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Why does Comedy and Burlesque Make the Perfect Pairing?

Kia ora fellow comedy and burlesque enthusiasts! Ever wondered why these two awesome art forms make such an unbeatable duo? This is a space I feel quite comfortable in, making an audience laugh is one of my favorite things to do onstage, but recently I was asked why. Why do comedy and burlesque blend so seamlessly?

Everything can mimic genitalia in burlesque

Let's talk about burlesque. Now, I know what you might be thinking – isn't that just fancy stripping? Well, hold onto your top hat, because burlesque is so much more than that! The word "burlesque" actually has a super interesting history. It comes from the Italian word "burla," which means a joke, a jest, or simply to take the piss. So, essentially, burlesque started as a way to poke fun at serious stuff in a playful and exaggerated way. Think of it like comedy's flamboyant cousin who's always ready to party!

Cue our next ingredient and bring in our good pal comedy. Comedy, I feel, is like the icing on the burlesque cake – it adds that extra layer of hilarity and keeps the audience grinning from ear to ear. Whether it's clever one-liners, slapstick humor, or a witty reveal, adding comedy to your burlesque act can be a unique way to tell your story or concept.

But why do Kiwi audiences go bananas for this perfect pairing? Well, here in Aotearoa, we love a good laugh, right? And what better way to tickle our funny bones than with a side of sass and sparkle? Kiwis appreciate the art of taking life with a pinch of salt and a whole lot of humor, and that's exactly what humorous burlesque serves up on a silver platter.

Plus, let's not forget the incredible performers who bring this magic to life. From dazzling costumes to jaw-dropping dance moves to razor-sharp wit, it will keep you entertained from start to finish. I believe the drag queen (and king) scene here in NZ has a unique comedic value too, be it using the lyrics to their song in a new way or adding slapstick moments, reveals, and characters on stage. There is so much connection between the art of drag and burlesque (but perhaps more on that soon)

Spread your legs - not covid

I personally love bringing a comedic approach, even to my more typically 'classical burlesque' acts. As a performer, when you hear a chuckle or a full-on snort come from the crowd, you know then and there you have made a connection with someone. My burlesque journey started with female empowerment, and by coming out on stage looking like a fierce femme fatale and then proceeding to pick my g-string out that had ridden too far up, there is an instant relatability to all the other g-string wearers in that crowd. We've all been there, right?

Breaking this character, even in the tiniest moment for comic release (and butt release), keeps any audience guessing as to what you are going to do next. Keeps them engaged, and allows me as a performer to connect past the stage, past the glamour.

Comedy and burlesque are a dynamic duo, the peanut butter and jelly of the stage, the laughter-inducing dream team. So, next time you're in the mood for some good ol' fashioned fun, grab your tickets to a burlesque show and get ready to laugh, cheer, and maybe even blush a little. Or if you want to learn more about this pairing, I do have a workshop on this very thing- here - should I bring this to your town? Feel free to drop me a line! After all, life's too short to take seriously – let's embrace the laughter and shimmy our way to happiness!

What should I write about next? - drop a comment below

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Apr 23
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

I never really thought about the connection of burly and drag... there are so many cross overs

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