A Muse Mondays: Bianca Boom Boom

Now, this little lady is short and sweet! She’s concise and explosive. The first time I met her in the halls of the Toronto School of Burlesque, she greeted me with the gusto only she can bring. And she is that firecracker. That double burst of bubble-pop. She is the Triple B with the Double D’s: Bianca Boom Boom!

Gracie: Thank you so much for taking the time to jam with me. You know to hang around old school style. I’m gonna ask you a few questions and I want you to say the first things that pop into you head. How did you get your name?

Bianca: Originally I wanted to have Bijoux as part of my name and someone suggested Boom Boom to go along with it. I thought about Boom Boom Bijoux but found Boom Boom L’Roux and decided it was too close. I then decided I would keep Boom Boom instead as a last name, that I wanted a “real” first name and that I definitely wanted alliteration. Bianca comes from The Taming of The Shrew. She is Kate’s (the Shrew) younger sister, the one the boys all go crazy for! I really love the juxtaposition of the sweet sounding Bianca and the in your face of the BOOM BOOM! Suits me perfectly 😉

Gracie: How long have you been on the scene?

Bianca: 2 years!

Gracie: Do you have a signature colour?

Bianca: I don’t have one on stage per say BUT I always have my red glitter lips and red Amber Ray hair flower!

Gracie: Can you pick a  favourite body part?

Bianca: It’s a tie: The Booms (tatas) and The Bangs (gams)

Gracie: What is your most unique costume piece or prop?

Bianca: THE BOOMS!!

Gracie: I’m starting to see a pattern here;) What is your favourite part of creating a new act?

Bianca: The AH-HA! Moment of discovering the song, costume piece or movement that make it all come together. You never know when or where it will happen!

Gracie: Is there a theme dream out there taunting you? A show you’d love to be a part of?

Bianca: I have actually already had the opportunity to be a part of my 2 biggest dream theme shows: Broadway and Lady Gaga!

Gracie: Well, dream achieved then. What is your favourite venue to perform?

Bianca: In town: Revival Bar. On the road: Molly Blooms (Stratford), 3 Clubs (Los Angeles)

Gracie: Hey, wait, that’s 3 places. But I guess all 3 B’s get a choice. Now, for the loaded question: Do you think you’ll ever retire?

Bianca: NO!!!!!

Gracie: Almighty then, what words would you like to share with budding show ponies?

Bianca: 

  • Watch all the burlesque you can. If you can’t afford to go to local shows, ask to help out as a kitten or on the door. Watch YouTube and BurlesqueStars.net; Figure out what you like, what you don’t and what you want to put out into the world. You will quickly see what makes the performers who are tops, tops.
  • Research before developing an act. There is a lot of material out there and chances are something similar to your idea may already be in existence.
  • Think about your backstage etiquette. It is just as important (if not more) than your onstage etiquette.
  • Make sure your act is ready to be onstage before you put it there. Having one really good, polished act is far more valuable then having 20 unpolished numbers.
  • Take class when you have the opportunity. It doesn’t have to be burlesque. There are heaps of classes that will enhance your skill set (or help you gain a new one!) and help you develop as a performer and a human being.

Gracie: Thank you so much! As always you’ve been a delight. You have become a positive example in our Toronto community and a charming Ambassador to the states and soon the world. For all my readers, you can follow Bianca’s festival frenzy and local shows at the links below. See you next week!

Website: biancaboomboom.tk

Facebool: Bianca Boom Boom Fan Page

Twitter: @BiancaBoomBoom

Instagram: @BiancaBoomBoom 

20140630-025207-10327254.jpg

20140630-025518-10518081.jpg

Advertisements

A MUSE MONDAY: Charlie Quinn

Now, every new showgirl knows that backstage can be a little daunting. The hairspray fog, the glitter in the air, the blue air from a foul mouthed drag queen, it’s all a bit much. That is until the air clears for one perfect second and a platinum goddess whispers through her red glimmering lips, that Doris Day is her jam. Charlie and I were fast friends. We both think smiles are a valuable currency, think fun should be the goal of any good adventure and that we should dance like nobody’s watching, though she is a way better dancer than I. On more than one occasion I have found myself tangled up in a joke with her that nobody else seems to think is funny, which only endears her more to me. And though our very tight schedules have kept us apart for longer than I’d like, I know we’ll be able to fall into step without much hassle. Emphasis of course on the falling;) So, without further adieux, Ladies and Gentlemen, the Quintessential Player: Ms Charlie Quinn!

Alex Hurter of Ifyoufallphotography www.ifyoufallphotography.com

Alex Hurter of Ifyoufallphotography
http://www.ifyoufallphotography.com

Gracie: Ladybird, thank you so very much for taking the time to answer a few questions. I can tell your Iced Capp is low, so I’ll keep this short. How did you get your name?

Charlie: I’ve always been called Charlie by my family growing up and preferred it to my given name. Originally, I debuted as “Charlie Baby” and after some continued research, I’d found a drag queen online who also went by the name so it was back to the drawing board. I was already planning a bunch of characters to reveal and I couldn’t seem to think cleverly enough to create something that resembled me and the multitude of characters I wanted to have. “Sherry Keylime” was a name I had thought, because I, simply, love key lime pie…but I didn’t like “Charlie Keylime”. Charlie Knoxville had kick to it, but it didn’t mean anything to me. I was sitting in a hotel in London, Ontario for work watching old Saturday Night Live after a 15-hour day with my coworker and the Weekend Update portion came on with Colin Quinn. I had been adding surnames to Charlie for months and just said it to myself “Charlie Quinn”. I had learnt of harlequin’s vaguely years ago and I had understood it as a sort of multiple personified devil and ran with it. The description of what and how harlequin came to be is sooo much more interesting and layered and the more research I do, the more I agree with it as my alias.

Gracie: How long have you been on the scene?

Charlie: I kittened about from June 2011 to December 2011. I debuted in December 2011 in Coco Framboise’s “Up-your-Chimney” show and then debuted my first act February 2012 at Red Herring’s first Reveal Me alongside Bianca Boom Boom, Melody Merlot, Skaii Walker and others. That’s about 2 years and a bit? Yeah?

Gracie: What’s your signature colour?

Charlie: I try not to stick to one colour but lately it’s either white and yellows or red. Anything that goes with my platinum blonde hair!

Gracie: Who is your Showgirl inspiration?

Charlie: It’s a mix of Doris Day, Marilyn Monroe and Cyd Charisse!

Gracie: That’s a trifecta of titillation if there ever was one! But on to serious matters, Do you tassel? Both directions?

Charlie: I tassel all the things. I am known for my debut act “The Mask” having assels or ass tassels that I learnt from a class with travelling headliner, Peekaboo Pointe.

Gracie: How do you build a new act? What comes first: Song, costume, concept?

Charlie: I have a forever-long list on my phone with songs that inspire ideas. It’s a very unorganized list that I can peruse to inspire new ideas. I am usually inspired by the music first and foremost and then the act creates itself. I dance to the song at least 30-60 times on repeat in my apartment the few days leading up to a show. I have a rough guideline to what I want the plot to be (if any) and I will know any musical cues that tell me I have a minute or less left of a song. I like to be current and in the moment with my audience and I could choreograph, however, dancing to the song multiple times I find that the same series of movements come out sometimes at the right moments, and that’s enough of a plan for me right now.

Gracie: If you weren’t a showgirl, what would you be?

Charlie: A unicorn. Nah, I’m already a unicorn onstage. I would be making costume pieces and probably stuff for showgirls. I already do that but I know I would never be completely removed from the stage.

Gracie: Do you have any words of wisdom for brand new and aspiring showponys?

Charlie: Before I go on stage I like to remind myself that the person I am out there and who I want them to see, is the best possible version of myself, and if for some reason they do not like it, then at least I was genuine and honest.

Charlie, as always you’ve been a delight and an absolute pleasure, which I’ve told you on more than one Cinnamon whiskey fuelled night. I can’t wait until our schedules simmer down a little more and we can spend some much-needed banana time together. To all my readers, follow Charlie on all the social media forums. You know you’re gonna anyways! I mean she’s hot AND funny.

Website: http://www.charliequinnTO.weebly.com

Facebook: facebook.com/Charlie.Quinn.TO

Twitter: @CharlieQuinnTO

Instagram: @charliequinnto

Youtube: youtube.com/CharlieQuinnTO

A Muse Mondays: El Toro

I just got back from Show Pony Mecca Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekender last week. Where all the dresses are sequinned and everybody has rhythm but me. As I compile my new international Muses, I am delighted to continue shining a light on my local Toronto talent, who’ve also been spreading their global wings. I met today’s Muse after watching his signature feats of strength from a distance. My GFF (gym friend forever), then casually waved me over to introduce me to the man behind the myth. And later I had the pleasure of getting to know him outside of the dressing room at her holiday party. His performance story is as interesting, as his background is varied. There is no end to how this ac-romantic man can lift, pose and launch himself into your heart, both as a performer and a person. So, it is with great pleasure that I introduce you to, the man who does all the heavy lifting: El Toro!

Photo Credit Benjamin Ripley

Photo Credit Benjamin Ripley

Gracie: Thanks, for taking the time with me, now let’s get down to business. How did you get your name?
El Toro: A drunk night with Mahogany Storm, Obskyura. Came from a discussion about my style, energy and self-imposed requirement of a Spanish name. (Fun fact: as A child my mom would call me Torito which means little bull)

Gracie: How long have you been on the scene?
El Toro: Over 3 years

Gracie: Signature colour?
El Toro: NAKED! … probably blue or red

Gracie: Who’s your biggest fan?
El Toro: Not sure, but Jon Cayen has a poster of my ass in his home.

Gracie: Do you have a signature move?
El Toro: Some variation of handstand or stall

Gracie: Do you have formal training?
El Toro: Diploma in Theatre performance from Humber and several years of dance training with various companies

Gracie: Do you tassel? Both directions?
El Toro: I can but rarely do

Gracie: Hmmm, I’d like to see that. What is your favourite peel and reveal?
El Toro: A mask or underwear, under underwear, under underwear

Gracie: Do you have a favourite body part?
El Toro: Pectoral

Gracie: Does your audience have a favourite body part?
El Toro: Arms or Bum

Gracie: What is your favourite style of movement?
El Toro: ERRATIC!! **Please note this was said while in a handstand

Gracie: What is your favourite part of a new act?
El Toro: Developing a story especially the absurdist elements

Gracie: How do you build it?
El Toro: I use dance and physical theatre techniques towards story. What comes first differs from act to act.

Gracie: Your most unique prop or costume piece?
El Toro: A chain of medallions which in some acts serves as a necklace and others as a crotch piece

Gracie: What is your characteristic style?
El Toro: Absurd **Please note this was said while in full make up as presented in the above photo

Gracie: What is the most important part of you number?
El Toro: Surprise/ f**king with expectation

Gracie: What’s the most unique show you’ve been a part of?
El Toro: The Bacchanal with Love Letters

Gracie: Ah. Pastel Supernova is a fantastic choreographer and creative director. What is your favourite venue in your current city and on the road?
El Toro: Toronto: Revival

Gracie: Who is your favourite local showgirl?
El Toro: Too hard to say

Gracie: If you weren’t a show pony, what would you be?
El Toro: It’s inherently part of my theatrical life

Gracie: Do you think you’ll ever retire?
El Toro: Not from the stage but I may shift my role

Gracie: Do you have any words of wisdom for budding showgirls?

El Toro: Go wild! When you find a concept challenge yourself to go further and deeper, pick at the details and don’t hesitate to fall on your face in search of something amazing

Thanks again to El Toro, for taking the time to share his wit and wonder with me, so I can share him with you! If you missed him at Sinful Sundays yesterday you can see him in the upcoming, Boylesque TO’s Welcome to Manada!

Follow El Toro and stay in touch….Mmm touch.

Facebook: Facebook.com/eltoroburlesque
Twitter: @SMarziali

A MUSE MONDAYS: Johnny B. Goode

I met our next show pony in the dark, surrounded by clowns, and our first impulse was to talk in really bad accents for the whole night. From then on I was smitten. He lends his voice – and body – to those showgirls in need. Whether he’s singing for a strip, being a scene stealing man-prop, host with the most-ing or dancing up in the DJ booth; this throwback is the return of the Mac, who never really left: BOOM! POW! The one and only, Johnny B. Goode. 539275_166368536821559_1756757930_n

Gracie: Thanks for taking this time for me. Let’s jump right in. How did you get your name?

Johnny B. Goode: I actually started out as ‘Johnny Bravo’ for obvious reasons, but after a friend of mine left a cheeky comment referencing the song ‘Johnny B Goode’ on some social media platform, I decided to change it up.

Gracie: How long have you been on the scene?

Johnny B. Goode: I wasn’t really involved in the Burlesque community until I teamed up with my two main gals, Stella and Belle. Our first show as a group was November 11, 2011.

Gracie: Signature colour?

Johnny B. Goode: I guess I would say black. I wear a lot of black jackets with embellishments on the shoulders.

Gracie: Who’s your biggest fan?

Johnny B. Goode: I’ve had a couple of ‘fan moments’ throughout the city, but I guess our friend Joe is one of our biggest. We like to make sure he’s at all of our productions.

Gracie: Who is your Showgirl inspiration?

Johnny B. Goode: Can I say Beyonce?

Gracie: Do you have a signature move?

Johnny B. Goode: I sing while people strip #bestjobever

Gracie: Do you have formal training?

Johnny B. Goode: Couple years of opera when I was quite young and dance training for almost 8 years in hip-hop, lyrical jazz, and 4 years modern.

Gracie: Do you have any secret talents?

Johnny B. Goode: Wouldn’t you like to know? 😉

Gracie: What was your burlesque ah-ha moment?

Johnny B. Goode: Our Destiny’s Child DIVA OFF was a really awesome night for me. There were quite a few snags in the show, things not working right, set ups taking longer than practiced, but it was kind of the first time that I realized that when I was on stage by myself people WANTED to hear what I had to say. I wasn’t just filler between sets of boobs.

Gracie: What is your favourite peel and reveal?

Johnny B. Goode: I love a good tear-away pant.

Gracie: Do you have a favourite body part?

Johnny B. Goode: On myself? My hair’s my thing.

Gracie: What is your favourite style of movement? (ie: erotic, erratic, erroneous)

Johnny B. Goode: I guess I would say erotic. Sexy is easy to mimic. Funny is a little bit harder.

Gracie: What is your favourite part of a new act?

Johnny B. Goode: I LOVE developing acts. Finding music to tell the story, creating a costume and all the details you have to remember because someone will have to strip out of it.

Gracie: How do you build it? What comes first: Song, costume, concept?

Johnny B. Goode: I think concept, then music, then costume. But at any given time throughout development, the act could change completely.

Gracie: What is your favourite costume piece?

Johnny B. Goode: I have a jacket with sequined shoulders and floor length fringe. I want to wear it always. oh, and I have a diamond encrusted leather vest. Does that count? Haha.

Gracie: What is your characteristic style?

Johnny B. Goode: Basically Johnny Bravo.

Gracie: What is the most important part of your number?

Johnny B. Goode: It’s all important. A great costume can make an act awesome as much as a horrible song choice can make it not so awesome.

Gracie: What’s the strangest thing that ever happened to you backstage?

Johnny B. Goode: Percy Katt and Lady Bonah rolling around in an entire container of glitter emptied out on the floor. Strange? Maybe not, but awesome.

Gracie: What’s the most unique show you’ve been a part of?

Johnny B. Goode: Our Platinum Holiday Special was one of my favourites.

Gracie: Is there a dream theme you want to perform?

Johnny B. Goode: Once we get some more DIVA OFFs under our belt, I’d love to do a DIVA OFF: ALL STARS.

Gracie: Favourite venue in your current city and on the road?

Johnny B. Goode: For Toronto, MOD Club has got to be it. Just the amenities they have available are really awesome. Lights, smoke, sound equipment.

Gracie: Who is your favourite local showgirl?

Johnny B. Goode: No way I can choose favourites. I love so many! Though, I do have an affinity for blondes…

Gracie: Lucky blondes*wink. If you weren’t a showpony, what would you be?

Johnny B. Goode: Probably working within the fashion industry in some capacity.

Gracie: Do you think you’ll ever retire?

Johnny B. Goode: From the Burlesque world? Probably. Performing, no.

Gracie: Do you have any words of wisdom for budding showgirls?

Johnny B. Goode: Find a rehearsal space where you can watch yourself in a mirror, and remember that, no one’s life is a stake here. If you’re not having fun, you’re doing it wrong.

Gracie: Aw, Johnny, as always it was an absolute delight and I look forward to my triumphant return to the Glitter Den. And spending more time with 3 of Toronto’s Top Blondes. That rounds out our Platinum Production A Muse series. Don’t forget to follow Johnny, Belle Jumelles and St Stella for info about upcoming A Platinum Production – Productions!

Facebook: facebook.com/johnnybravogoode

Instagram: @goJBGgo

Twitter: @goJBGgo

AND

A Platinum Production: facebook.com/APlatinumProduction

Twitter: @platinumpowerx3