While living it up on the Welsh Mountains we watched an interesting DVD detailing the rise of burlesque and giving info about the original stars from old. This made me think about which perfomers of bygone years I have found inspirational. So here's my top three burly queens from the golden age:
During the 1940’s Gypsy Rose Lee was an innovator in her field taking the art form to a whole new level by emphasizing the ‘tease’ in striptease and using a casual strip style, compared to the herky-jerky styles of most burlesque strippers. She also brought a sharp sense of humour into her act as well, becoming as equally famous for her wit as her strip. Gypsy Rose Lee was also a writer and penned the mystery thriller ‘The G String Murders’ later turned into the 1947 film ‘The Lady of Burlesque’.
I borrowed the film 'Gypsy' a film about Gypsy Rose Lee's life from Scarlet as I'm ashamed to admit, I never seen it! I can't wait to watch it!
Dixie Evans was hailed as burlesques answer to Marilyn Monroe. Although
Originally starting out in silent films Sally Rand went on to become a dancer when talkies were introduced. She became infamous for popularising the fan dance which has been reproduced and copied ever since. The elegant fan dance involved Rand appearing on stage sparsely dressed or apparently naked but hidden between two enormous feather fans which she then proceeded to swirl and move lithely about her giving the audience a glimpse of leg here and a flash of shoulder there!