Frankie and a host of burlesque dancers and musicians for Frankly Burlesque. There, you'll catch wild acts by "Scream Queen" Leta Neustaedter, "Musette of Malice" Kelly Tells, Kelly Green, Za'Nyah Zi the Mesmerizing Maiden, Brandi Benson and Lotta Moxie.

There will also be games, sing-alongs, a raffle and spooky people who promise to be nearly naked.
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Friday, January 10, 2014

Red Light Variety Show Wins With Suggestion, Humor

Posted By on Fri, Jan 10, 2014 at 12:54 PM

A line 10 people deep shuffled and thrust hands into pockets waiting for the doors at the Visual Arts Collective to swing open the evening of Nov. 9. Inside, members of the Red Light Variety Show and Frim Fram 4 bustled about the stage, tugging at silks braided and suspended from the ceiling, and stocking the merchandise kiosk ahead of its winter showcase, titled Nostalgia. 

For an hour, guests of the pay-what-you-want preview event mingled and took in the art hanging on the walls, and by the time master of ceremonies Joe Golden took the stage to deliver a rummy introduction to the night's entertainment, the aura of informality hadn't worn off, which was a coup for the troupe. If RLVS' success were to be determined exclusively on how ecstatic the audience was at the end of the night, the standing ovation, loud cheers, whistles and cat calls gave the burlesque and vaudeville troupe as sterling a grade as you can get on a report card.

A 5-minute opening cast video in the silent movie style about a peeping tom ultimately apprehended by Technical Director James Sharp set the evening's tone with a smattering of back-stage humor and wacky antics. That was followed by a striptease by Frankly Frankie, in which the leggy brunette stripped down to a g-string and pasties from an already revealing Cleopatra costume. 

RLVS was at its best when it relied on tease, innuendo and humor, and its strongest performers—Frankly Frankie, Juniper Rose, James Sharp, Aayla de LaRue—are masters of the wink and come hither. Sharp and Frankie's white wedding routine, in which the pair play a bride and groom deciding on which toys and baubles to use on their wedding night, showed they belong to that rare breed of performers who see one stitch of costume as one stitch too many.

Alternately, the evening lagged where the performances were out of place in their earnestness or failed to have an object of satire. De LaRue's strip routine in a Sex Pistols T-shirt and cherry red, thigh-high leather boots was explosive and even awe-inspiring; her dance pole routine set to a downtempo cover of "House of the Rising Sun" and aerial silk performance were not. Other routines lacked horsepower, like Kelly Green's solo singing and Venus in a half-shell performances. Given Green's clear confidence in her own beauty and abilities as a performer, they were mystifyingly uninspired. 

The evening ended with an exuberant picnic shared by two cross dressers, played by Jax B. Nipple and guest Dylan Hughes, and set to "Summer Dreams," in which Nipple wore a shirt screen printed with a set of chest and stomach muscles, and Hughes wore white lingerie and bloomers. As the set came to a close, the crowd lept to its feet, the performance a clear success.

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Friday, May 31, 2013

Need Something To Do Friday?

Posted By on Fri, May 31, 2013 at 6:00 AM


Whether you're straight-laced or the sort who feels most comfortable in a costume and a mask, burlesque has something for you. For the adventurous it's yet another excuse for revelry and for the sanguine it's a chance to let one's freak flag fly.

Tonight at Beside Bardenay, Dapper Doyle and the Revelry Revue headline for A Back Alley Night of Class, a burlesque-themed party for one and all presented by MpowermentBOI, a nonprofit arm of ALPHA. Listen to music by Niobi Audio and DJ Myko, sip on mocktails and loosen your necktie from 6-10 p.m. The event is free to attend.

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Saturday, April 13, 2013

Need Something To Do Saturday?

Posted By on Sat, Apr 13, 2013 at 6:00 AM


Anyone who can walk knows the line "heel, toe," but when you're wearing a pair of pumps and trying to get from point A to point B in a hurry, you're startlingly conscious of the axiom.

A little discomfort might be the point of the second annual Stiletto Run, taking place today at 1 p.m. at the Julia Davis Park Bandshell. This mini .5k race is put on by Northwest Nazarene University's International Justice Mission and Sage Riverstone International School, and benefits global efforts to combat human trafficking.

Race categories include a womens' race, a mens' race and a stiletto baton relay. Though not everyone is required to wear heels while running, only those with 3-inch heels or above are eligible to win top prizes in the event.

The grand prize is an iPad Mini. Pre-registration is $10, and day-of registration is $15.

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Saturday, November 17, 2012

Need Something To Do Saturday?

Posted By on Sat, Nov 17, 2012 at 6:00 AM


You like to get your freak on: You seek out dance parties and your hair stands on end when someone mentions costumes, Halloween or Burning Man. Also, you're fond of cats, or dressing like one, at least.

If the above description sounds like you, there's the Pussycat Ball—a fun-filled evening of music, dancing, costumes, more costumes and burlesque.

A $10 entry fee gets you hours of electronic dance music by the likes of Sam Hood, Skape, Psycache Ziran and JustSomeClown. There will also be burlesque performances and, of course, a costume contest at 12 a.m.

A portion of the proceeds goes to the Simply Cats Adoption Center, so you'll be grooving for a good cause.

Things get started at 9 p.m., at the Rose Room, located at 718 W. Idaho St.

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Saturday, September 22, 2012

Slideshow: Red Light Celebrates the End of the World

Posted By on Sat, Sep 22, 2012 at 9:52 AM

About 200 people crowded into Visual Arts Collective on Friday, Sept. 21, to witness the end of the world as we know it, via the Red Light Variety Show.

There were go-go dancing zombies, flesh-eating ballerinas and neon-clad pole dancers, oh my! The show "The End is Near Here" used a variety of mediums to convey mixed emotions regarding the end of time.
"It's the most technical show we've ever done," said performer James Sharp. "It's fucking rad."

Red Light has performed with a variety of themes since its conception, but it appears that variety has helped gain them an evolving and loyal following.

"The thing that sets us apart, is that we can entertain with laughs for emotional highs but we're also not afraid to explore lows," said Sharp.

To be sure, the troupe has more than once acted out death in forms of murder and suicide, not to mention Friday's whole show was based upon the Apocalypse. But based the audience cat calls, hooting and hollering, it did not appear that anyone became depressed.

"I always make it a point to check out their every show," said audience member Star Warne. "I'm always surprised and amazed by what they do."

Click here to see a slideshow of the evening.

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Sunday, January 22, 2012

Pasties and Pastries Swings into the Red Room

Posted By on Sun, Jan 22, 2012 at 2:21 PM

Lady Bomb Deluxe

There were plenty of sweet treats at the Red Room on Jan. 20 during the burlesque-themed Pastries and Pasties Variety Show.

Several dozen people crowded lounge seating on the dance floor to view the cabaret, which featured striptease, singing, dancing and comedy. Performers included Christine Crumb, Lady Bomb Deluxe, Minerva Jayne and others.

The event was promoted by Let Them Eat Cake, a Boise organization that strives to promote a positive body image for every woman, regardless of how big, small, young or old she is. Miss Miranda Alane started the group after becoming frustrated when trying to break into pinup modeling a few years ago. [*Clarification: BW misunderstood Alane. In an email from her, she clarified: "... pin up modeling was the only genre that accepted me, it was when I tried to break into other genres outside of pin up modeling that I was rejected, being called too short and too fat. Pin up modeling has always embraced me ..." We regret the error.]

Event organizers requested donations-only at the door, to help the organization's outreach efforts. The evening also included wine tasting by Totally Random Wines, a raffle, a pastry booth and a merchandise table with various hats, shirts and art for the fundraiser.

"I've never been to a burlesque before; a friend talked me into coming," said Catherine Pellizzari of Boise.
"I like it. They seem to have so much confidence and really enjoy what they're doing."

You can view a slideshow of the event here.

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Sunday, November 20, 2011

Feline Fatales Storm the Pussycat Ball

Posted By on Sun, Nov 20, 2011 at 3:21 PM

Over 100 people dressed as colorful cats and rats on Nov. 19 at the fourth annual Pussycat Ball at the Rose Room.

The fundraiser included a performance from local burlesque troupe Pretty Little Things and a midnight costume contest with categories such as: Toughest Tom Cat, Prettiest Pussy and Cattiest Cat Toy.

Music was provided by a variety of DJs, including DRC (San Francisco), Team Sexy (Portland), DJ Myko and Psycache Ziran (Boise).

"These are good people, and about 20 percent of them are burners," said participant Justin Gates, referring to a nickname given to people who attend Burning Man.

Organizer Zachary Peterson said he has helped put on the event the last two years after his friend Nurse Jessica created it four years ago. He said the fundraiser gives proceeds to a different community entity every year. Last year it was Radio Boise and this year the proceeds were donated to the BoiseOne Rangers En Force.

Peterson explained the rangers are volunteers who donate their time at various events, specifically Burning Man, to help with crowd control, first aid and conflict resolution.

But on Saturday, there seemed to be no conflicts.

"It's about just having fun," Gates said.

You can view a slideshow of the Pretty Little Things burlesque performance here.

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Saturday, September 24, 2011

Slideshow: Red Light Variety Show Pulls Out All the Stops at Mythfablore

Posted By on Sat, Sep 24, 2011 at 5:59 PM

What do a pole dancer, the big bad wolf and a belly dancer have in common? The Red Light Variety Show.

The Red Light crew performed Mythfablore on Sept. 23 at Visual Arts Collective before a crowd of more than 100 patrons who whistled, cat-called and whimpered. This was no ordinary burlesque performance: In addition to sexy dancing, it also included hula hooping, ballet and aerial yoga, which added an eclectic twist to the show.

"We do it because it's fun, we like it and we're family," said Anne McDonald, the closest thing to a manager of the group. "And we don't mind pushing the limits."

Those limits included McDonald dirty dancing as Little Red Riding Hood and later, as a mermaid caught in a fisherman's net. The show was edgy but also artful and tasteful.

"I think it's inventive, creative and definitely sexy," said Brian Kenney, an audience member who returned this season to watch Red Light's latest show.

Red Light's Facebook page describes Mythfablore as an explanation of "the myths, fables and folklore that bind our past to the present."

Click here to see photos of Mythfablore. The show continues at VAC tonight and runs again on Friday, Sept. 30 and Saturday, Oct. 1.

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Saturday, September 17, 2011

Slideshow: Hot Mess Burlesque Heats Up the Balcony

Posted By on Sat, Sep 17, 2011 at 2:50 PM

A fed-up wife tied up her husband, punished him with a rolling pin and stripped off her clothes to celebrate. The audience cheered in laughter. This was one of many acts that evoked pain and pleasure throughout the Hot Mess Burlesque performance on Friday.

"I believe revenge is a dish actually best served hot," said Bobby Pins, a sultry soul-singing bombshell, to a small yet intimate crowd at the Balcony Club.

Pins is one of five women who sang, danced and worked the crowd in Hot Mess' vaudeville-style show titled Sweet Revenge.

"When you have the performance bug bite you, you can't get rid of it," said Mimi ma Shuga, the group's manager and hostess.

Shuga described the group's genre as "neo-burlesque," which aims to encompass a wider range of performance styles than just simply stripping. Between balloon and disco dances, Shuga hosted an audience-participation spelling bee, which included words like, "clusterfuck," "masturbation" and "cunnilingus." The show included live singing, drama, dancing and a three-member strip tease that left little to the imagination.

The hostess was upbeat, witty and quick on her feet when encouraging the room to participate. Clearly, she was having fun and did not take herself too seriously.

"We are just high-class, low-paid strippers," she joked.

Hot Mess Burlesque is staying busy this fall. The group is booked at: BurlyCon, a burlesque convention in Seattle, a local breast-cancer awareness event, Cans for Cans and is preparing a new show for the Balcony. Shuga says it's a busy schedule, but based around having fun.

Hot Mess will perform again tonight, Saturday, Sept. 17, at the Balcony at 8 p.m. Tickets are $8.

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