Category Archives: Photos and Videos

Sci-Fi Burlesque!

Our Sci-Fi themed show at the Elbo Room on Tuesday, September 14, was out of this world! We packed almost 250 people into the upstairs to see the approx. 25 burlesque acts, featuring the debut performances of the most recent Burlesquercise Intensive I graduates! If you missed all the fun, we will be repeating the event with most of the original acts plus a few new ones this Monday, September 20, at the Uptown in Oakland! More info here:

http://www.bombshellbetty.net/shows.html
http://www.facebook.com/#!/event.php?eid=128675187181761

Well bless my Star Wars! All that tassel twirling and shimmy-shimmy of burlesque, at times it seems you can’t turn around with a eyeful of curves hitting you at full speed in this town. Not that I’m complaining. But I must admit, I’ve always been concerned – when do the sci-fi aficionados get  their very own night of burlesque beauties? …Leave it to Bombshell Betty to heed my heart-felt cry for our darling and economically life-affirming nerds (you know we’re a cradle for Tech 2.0 or whatever, right?). Strutting the stage on a very special night at the Elbo Room (Tues/14) will be any number of ladies loving the heroes, the bad guys, the technology, the far-fetched cleavage of the sci-fi genre that you would think just begs for a little more spec-ta-ta-tacular exploitation…

Caitlin Donohue
SF Bay Guardian’s “SexSF” blog

Here are a few photo highlights! You can see many more fabulous photos by SF Station of the show at the Elbo Room here.

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Too Many F&$#ing Bunnies and photo fun!

Our April shows are going to be SO much fun. The theme is “Too Many F&$#ing Bunnies” and the acts that are scheduled are going to be so much mayhem and fivolity! Join us at the Glas Kat on April 28 for our 5th “Bombshell Betty Burlesque Bailout” show, benefiting local out-of-work, under-employed, and recently-laid-off actors, comedians, dancers, musicians and performers of all kinds!

Also, here are some photos of my act with Patina de Copper at the “Awards Show” Hubba Hubba Revue at the DNA Lounge on March 19. I am very excited about my new costume for that act! You can’t tell from these photos, but this act was Patina’s striptease debut. 😉

Patina helps me remove my gown...

I love these underpieces! Unfortunately, all the rhinestones don't show up in the photo!

Myself as me, Venomous Veronica Voom as a paparazzi, and Red Velvet as Joan Rivers for the Burlesqueteers 'Red Carpet Schtick.' Photo by Hanna Quevedo for SF Weekly.

 

Photo by Hanna Quevedo for SF Weekly.

Photo by Hanna Quevedo for SF Weekly.

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Clown Burlesque!

From my Clown on Rollerskates act at the Uptown in Oakland, 2008

Im really interested in burlesque dancing someday so I try to talk to as many people and get as much info as possible. I was interested in routines that use physical comedy. I came across the term “clown burlesque” but couldn’t find much about it- but when I entered the term in youtube some of your vids came up. I really liked them! I wanted to know if you could give me more information about clown burlesque- anything you know really- and if you can, lead me to more resources. I’d really appreaciate it. Thanks 🙂

Angel B.
Wethersfield, CT
Hi Angel,

I don’t know of any specific resources for clown burlesque, but I found some great links with background info on both peformance styles. Put them together, and there you are! Burlesque has always used elements of comedy and bawdyness, as you will see from reading, so many modern burlesque acts also combine sexuality with humor, whether in clown face or dressed as a traditional showgirl.

For me, burlesque is a great platform to juxtapose the traditionally beautiful/sexy with the ridiculous, bizarre, grotesque, and absurd. Dressing as a clown is one way to do this, but I also incorporate the same humor and physical comedy when portraying a more glamorous “showgirl” character.

My clown burlesque troupe, Twist My Balloons, at the DNA Lounge, 2006

There is a regional trend toward clown burlesque in New York and in San Francsico. From what I have seen and read, places like Seattle, Denver, LA, Florida, and many other cities, tend more toward the “classic glamour” style of burlesque. Of course, there are always exceptions to this trend in every region, and I am only making a rough generality here.

Burlesque history:
http://www.musicals101.com/burlesque.htm
http://www.musicals101.com/burlesque2.htm

Clowning:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clown
http://sunniebunniezz.com/clowning/clowns.htm
http://www.clownschool.net/

I am sure you can find many more resources by searching online. Good luck with your search, and I hope this helps!
Betty
PS: Here are a few more of my clown burlesque photos:

From the Chair Race act at the DNA Lounge, 2006

More Chair Race with Sweet Cheeks...

And more Chair Race...

Fruit Cocktail, featuring Miss Banana Peel and the AMAZING Coconuts! 2006

More from the Clown on Rollerskates act at the Uptown in Oakland, 2008

My "showgirl clownface" after my Pastie Tricks act at the Pin It Up, Babycakes show at 111 Minna, 2009

Clown Chickens act with Sweet Cheeks at the Hubba Hubba Revue, 2006

Final reveal for Clown Chickens act... Sexy!

My clowny Big Bad Wolf character at the Too Many F&*$#! Bunnies show at the Uptown in Oakland, 2008

Another shot of the Clown on Rollerskates act...

And another...

And here's the clown looking serious...

 

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Filed under Articles: Ask the Bombshell, Burlesque, Photos and Videos

Hello hello HELLO!

My, my! It has been way too long since I posted anything here. Isn’t it always the way of things that when you have SO MUCH going on, updates just don’t happen, while when not much is going on, it is easy to update? Seems like it should be the other way around and there should be  more updates when things are crazy, but so it goes. Too much has happened since last I posted to write about it all and get you up to speed, so I will just post some fun tidbits here instead!

First up, take a look at this great video to get a behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like to attend a Bombshell Betty Pinup Workshop:

The “Luxury Edition” Pinup Workshop Tour has been going really well. The photos from the shoots at the various hotels have been amazing! I will post some of my favorite photos here soon, just as soon as I get through picking a handful out of the thousands of photos we’ve shot in the last few months. We have workshops coming up in LA, NYC, Philadelphia, San Francisco (of course), New Orleans, Houston and Seattle, plus more being added to the schedule all the time!

One of my Burlesquercise students, Amy Martin, is a brilliant cartoonist on top of all her other talents. Check out her blog and buy her books! They are genius! Amy’s business card calls her “obscenely feminist” and you’ll see why. Here is a cartoon she did after attending Burlesquercise classes.

 amycomic 
NOTE: In burlesque, unlike bellydancing, there is absolutely no problem with your ass shaking when you shake your shoulders! In fact, the more wiggle and jiggle the better, so let it all shake! Yes, really!

We produced a benefit show in July for our local (SF Bay Area) unemployed, under-employed and struggling performers, the $timulus Package Benefit Show. We were sponsored by Whole Foods, Annie’s Social Club, Sweet Petite Baking, and of course Bombshell Betty Dance, and helped raise ~$1500 to help feed our local performers! The event was such a great success that we have decided to continue running these benefit shows every 3 months or so for as long as it is necessary!

In keeping with the $timulus Package theme of the evening, all of the acts involved money, work, the economy, and food. RJ Johnson captured some really great photos from the show, and I have decided to post a few of them here for your enjoyment. You can see more photos from the show and from other shows by RJ Johnson by visiting his Facebook page and LiveJournal galleries. NOTE: I have only posted PG photos here. Enjoy!

Here I am singing with Fromagique! Bandmembers from L to R: Randy Johnson on bari sax, Patina de Copper on trumpet, Ezekiel Pseudonimo on clarinet, and Rusty 2.0 on trombone and backup vocals.

Here I am singing with Fromagique! Bandmembers from L to R: Randy Johnson on bari sax, Patina de Copper on trumpet, Ezekiel Pseudonimo on clarinet, and Rusty 2.0 on trombone and backup vocals.

 

One dress down, one to go!

One dress down, one to go!

 

Sultra Violet and Vicious Veronica Voom in "Show Me the Money!" This was Sultra Violet's "solo" debut, with 4 backup dancers.

Sultra Violet and Vicious Veronica Voom in "Show Me the Money!" This was Sultra Violet's "solo" debut, with 4 backup dancers.

 

Miss Red Velvet looking amazing in green!

Miss Red Velvet looking amazing in green!

 

This was Kiki Yeah Yeah's solo debut! Woo!

This was Kiki Yeah Yeah's solo debut! Woo!

 

Miss If-N-Whendy performed a fan dance with fans she made out of trash... very thrifty!

Miss If-N-Whendy performed a fan dance with fans she made out of trash... very thrifty!

 

Agnes O

Agnes O'God read us a naughty bedtime story...

Randy and I did a skit to "Money Makes the World Go Around"

Randy and I did a skit to "Money Makes the World Go Around"

 

These girls choreographed this at to "Come on'a My House" in the Burlesquercise Intensive series. Front row, L to R: Kiki Yeah Yeah, Sultra Violet, Vicious Veronica Voom. Back row, L to R: Loreley, ..., and Fina Fatale.

These girls choreographed this routine themselves to "Come on'a My House" in the Burlesquercise Intensive series. They created the costuming themselves after taking the costuming class!

 

Foxy Chartreuse hamming it up in one of the skits!

Foxy Chartreuse hamming it up in one of the skits!

 

Holly Highbeams as Lady Liberty!

Holly Highbeams as Lady Liberty!

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Sneak Peek: Collage Pieces for Pinup Art Show

I just received the official announcement for the “Pin It Up, Babycakes!” art show that I am participating in this February at 111 Minna. I have pasted the email below, since it is full of great information about the show. Sign up for the mailing list to receive information about pre-sales on the many fabulous works of art being shown in this event.

As promised, I am including photos in this post with some preview pictures of a couple of my pieces that will be included in this show, unveiled here for the first time ever outside of my studio! I’m only showing pictures of 2 of my pieces here, and I will have several more available for pre-sales and being shown in the event.

For more info,  about my artwork and this wonderful pin-up themed show, read my previous post.

“Shanghai Eve”

2009 by Bombshell Betty
Photograph, watercolor, fabrics and paper on wood.


Shanghai Eve – Full Image

“Nature Calls for the Glamourpuss”

2008 by Bombshell Betty
Photograph, glitter, sequins, potting soil, silk leaves, living pathos cutting, glass, plastic and watercolor on paper and wood.


Nature Calls for the Glamourpuss – Full Image


Nature Calls for the Glamourpuss – Detail


Nature Calls for the Glamourpuss – Photo detail
 

From: Alice Stribling
Subject: Pin it up, Babycakes: Fishnets, Tarts and the Art of the modern tease
Date: Wed, 14 Jan 2009 13:10:31 -0500

Hello art lovers-

Pin it up, Babycakes is almost here!  I have been co-curating this project with artist Jessica Whiteside for over a year and I am excited to officially introduce it to you.

This exhibition features art inspired by pinups that span many genres: including hot rod, cheesecake, and faux advertisements. It also has modern burlesque influences, including a nod to the original ladies of burlesque in a film reel that will play on opening night.

Opening night will have something for everyone:

• Outstanding art and photography by some of the most talented artists working
  within this genre

• Red hot merchandise for you or your Valentine’s Day sweetie which will turn any lovely lady
  into an instant pinup star

• Burlesque performances complete with fashion show by our sponsor Dollhouse Bettie Lingerie
Thee Merry Widows will rock out with their boobage out at midnight

Mark your calendars for the party that you don’t want to miss:

Pin it up, Babycakes opening night
February 5th, 2009  /  6pm-late*
111 Minna Gallery, San Francisco
*Please note that we will start charging $5 at the door at 9pm for the performances

To find out more specifics about the show and opening night event, please visit the show website: 
   
http://pinitupbabycakes.com/

How pinup has influenced me as an artist:

I grew up with a warped idea that curvy ladies were not sexy or desirable, because most of what I saw in fashion magazines did not represent my shape in many ways.  So in my mind, to be sexy, a woman had to be very thin. Discovering and studying the genre of vintage pinup has made me see that this belief is not necessarily true.  These pinup ladies of the 1940s-60s had hips! And a bustline! And they were deliciously sexy and appealing.

These images can be many things to many different people: demure or erotic, free or fun, empowering, cute, or perhaps raunchy and a turn-off. That’s ok and that’s why they are interesting to me. It is certainly not for everyone.

For collectors:

We will be sending out an email with presale information about two weeks before the show opens to give all of you, my lovely fans, a chance to have first pick of the art that I have produced for the show. We expect collectors to jump quickly, so please don’t delay in purchasing if you see something that you like.


Thank you-
Alice Stribling

Add event in Facebook:  http://tinyurl.com/9kcjyb
Add event in MySpace:   http://tinyurl.com/8onzm9
Add event to your Google Calendar:

  

 

 

 

 

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G-Rated Burlesque: Keeping It Clean for the All Ages Crowd

I just got home from Florida last night, where I was in Orlando to teach a Burlesquercise Intensive and a Pinup Workshop. During the burlesque intensive, some of the ladies told me that they really want to get out and perform burlesque and get a burlesque scene going in their area, but because all the tourism in the area is based on Disney World attractions, there are no adult-only venues. Apparently all the 21 and up bars quickly start serving food so that they can be all-ages venues, because everyone brings their kids to Orlando.

I was incredulous. “You mean there are NO small bars or theaters that you could use for shows? Nothing???” Apparently so. Well, we can’t let Disney keep us down! So I decided to focus on this issue for this blog entry:

“G-Rated Burlesque” may seem like an oxymoron to some people, but I actually recommend that all burlesquers, in any area, create a wide variety of acts ranging from G-Rated to PG-13 and even up to Rated-R material if they feel like getting racy (or even X-rated if they live in NYC). This is an important thing to do so that you will be ready to accept bookings in a wide variety of venues and situations, including those top-dollar corporate events.

So how can you keep it fun and sexy while not offending Mickey Mouse and the Disney gang? Here are a few ideas:

Strip without getting naked. Take your time sensually removing your jacket, your gloves, a hat… Take off one dress to reveal another (full coverage) dress beneath or double up on gloves, bras, stockings, and remove one layer of each… Take off your clothes behind or inside of a large prop, without ever actually revealing your scandlous flesh… I perform a version of my X-mas Stocking act (video below) this way, without ever showing pasties! Now that’s leaving them wanting more!

These are a few ways that you can allude to striptease without actually crossing the line into adult material. For inspiration, watch old song and dance videos! They were masters of this technique. Here are a few of my favorite all-ages-appropriate stripteases:

– “Take Back Your Mink” from Guys and Dolls. Striptease with a story line. I love this act.

– Cyd Charisse in Party Girl: Note the skirt removal and how she removes the scarf over her bodice! Striptease, but still acceptable for all-ages. Also note the bumps and grinds! Burlesque “bump and grind” moves were very popular in dance movies from the 1940’s and 1950’s.

Draw on Classic Burlesque Gimmicks. One great technique is to make reference to classic burlesque through its most iconic techniques and images, while avoiding the striptease. You can perform a fan dance, a shadow dance, and tassel twirling without actually getting naked or even taking off any clothing! Wear a nude leotard embellished with rhinestones or a sexy dress for your fan dance. Do a real or suggested striptease or a naughty pantomime behind a backlit screen for a shadow dance, and no one sees any skin at all! Put tassels on the outside of your gown or on top of your leotard and you can twirl to your hearts content without actually going down to pasties.

– Here is Sally Rand performing a fan dance. She often wore nude body stockings behind her fans. Note how she pulls the fans away while behind a screen.

– Here’s another example with Cyd Charisse. I don’t actually like the look of this nude outfit with tassels, but it demonstrates how it can be done.

Use innuendos. Another great way to keep it clean is to skip striptease altogether, but lay the innuendos on thick. This was a common way to make G-Rated material fun for adults in the 1920’s through 1950’s and can add to the “classic” feel of your performance. Here’s a great example, also from Guys and Dolls:

These are all great ways to keep it sassy and risque without crossing the line into depraved displays of nudity that will shock our good American parents. So long as there is no nudity, what can they say? I mean, if Britney Spears could grind and spin on a stripper pole in front of her concert audiences that included 8 year old girls, what’s wrong with a bit of saucy glove removal?

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Filed under Articles: Breaking into the Bump and Grind, Articles: The Entrepreneurial Performer, Burlesque, Photos and Videos, Travel and Adventure

Fromagique is now online!

My band, Fromagique, is now on Myspace! Check out two video clips from our first show and friend us while you’re at it. We have two shows coming up in December and we’re working on our schedule for early 2009. Send us a note through the Myspace page or my website if you’d like to be added to the mailing list to find out about upcoming shows.

I am very, very excited about this project, and I hope to see you out at the shows!

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