Saturday, March 29, 2008

Puppet Groupie

Last Saturday I was a puppet groupie. Andrew had a marionette gig last Saturday. He goes to all of my shows, carrying my things, making sure I have a full bottle of water and any props I need. Usually his marionette gigs conflict with my dance classes or show rehearsals so I don't get to see them. This was my first chance to see him perform this style of puppetry.

I had so much fun. The marionettes (who shall remain nameless since I also post about burlesque dancing) "posed" with kids for digital photos. Then I helped backstage with the show. I'll have to watch the video of the show from the crowd. The day ended with about an hour and a half more of photos with the kids.

I have to brag about Andrew. He was just a hand puppeteer a year ago. He found a marionette job posted online, and now he's getting paid for his marionette work -- often more than I make for an evening of burlesque. He's very focused and professional and always interested in tackling new challenges. His next challenge is building a marionette for one of my burlesque numbers.

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Friday, March 28, 2008

My Not-So-Secret New Project

I'm very picky as an actor. I like certain scripts, and I don't like others. I like getting paid (especially getting paid something near what I make at my day job) and I don't like doing work for free unless I really believe in the project for whatever reason. I'm not as young as I used to be, and my time is precious and best spent wisely.

In January of this year, I helped form a new theatre company. I want to put my energy into things I'm passionate about (hence the burlesque activities that have dominated my blog for some months). The idea was to create remarkable theatre in a town that's not geared toward theatre like New York is.

I love the people in the company. I'm a member of the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee so I can help shape the company. I'm also on the play selection committee so I get to help find remarkable shows. I'm very excited about the work we're doing.

We also have a marketing team. There are several people involved in planning our promotion rather than one lone guy having to handle all the leg work. We're doing a viral marketing campaign to promote our first show, dropping images like the following in our Myspace bulletins and comments, sending the image to our email buddies, and trying to create a buzz while maintaining a mystery.

Of course, you already know all about it, don't you? Me and my big mouth.

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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

And More Alex

Here's another shot of me as Alex after the milk bar statues take me down.


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Synchronized Swimming

Here are more Kubrilesque photos. These are from 2001: A Space Odyssey. It starts off with a bunch of girls entering in gorilla costumes. (You can't tell which one is me in the photos, otherwise I'd post some of those. Then the girls strip off the gorilla costumes and do a "synchronized swimmer" dance in lingerie and NASA swim caps. It's quite ridiculous.

The show runs again on April 11th. I'll be back in the swim piece, A Clockwork Orange, and I'm doing Full Metal Jacket this time. It should be a very fun evening. Doesn't it look fun in the photos?

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Monday, March 24, 2008

168?!

Andrew shot my video application for Miss Exotic World weekend on Friday night. My teacher and friend, Lux LaCroix, ordered me to enter the debut category on my application. I have my fingers crossed that I can dance at one of the weekend parties since this would be my first time going to the event. I spent quite some time making and embellishing the costume and rehearsing with my music. Of course, I don't feel that the number is done yet. There's more to be worked through to make it perfect for June. I'm doing the number next Monday and Thursday to work out some of the kinks in front of live audiences, then again on May 1st.

Since I emailed in my application, I had to upload my video part of the application to You Tube and paste the link onto my application. I didn't expect Andrew to post any tags on the thing since it is a work-in-progress. Between Saturday morning and today, there have been 168 viewings. It's been favorited four times. What?! What?!

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Talk About Theatrical

This is a photo from Kubrilesque in March. There's another show in April. This is me as Alex in A Clockwork Orange. The yellow milk bar model is Dizzy Von Damn. Directly behind me is Scarlett Letter.

This piece was lots of fun. I was able to "beat up" the Droogies for fun and play around. My choreography was very loose. It was also my first time wearing a jock strap with cup. It gave me a very odd profile.

Wow. I look small next to Dizzy.

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Friday, March 14, 2008

What a Girl Wants

I'm incredibly fortunate. Life's not perfect -- there's never enough time and/or money for everything. All of my activities and an unsatisfactory experience with an Asian chicken salad have planted me at home for the day. My weeks have been so packed that I'm drained, and I have more activities every day until next Friday. (Of course, they are activities of my own choosing.)

But I remind myself that I am truly blessed. I may be home but I have Felicity sleeping on my feet and the kind of job where I can make at least a little money working from home when I'm under the weather. I'm making money as a dancer and I'm meeting more people and booking more gigs as time goes by. I also have the huge advantage of Andrew. He's very supportive and does whatever he can to help me get my stuff done.

In fact, he's so awesome that he built the prop highlight of my act for last night's Victory Variety Hour. I danced to a certain Monty Python song in celebration of men. I had a very curious-looking Jack-in-the-box rig that Andrew designed and built from my blabbered ideas. He also built eight talking swimmer puppets (seen in the photo) that he operated during my number. The crowd went wild when the puppets first popped up, and they cheered when the puppets returned. His timing was impeccable. You can see him looking thuggish behind the puppet stage in this photo.

It's this kind of guy that my friends are searching for. I'm pretty lucky.

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Networking

Before I moved to Los Angeles to pursue acting, I assumed the town would be ready to welcome me with open arms and put me right to work. I think this is a common assumption. When I got to Los Angeles, I found that this wasn't the way it worked. I was told I'd have to network so I could get agents and jobs from referrals. This networking thing sounded like I'd have to go to stupid gatherings and be phony just to get someone to give me a little help. I refused to do this. Instead, I started pursuing things I enjoyed and might meet people along the way. I've gotten a whopping two acting jobs from referrals, and I never got representation from networking.

I started studying burlesque last year in my pole class. I had so much fun that I sought out more education. I spent the last half of 2007 studying burlesque so I'd take off like a shot when I was ready. I started dancing for pay in January. I've met lots of wonderful people who would vouch for me. Strangers remember my name and ask when I'm performing again. Even better, people I've seen perform but haven't seen me are interested in booking me because the burlesque network is so good. It's no wonder that I've been putting so much energy into it!

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Sunday, March 09, 2008

Tradition's End

When I danced at The Scene for Burlesque-A-Go-Go on Thursday night, I found out we'd only do one more show at that venue. The owners are selling the bar, so it will no longer be open on Thursdays while they search for a buyer. It's a little sad since this was where I first debuted as Red Snapper for pay. It's a charming little club that seems a bit out of place in quiet Glendale.

The good news is that the show producers are working on a new venue for May. Hopefully this one will be in Hollywood or the surrounding area since that area has a pretty good draw. Let's keep our fingers crossed that this ending leads to an even better beginning.

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Wednesday, March 05, 2008

And for my next project . . .

I've been so incredibly busy. I'm on the executive committee of a theatre company that is being formed. I'm also on the board of directors while we get all of our policies in place. I have four shows this month, all with very different burlesque acts. I also have to complete my submission for participation in Miss Exotic World in June (for a lower-level category for my first year -- not Miss EW). I've been building dresses and making costumes and trying to get everything done in a day before collapsing at night.

I was speaking with fellow burlesque dancer, Vixen Violette, about hemming one of my dresses. She told me about how she uses her dress form and I mentioned I didn't have a dress form but really needed to buy one. (Dress forms are $200 and up, so you can see why I haven't purchased one yet.) She told me she made a custom dress form . . . with duct tape! I found the link and have big plans to make my own dress form for under $25. While it's another project, it will make some of my other projects much easier to complete.

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Sunday, March 02, 2008

Running

I've been running around a lot lately. Starting a theatre company takes a lot of time. I'm still building dresses, choreographing dances and rehearsing. Then there are the actual performances to address. That's kept me going so much that I feel a bit like a zombie in life.

At least I have a very dedicated fan at home to help me refocus. I think every girl needs a dog.

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