By Sean K. Young
Saturday, September 8, 2012
One Eyed Jacks, New Orleans
After a summer hiatus, the lovelies from Fleur De Tease returned to kick off their seventh season and for the first time ever, they got dirty on a Saturday night instead of the usual Sunday. What? FDT on Saturday? Crazy, right? Since my photog and I both have day jobs, we usually catch the early Sunday night show for FDT, but as this was not a school night, what do we do?… catch the early show. It’s probably a good thing, given my fondness for adult beverages. The FDT season six was an early show, too, and I was not exactly sober… I still blame Kirk.
The inimitable Chris Lane was our host for the evening and he was revved up and raring to go. The time off only seemed to have only quickened his wit as he deftly played with the audience, which was surprisingly rowdy for an early show.
The opening act of the evening was FDT’s own creative director, Ms. Trixie Minx. Trixie was swathed in a resplendent purple gown with matching gloves beckoning us to drink as she removed said outfit. This crowd did not require much coaxing, and willingly sipped away as Trixie stripped away.
The Mystic Ponies were fully represented tonight. Ooops the Clown was back from a cross country tour this past spring and summer and delighted us with her playful parrot dance that I first saw back at Zoolesque and still love. Niki Frisky and Sarah the Bobcat spun hula hoops around every inch of their bodies and then later performed one of their awe-inspiring aerial acts.
One of the absolute highlights of the evening was Russell Bruner. When Russell performed at Boylesque last year, I heard nothing but rave reviews and I know at least one lady was a little smitten. Obviously born in the wrong era, Russell is the perfect image of a vaudevillian villain complete with requisite handlebar mustache. His comedic timing is impeccable and as a world class swing dancer, Russell moves with a manly grace that, judging by the reaction of the ladies in the crowd, is quite sexy.
Speaking of the boys of burl, when the curtain pulled back on Magic Mike Dardant, no one was expecting it to be Magic Mike a la Tatum Channing. Who knew Dardant could move like that? If that whole magician thing does not work out, he may have another career already lined up.
The other FDT regulars all gave us terrific routines. Natasha Fiore devilishly twirled her fire fans dangerously close to her exposed flesh. The fact that she did it blindfolded made it even more impressive. Madame Mystere was gorgeous as a corseted artist who, after revealing her perfect curves, painted a heart with her sponge pasties. And Roxie le Rouge, was well… Roxie. Always beautiful. Always graceful, as she walked out slowly in a somber black dress, slowly disrobing into an angelic vision in white performing a classic fan dance with her white feather fans.
Guest performer Amber Ray was dazzling in her lavish purple ensemble. Her sultry classic burlesque brought the house down, and her energy was infectious as she consumed the stage. Ample in all the right places, Amber knows how to move her body in ways to make the audience swoon.
With what is probably too much deliciousness for any one stage, Trixie, Roxie, and Mystere wrapped up our evening with a group number that was nothing less than divine.
All in all, a very good night and a great preview of the season to come. FDT is still as strong, creative, and entertaining as ever. I can’t wait to see what this season brings.
Until next time people, good night.
New to the burlesque scene, Sean K. Young is the managing partner of a New Orleans-based I.T. firm. He and Tonya Armbruster have recently launched the NOLA culture blog Southern Babylon.
All photos ©Tonya Armbruster and used with express permission by Burlesque Beat. Performers may use shots for promotional purposes, but please credit properly with photographer’s full name and a link to this piece in all instances.