At VienneMilano, we believe that a woman gains an extra boost of confidence when she wears thigh high stockings - particularly when she's on stage. For years, VienneMilano has been and continues to be the hosiery of choice for burlesque dancers. In particular, we've partnered with Calamity Chang and the Thirsty Girl Productions for their shows. We are thrilled to sponsor the ninth Annual Asian Burlesque Fest.
Get to know Phoenix A'Blaze, one of the starlets of the show, in our exclusive interview. Phoenix shares her story, what it takes to become a performer, and the work involved with producing a show.
I was in a terrible place in my life when a dear friend of mine encouraged me to take a burlesque class to get me out of my funk. I finally found the courage to take a class a month later and absolutely fell in love with how burlesque made me feel. I always knew I was a confident woman, but when you are stuck in a relationship where the other person makes you feel small, you begin to doubt yourself and your existence. Burlesque helped me rediscover my confidence and pushed me to tap into the feminine energy that mainstream society teaches you to repress. Burlesque brought me out of the dark space and helped me find my light in the world again.
I started performing since 2012...gosh almost ten years! It sure doesn't feel like I've been doing this for as long as I have.
1. Burlesque is a glamorous life.
When the stage lights come on, and your costume is dripping in sparkly rhinestones, that moment is a snapshot but not the reality of all the hard work that goes on behind the scenes. You have to create your acts, rehearse for hours upon hours, create your costumes, put rhinestones on your costumes, rehearse with your costumes, promote yourself on social media, attend local shows to support other local burlesque producers/artists, etc. If you're able to afford to be a traveling showgirl, the travel can get expensive. If you're lucky enough to be a headliner, some of the travel expenses can be covered by the event producer; however, if you aren't that lucky...you will book the cheapest flight and hotel in the city you are performing in (more times than not, you book the earliest/latest flight and the hotels might be a 2-star hotel). You might not get to explore the city you are in because you are working on last-minute costume issues or running through your act at tech. A lot of time is dedicated to burlesque. All that being said, there's nothing else I would rather do!
2. Burlesque is for the young.
What I love most about burlesque is that this art makes every effort to acknowledge those that paved the way for us today. These striptease pioneers helped usher in a new era of feminist liberation. I've seen dancers of all ages in all shapes, sizes, and ages on stage - young and old can get up on the stage and perform. It's beautiful!
I enjoy the process of creating an act and sharing a story with the audience. The process can be difficult, but when you see your act come to life on stage and seeing the joy in the audience...it really is the best feeling in the world!
Something about thigh highs just screams seduction and sensuality. When I wear thigh highs, it just brings out the tigress in me - moving across the stage with grace and sensuality, but don't underestimate this feline's passion and strength.
This year will be the first live show since the pandemic for Asian Burlesque Festival! It's been so long since some of us have performed in front a live audience and also a long time since some have been to a live burlesque show. I imagine the performers and audience will be feeding off of each other's energy, so this show will be filled with lots of excitement and love!
The producers will be donating a portion of the proceeds to Red Canary Song, the only grassroots Chinese massage parlor worker coalition in the U.S.
With the increased Asian hate crimes, we must do all that we can to support non-profit organizations that help our community combat hate and bring awareness to the crimes that take place against Asians. We encourage everyone to consider supporting www.redcanarysong.net, napawf.org, and or stopaapihate.org.
I've been preparing for about 4 months, but not consistently since my day job keeps me pretty busy during the work week so most of my prepping is on the weekends.
We have two amazing evenings planned:
Thursday, 9/16/2021 at Crystal Lake Brooklyn featuring:
Friday, 9/17/2021 at City Winery featuring:
Check out: Asianburlesquefest.com for links to purchase tickets to either or both evenings! We can't wait to see you all there and we appreciate everyone's support!