Summer’s quickly approaching and school will be getting out soon but that doesn’t mean you should stop studying. This is the perfect time to get out and learn something new! Burlesque classes are available all over, year round, for a variety of skill levels and interests.
I recently took a little time to track down and question two graduates of Seattle’s Miss Indigo Blue’s Academy of Burlesque about their experiences and where their burlesque education has taken them.
Carlotta Shakin completed The Art of the Tease, How to Strip for your Lover, and Burlesque 101 just a few weeks ago and had some useful advise for anyone thinking about getting involved with burlesque. “I think everyone should take at least a class or two.” She says, “The burlesque community is so welcoming and accepting and the classes are so empowering.” Although Carlotta doesn’t have any shows scheduled for the near future she is “currently brainstorming ideas for new acts and looking to become more involved in the burlesque world.”
Angelina Allure, who completed Burlesque 101 course in 2011 and will be attending the Academy’s Fan Dancing course next month has a similar recommendation. “DO IT! There are classes that do not require a performance at the end of it, and those are a great way to get your feet wet and start the glitter obsession.” Outside of class, Angelina can be found in the upcoming show Minxes of Middle Earth, presented by Midnight Menagerie Productions, on Thursday, May 9th and Friday, May 10th.
If you would like to jump into the world of glitter and pasties yourself We’ve compiled a list of classes and schools across the country where you can develop and hone your bumping and grinding skills.
Miss Indigo Blue’s Academy of Burlesque The Seattle based Academy of Burlesque was founded in 2003 by Miss Indigo Blue (Miss Exotic World 2011 and pictured above) and offers courses in basic through intermediate burlesque arts. The Academy is the only institution of its kind in the Northwest. The courses are fun and informative, providing students with rich, experiential knowledge about burlesque history and culture.”
Rose City School of Burlesque “Portland’s First & Foremost School for Burlesque.” Founded in 2010 by Rose City burlesque favorite Zora Phoenix, the Rose City School of Burlesque has graduated over 75 individuals, with many going on to become professional burlesque performers. The next class, Assels & Tassels For All, focuses on tassel twirling and is happening on Sunday, May 12.
Kitty Victorian With a variety of courses ranging from one hour drop-in classes to six-week developmental classes, you can hone specific skills, such as Fan Dancing or Tassel Twirling, or you can work to create your first burlesque act. There are also classes offered that apply to life off stage: Learn How To Be A Pin-Up Model, How to Strip For Your Lover and Burlesque Cardio Cabaret.
Fanny Galore offers classes to anyone, over 21, “who wants to have fun, try something new, and bring out their sexy side. ” You can take everything from Beg/Int Burlesque classes and Beginning Dance FUNdamentals to classes in developing your Burlesque Performance.
Austin Academy of Burlesque Run by headmistress Coco Lectric, who helped found Austin’s burlesque darlings, The Jigglewatts Burlesque. Coco offers weekly classes that range from beginning classes for the novice to advanced training for “performers and burlesque starlets.” She even offers individual classes so you can brainstorm choreography for a new routine! Be sure to visit her website to find out about upcoming classes.
Boston Academy of Burlesque Education B.A.B.E. is the educational arm of The Boston Babydolls and offers beginner and intermediate classes for those interested in getting their feet wet on stage. Or for more experienced performers they offer their “Beyond Basic” courses are offered, such as Chair Dance and The Teasing Touch.
Playful Peacock Showgirl Academy “At the Playful Peacock, we believe there’s a bit of showgirl in all of us! Our mission is to teach burlesque and cabaret dance techniques while encouraging self-expression and body confidence. We offer a fun environment and welcome students of all levels.”
Photo of Miss Indigo Blue courtesy of Seattle Peach