What ever happened to the good ole days? The days of corsets, petticoats, gloves, hats and… sequined nipple tassels? I’m talking about burlesque, the sexy variety shows that were popular in the United States from the 1860s to 1950s. A choreographed performance that combines striptease, comedy, costumes and showmanship, burlesque is the ultimate entertainment that has added to New Orleans’ rich culture of costumes and a great time. Neo-burlesque is the revival of American burlesque that blends the original art form with newer performance styles. Burlesque has certainly made a comeback because on any weekend, you’d be sure to find at least one tantalizing show to attend. Not only can you go see a variety of different burlesque in New Orleans, you can even take classes yourself and learn the moves that go with those tassels.
Where Can I see Burlesque in New Orleans?
Irvin Mayfield’s Jazz Playhouse
300 Bourbon Street
Right on Bourbon Street in the Royal Sonseta Hotel, Irvin Mayfield’s Jazz Playhouse is one of the best jazz clubs in the city. Along with great music, their Burlesque Ballroom offers sultry entertainment Friday nights with shows starting at midnight. The venue is cozy yet swanky so call to make a reservation and come dressed to impressed. The show is free but there is a $25 drink minimum and you should definitely bring cash to tip the performers so don’t come with an empty wallet. Come to this classic venue to witness talented burlesque artists bring you back to 1960s Bourbon Street entertainment.
House of Blues
225 Decatur Street
Also located in the French Quarter, the House of Blues is another classic venue known for great live music and entertainment. Since 2007, the venue has hosted monthly performances by Bustout Burlesque, an authentic 1950s-style burlesque show. The next show is November 14th at 8pm (doors at 7:30) with general admission standing room only tickets going for around $30. Order tickets online and if you’re looking to make it an all-night affair, make a reservation to have dinner before at in house restaurant, Crossroads.
Bits & Jiggles
2227 St. Claude Ave
Presented at Siberia, Bits and Jiggles is a FREE comedy and burlesque show every Monday night. Is there anything sexier than laughing? If you’re the confident, secure type that I’m sure you are, I would suggest something like this as an awesome date-night extravaganza. At the last event, famed comedian and my personal spirit animal Louis C.K. appeared. So you never know what you come happen. THAT’S the fun part.
Slow Burn Burlesque
Slow Burn Burlesque has a pretty ironic title, as this show is something that will light you up right from the beginning. With comedy and dancing, Slow Burn Burlesque is a combined act of “lassic style and glamour with rock n’ roll attitude.” They even took home “Best Group Performance” at the 2012 Southern Fried Burlesque Festival. Check out the video below if you don’t believe us. Their next show is “Showghouls” just in time for Halloween.
“Showgouls” Saturday, October 25 @ 9PM $15
907 St. Peters
Fleur de Tease
Fleur de Tease is a first class variety show that won’t disappoint, especially when magicians, fire eaters, aerialists and of course the burlesque dancers make up the core cast. Produced by Trixie Minx, sponsored by Trashy Diva and performing all over the city, you haven’t experience burlesque in New Orleans if you haven’t seen this modern twist on classic Vaudeville. Their new show, Trixie’s Jewel Box Burlesque features Fleur de Tease’s lovely dancers as they jewels they are. The show is Saturday, October 18th and Saturday, November 1st at the Little Gem Saloon with 9:30pm and 11pm shows. Call (504)319-8917 to reserve tickets, $15 for reserved table seating and $10 for general admission.
The Roux: A Spicy Brown Burlesque Show
Blu Reine via Facebook
Produced by Blue Reine, The Roux is the only burlesque and variety show in New Orleans that features a full cast of performers of color. While the next show isn’t until March 14th, 2015 at Cafe Istanbul, email [email protected] to reserve your spot in the VIP section because this is a show you won’t want to miss. Their first show on September 12th was a huge success with a line up that included classic burlesque, neo burlesque, drag, comedy and more.
Where Can I Try Burlesque in New Orleans?
New Orleans School of Burlesque
Crescent Lotus Dance Studio
3143 Calhoun Street
New Orleans School of Burlesque offers hour-long classes twice a week at Crescent Lotus Dance Studio on Tuesdays at 6:20pm and Thursdays at 7:15pm. Anyone is welcome to attend class as they are all levels. Classes are only $10 a session and no registration is required, just walk in! Come wearing form fitting fitness wear and bring a pair of heels that are less than 4 inches high. They school provides the feathers and boas to learn with but also feel free to bring your own. Every 10-12 weeks the studio puts together a student showcase which gives everyone who wants to participate an opportunity to get onstage and show what they’ve learned. Whether you’re looking for a workout, want to perform, or simply want to learn something new, burlesque is definitely something you try.
Go check out a burlesque show or take a class to learn some basic moves. Stay posted on upcoming performances by following Burlesque and Cabaret in New Orleans on Facebook.
Go out there and get some sexy back with these awesome burlesque shows throughout New Orleans. Trust that if you are looking for sexy with a dash of outrageous, there is no better city to be in.
Go ahead with your bad self.