THE BIG REVEAL WITH IMMODESTY BLAIZE
QUICK FIRE WARM UP
Dance in stilettos
Enter to music, kapow!
All of the above, I have a lot of curvature to put to work
2 part moisturiser, one part Armani foundation on a soft mitt
Alpine air, no wig. Sauna, wig.
Va va voom!
The final corset tighten
Scented travel candle – some of those old theatre dressing rooms are too funky
AND NOW THAT YOU’RE WARMED UP….
The movie Gypsy, Mazeppah bumping with her trumpet. I sure wasn’t a cute or pretty gal so characters with personality and chutzpah got me excited.
When I got my show into the West End back in 2005 (UK’s version of being on Broadway) and we extended the run to 5 months and over 150 shows. That was a lot of work and closed doors to kick open to get there, so it was huge for me as a personal goal, and also for burlesque in the UK too. But when Dixie Evans invited me to compete at Burlesque Hall of Fame, it felt like acceptance from the legends who paved the way for us, and also acceptance from my peers who I admired so much. Winning the pageant was a juicy cherry on the already sparkling cake.
Fellini, Ava Gardner, Grace Jones, Lili St Cyr, Jackie Collins, Sophia Loren.
It was an ironic play on Modesty Blaise, the comic strip of a female spy and hit-woman created in the 1960s by Peter O’Donnell. I resembled her for a brief moment in time.
For the grocery run I’m the Barefoot Contessa in full wild curly hair and corseted petticoats, with a straw basket full of fresh caught fish and fruity sweet treats from the cute boys at the local French Riviera market. Immodesty au naturel.
I’ve got a favourite slinky catty repertoire on my chaise, but my bumps ‘n’ grinds get the audience whipped up the most
Probably the Folies Bergere replica headdress which I commissioned from Las Vegas Showgirl Museum. Grant Philippo built it in collaboration with the original welder who made the Folies pieces. A little slice of showgal history.
My feather and diamante bra landing on a hot light and catching fire, and the theatre having to close for the rest of the night for the black smoke and fumes to clear. The smell of burning feathers and rhinestones is like no other.
Out of 20 years of shows it’s hard to choose, but one of my ‘pinch me’ highlights was being a support act for James Brown, godfather of soul. Ditto having to top the show after Gloria Gaynor singing her iconic ‘I will survive’, an impossibly hard act to follow! Being flown to Monaco to perform for HSH Prince Albert was cute, because my first number was straight after his national anthem played, which is always the royal custom to show His Highness is actually present at the show, and everyone stands to honour him. It’s the most unique show-opening I’ve ever had! (I guess I turned out a great performance too as it caught the eye of the man I ended up marrying!) But out of any show, live TV has been the most nerve wracking. Being a guest star on a huge show like Dancing With The Stars, I knew I was beaming out to millions of people, who were all seeing every eyelash, wrinkle and bead of sweat in HD, and any tiny slip I might make. I was FULL of butterflies. It’s a different kind of pressure from live theatre, and makes you grow your b*lls each time.
Liberace, if the heavens could please arrange a second-coming!
The Royal Opera House London is incredible, and it was amazing to be given Maria Callas’ former dressing room, with her bronze sculpture looking over me—what a good talisman. For camp-ness, the Tower Ballroom Blackpool is off the scale, it’s like performing inside a Faberge egg. Historic theatres in Europe are such a marvel.
Rarely in the gym—I prefer au naturel; mountain hikes, paddleboard, sea swimming, open air kettlebells, and of course between satin sheets!
I keep myself to myself so any peeves are water off a duck’s back, best place for them
That would be so weird!
A small statue of Mother Mary.
I have a 5 minute breathing exercise. I’m also an introvert; weird, but I need as much solitude as possible before showtime.
Exemption for all from digital platform tata censorship and shadow bans. Also being subjected to ridiculous time-and-energy-wasting nudity double standards.
Performance power and presence holds an audience captive. The beauty is in who you’re BEING and what you’re DOING up there, so prioritise your energy, performance and act. Don’t feel pressured into bankrupting yourself on a costume right out of the gate, rhinestones won’t cover up a wooden performance. Find and flex your fierce fabulosity first.
All the other things I already do alongside – my writing, public speaking, and my Mind-Body Eating coaching practice and retreats. It’s so fulfilling to serve my sisters and see their transformations and profound shifts.
Memories schmemories, they get dressed up, dressed down, and rewritten to suit purpose. But impact has longevity. So long as I’m making a positive impact in the moment, those are the effects that are felt and continue to ripple out in the big picture. All the world’s a stage, Stay in the moment!