Dangerous Curves Ahead: a Review of Let My Bunnies Go!
– Written and photographed by Chris Blakeley, Contributing Writer/Photog (Seattle)
Shortly after you fall into burlesque you learn about the scenes in other cities, usually through stories of this act and that performer and that one time when she went on stage in the rope… (oh my god!) Unless you’ve got a lot of free time and cash on hand, usually your best option to see these performers is to travel to one of the growing number of burlesque festivals, where you can overdose on performances in a long weekend. Sometimes, however, you’ll find yourself lucky enough to have the performers come to you on a tour.
Last weekend, Seattle was very lucky indeed.
For the third time the combined talent of GiGi La Femme, Darlinda Just Darlinda, Clams Casino, Anita Cookie and Minnie Tonka have hit the road to bring their New York style to the rest of the country. On Friday, they came to Seattle for a special night of Let My Bunnies Go! at West Hall and blew the doors off with energetic burlesque dedicated to Easter and Passover, a natural combination of unleavened bread, second comings and… well… other things… rising.
I love a tour.
I love a tour because the logistics of the road require routine discipline. The performers take the stage with streamlined grace, lacking the big props and bigger wardrobes that they’ve left at home. Consequently, we’re treated to their distilled essences. I always feel that we see more of their personalities this way, which is a very real treat for me.
So here we have Anita Cookie’s sweet curves and sweeter smile, looking for all the world like she stepped out of a Batman cartoon (the good one, with Kevin Conroy). Her playfulness is evidenced by a bread-making routine set to a medley of, yes, Bread’s greatest hits. Then Clams Casino shimmies on the stage, an Easter basket come to life complete with bunny ears. In the second half, these two team up on a very special tribute to the film Ghost, complete with a “Ghostbuster”. For now, though, we’re just enjoying her sporty attitude, go-going about the stage showing her ears to best use.
No sooner has the audience caught its collective breath when GiGi La Femme appears, exuding (and that is the only word for it) a sassy sex kittenish attitude, demonstrating exactly why she’s winner of “Best Booty Shaker” at the New York Burlesque Festival two times running. I damn near forget to breathe and that’s before she comes back with a spanking number in the second act. And if that wasn’t enough for you, Darlinda Just Darlinda and Minnie Tonka come out as the Schlep Sisters, filling the room with a fire routine, heating up Seattle before heading to compete in this year’s Burlesque Hall of Fame in the “Best Group” category.
And that’s the first half! That’s before you consider Heidi von Haught’s Rock & Roll Messiah or the Schlep Sisters return to the stage in a two woman reenactment of Exodus, complete with the Red Sea and George Michael. What one has to do with the other I have no idea, but work with them! They have a vision!
Through it all, Indigo Blue conducted the show as only she could, complete with a cultural explanation for most things Jewish to the goyim in the audience. What I’m saying is she’s a maven for hosting. You’d plotz to see her in that treyf hat of hers.
As a long time fan of burlesque, the show was absolutely amazing and a tonic. Talking with my friends over drinks after, the word “raw” came up over and over again and I can’t argue with that. It was a slipstreamed tease of epic proportions. If you’ve never seen a burlesque show before and want to see what you’re missing, check out Dangerous Curves on tour. And if you’ve seen so many burlesque shows that you’re kind of burned out, check out Dangerous Curves and thank me for the refresher.