If you are looking for a good strip tease and not just a strip, check out the newest in Miami entertainment: Shameless Burlesque.
Since 2008, the troupe: HollyPeño, Morgan La Rue, Audrey Rose Lautrec, and Aurora Natrix, have graced various Miami hotspots with performances that redefine the art of the striptease. Spearheaded by HollyPeño, 35, a Chicago native, the group seeks to combine old Hollywood glamour with a modern, sex kitten vamp twist. Reminiscent of the 1950s, Shameless Burlesque combines humor, fetish and striptease as adult entertainment.
Capitalizing on the burlesque revival sweeping the country by performers such as Dita Von Teese and Michelle L’Amour, HollyPeño prefers to look to the past for inspiration during her performances. “We mix old and new music – old bump and grind jazz along with rock and roll. I’m the Mae West of the group, that’s my attitude,” she laughs, “We are about the strip teases, not the stripping.”
The girls agree that vintage sex appeal is key to their performances, and they deliver on the promise by recreating that era through hair, makeup, music and of course, the performance. “My style is glamour with gowns and full makeup. I go for the classic, burlesque look just like Gypsy Rose Lee,” explains Natrix, 28.
At a recent Vagabond nightclub performance, the girls took to the stage as the Brian Setzer Orchestra’s “Jump, Jive and Wail” tune blared. Peño, La Rue, Lautrec, and Natrix, took their cues by the stage, and dressed as naughty school girls, they shimmied, twirled and stripped down to pasties.
The crowd roared and cheered as Shameless Burlesque gyrated to the music, acting out mini skits of school girl mischief and false modesty. Throughout the act, the crowd shoved toward the stage, trying to get a closer look.
“I just love my girls,” excitedly shouted Peño when Lautrec finished her Catholic school girl set. “The point here is to give people a fantasy, and to give them something to remember and talk about later,” said Peño. Burlesque dancer Natrix agrees, “You have to be glamorous, titillating and intelligent; but also bawdy and sexy.”
American burlesque, which took form as a knee jerk reaction to the strict Victorian mores of the late 19th century, truly became main stream during the late 40s and 50s through performers such as Gypsy Rose Lee and Lily St. Cyr. These performances emphasized the “tease,” and often used Vaudeville-esque humor and elaborate props. Unfortunately, burlesque soon took a back seat in the 60s after the emergence of full strip clubs and Playboy magazine.
Yet, the current revival of burlesque can be attributed in part to the “less is more” flirtatious presentation offered by modern burlesque. As Peño states, “Shameless Burlesque offers something different, a night of total escapism.”
As their act concludes, it is evident Peño loves what she does, “I hunger for the attention. There isn’t anything like this anywhere.” The crowd quickly gathers around and with a wink she says,“Hang on a second, I need to fix my beaver cleavage.”
Even fantasies have their snags.
And so concludes a risqué evening with Shameless Burlesque.
To book a gig with the Shameless Girls, contact Nicole Resnick at 786/252-8995. For a closer look at Shameless Burlesque, visit their website, www.ShamelessBurlesque.com or visit them online at www.myspace.com/shamelessburlesque.