Burlesque is glamorous, gritty and glittery. It’s all about the art of the tease and capturing an audience’s hearts and hormones. But beyond being tantalizing and titillating, it is an art form created to satirize mores and stereotypes of the time. While it dates back to the late 1800s, it is currently a staple of the Los Angeles arts scene. Burlesque’s most mainstream stars Dita Von Teese and The Pussycat Dolls started here, eventually bringing their version of the art to a global audience in the 2000s. But that is only one dimension of what the burlesque scene in Los Angeles truly is.
Los Angeles and New York City were the centers of the neo-burlesque revival of the ’90s and 2000s. This laid a foundation for a burgeoning burlesque scene taking root in dozens of cities across North America. The community has grown exponentially in the last decade and has become more inclusive of different body shapes, ethnicities, gender expressions, and styles. The City of Angels now has something for everybody. As a traveling burlesque artist and teacher for the last 10 years, I’m a part of this evolution and your trusty guide into this bizarre and shiny world of tease.