Monday, June 20, 2011

Mermaid Parade Photos

Every year Coney Island holds the Annual Mermaid Day Parade and these are my pictures (and some I snagged from the web- credited OF COURSE). Enjoy!  Feel free to scan through Flickr as well as google to see even more CRAZY photos from this magical adventure.

Here I am before leaving the house in my mermaid gear (with my swimsuit top so as not to spoil the surprise... and riding the Q train topless does not sound appealing)

My friend Molly allowing me to photograph her in the subway- I think a mermaid in the subway is hilarious.

Dottie Dynamo and Lucille Ti Amore who also marched with us

A group of French Mermaids that marched ahead of us


NYC has awsome law about women being topless... oh yeah!

Here are Molly and I during our march on the Parade Route which stretches from 21st Street to the Cyclone all the way down Surf Ave in Coney Island and down the main stretch of the boardwalk (treacherous in heels!)

These are just some more shots from the Route! I have never seen this many sea creatures outside of an aquarium.  Please, please, please google the crap out of this! 

I took this pic bc I like the tail fabric

I know you are all wondering if Mermaid's need sunscreen- this one is wearing SPF 30 so that her nipples don't fry
A short sidenote here... because of my costume I received a disgusted look from a woman covering her children's eye... so I jiggled them at her- and for the duration of the parade that was my response to any haters... which immediately made them all laugh (with the exception of the first woman) and cheer.  Bahahahaha! This is clearly an adult parade...

These are shots of Surf Ave from the Q train, which is elevated at Coney Island.  These pictures are post Mermaid Parade shots of Deno's Wonder Wheel, a landmark ride on Coney Island dating back to 1920. Deno's Wonder Wheel has only ever stopped once- during the July 13,1977 blackouts- where riders were brought down from the top by the owner, who had to hand-cranked them down. Full size replicas appear at Disney's California Adventure (why, is BEYOND me) and there is also one in Yokahama, Japan. 

These shots are the final farewell to Coney Island.  The Cyclone opened at Coney Island on June 26, 1927 and cost $0.25 to ride (now it's $10.00 with a $5.00 reride booster ticket- 2 years ago when I rode it last) it was declared a New York City Landmark in 1988 and a National Landmark in 1991.  It tops out at 60mph and is the most replicated compact wooden coaster in the world.

So, I hope all of you enjoy this fun post that has a little to do with burlesque... I am a Burlesque dancer and I was in it.. ergo it has to do with burlesque. :)

Thursday, June 16, 2011


Booked again! It's always rewarding to be booked- again- by a producer. Being booked again means that:
1. You don't completely suck.
2. They like working with you.

I always feel so blessed to have befriended the producers that I have. They are all so creative and really embrace what burlesque is about. In the last few weeks I have learned a lot about getting booked and staying booked and one of the number one things I have learned from numerous producers is that it all boils down to whether or not they like working with you and whether or not other producers that they know like working with you. Hard work and talent pay off but not as much as being a joy to do a show with. There is a great section in Jo Weldon's The Burlesque Handbook about burlesque etiquette... if you are new and haven't read it... you SHOULD! Buy it here!

She goes over basic etiquette and dealing with different issues that may arise in the world of burlesque. She also does this in a shortened format at her blog Daily Burlesque Blog by Jo Weldon.  For an example, the other day I was at a fabric shop on Broadway and mentioned that I was a dancer, the owner asked me if I knew James Habecker and Jo Boobs- I said I did know them... but they probably didn't know me (working with that many dancers over so many years- they have no idea who I am!). You see, it isn't who you know- it's who knows you! This is important! Because how somebody acknowledges knowing you speaks volumes about you. If they roll their eyes and snort when asked about you- don't expect to get booked by the producer that spoke to them, but if they smile and say, "yes, I know her, she kittened a show I was in a few months ago, she's delightful"- then you are golden!

Striving for excellence is important, but your routine is really not as important as who you are and how you are to work with, your routines can be workshopped, cleaned up, and tweaked but no one wants to try to workshopping your personality flaws. Professionalism and authenticity will get you a hell of a lot further than scheming, exhibiting diva-like behavior, and acting entitled to a spot in the limelight because you showed up. All the actively working burlesque performers/producers/kittens/go-go dancers worked very hard to get where they are and want to be treated professionally and with the respect that they have earned. If you can master that, you too will be treated with respect and professionalism... and best of all... you'll get BOOKED!

Speaking of being booked, my calendar is starting to pick up! Woot Woot!  I have Luvely Rae's One Night Stand next week, The New York School of Burlesque Showcase this weekend, I'm marching in Coney Island's Mermaid Parade, Gogo/Kitten at Parkside Lounge's Drive Thru Burlesque next month, and Appearing again at Kitty Nights in August! Whew!  

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Ok, so some of the newer performers I keep running into mention how stressful false eyelashes can be and seem to shy away from the giant eyelash variety. So I've adapted this posting from my other blog The Everyday Pinup Girl to assist and inform those who are seeking a little more guidance. I LOVE comments and thoughts from other performers. Before reading this you should be made aware that they are addictive and once you go big you can't go back!
Me in F*Bomb Burlesque's Aerosmith Show I did "Dream On"
From The Everyday Pinup Girl
I use strip lashes as they work the best for me. I've used many brands and I'm here to tell you that the two that stick out are Makeup Forever and Mattese

Makeup Forever has AMAZING eyelash glue hold-wise BUT the application can be messy and it stains clothes (I dripped some on a black costume skirt and now it looks like it came out of Monica Lewinsky's closet.)

I have two sets by Makeup Forever. #25115 are pink at the lid line and about half-way down the lash they become black with little decorative tips.

#25116- are a dark heavy black feathered lash- great for when you need to look dangerous.

I find that Makeup Forever's eyelashes are very high quality- great for multiple uses (I reuse them for MONTHS) easy to apply but not as easy to trim, especially the feather ones as cutting the inner tip dramatically changes the effect of the lashes. I would recommend just starting on the inner corner of the eye and extending beyond the lash line if need be- don't trim them at all if you can avoid it. Their eyelashes cost between $10.00 and $22.00 a set.

On to Mattese Eyelashes.

These are my favorite. They are inexpensive (between $7.00- $14.00 a set)
however not all of them come with eye lash glue. I have so many pairs of these I don't know where to begin but I will share two of my favorite lashes they make.

This set is very Marylin Monroe and I wear these for regular appearances in and around the city. They are clearly false lashes and I really love them. They provide a heavy lidded look and give that smoldering temptress her bedroom eyes.

These lashes are super fun- though can be a little uncomfortable if they are put on wrong- they are stiffer than some of the other models. I am wearing these in my pinup set on my facebook page.

I find that Mattese's lashes are a little more cost effective and last just as long (they even have VERY similar styles to Makeup Forever) for me they are easier to get as there is a Ricky's on every other corner here in New York City but you can always order them online from Ricky's (which if you don't know about Ricky's, it's a Mecca for drag queens, strippers, burlesque dancers, and rockabillys.) They carry both natural and crazy lashes... though I say, go big or go home- everyone knows that your eyelashes are not that long or full or well curled so you may as well live it up.

As far a glue goes- buy a tube of both clear and black from DUO (it's the best glue I've used.) I rarely use the black but it can be great if you are doing a jet black eye or very dark makeup near the lash line however, I suggest using the clear until you are a lash master.

How to put on false lashes:
Before you begin put your eye makeup on. It's easier to adjust eye makeup once the lashes are on rather than attempting to create a look from scratch- that's my opinion everyone is different, only experimentation will help you. In fact, many sources say specifically to wait to apply your makeup until afterword- when I tried this I had trouble navigating around my extremely long lashes with my complicated makeup plan- so like I said it's really up to you what works best, this is a very personal choice.

When you pull the strip off the plastic mold remember to pull from one end (not the middle, you don't want to accidentally put a kink or break in your lashes) and smoothly peel them off their holder. Even though it is sticky you must still use glue, even if they say they are self adhesive, you must still use glue- the tacky stuff they use to stick it to the plastic WILL NOT hold it to your eye.

Put a very thin strip of glue on the part of the eyelash you are placing above (for the top and below if you are using bottom lashes as well) your lash line. Allow it to get tacky BEFORE putting it on your eye. You have to let eyelash glue cure before attaching it to your eye.

Once the glue is ready (anywhere from 30-60 seconds or so for me) start on the inner part of your lash line where you want the lashes and gently press them on (I use the handle of a makeup brush to hold it place) and follow the lash line all the way across the eye to the outer corner. Starting from the inside of the eye and moving outward gives you more control on where the lashes are situated and allows you to decide if you need to trim them and which end you should trim from. Hold it in place a minute and then if they are satisfactory do it on the other eye. Voila! Beautiful false lashes!

Don't be afraid to wear big lashes, or colorful lashes. They are fun and easy to wear and once you know the tricks can really bring an outfit to life- a femme fatale, an innocent anjenu, a doe-eyed sock hopper, or that smoldering temptress we talked about earlier.