Review: The Slippery Belle, Manchester, October 2014

It was a triumphant return to Manchester for its longest standing burlesque event The Slippery Belle, in October. Having felt its absence over the previous months my heart was aching for a slice of this delicious burlesque pie and it packed a punch with naughty, funny and sparkly burlesque.

Let me start by saying this; The Slippery Belle has a place in my heart for many reasons. It was a staple of the circuit throughout my performing career, it’s filled with a fantastic audience and as a home crowd gig you always knew you were in for a good show. The audience are always noisy, fun and above all friendly but it’s not just the audience that make the Slippery Belle events a success it’s the overall atmosphere and the kind of acts that get booked.

In a time when mainstream burlesque and some of the bigger shows out there are going down the “classic showgirl” route the Slippery Belle always sticks to its guns and has delivers with the perfect balance of comedy and classic, side by side and complimenting each other beautifully. What you see and what you get it a show that has variety, substance and style and it doesn’t disappoint.

The new venue (Zoo) is perfect for the show, there is allocated seating for the more expensive tickets and your view isn’t skewed from anywhere in the room. The drinks are relatively cheap and the bar and venue staff are attentive and friendly.

A big shout out to Rock Hart – who gave the audience a little more than they bargained for; the increasingly and ever funny woman with the best name in the business – Titsalina Bumsquash and the gorgeous Ginger La Rouge who wowed the crowd with her Charleston/acrobatic antics – Bravo!

Here are a few pics from the night courtesy of Crystal Nightshade Photography and Jonathan Paul Maddock Photography – permission to share from The Slippery Belle.

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The next Slippery Belle is scheduled for next Saturday, 13th December – you can get your tickets via Skiddle.

Burlesque Weekly Round Up

Speaking with Legends: April March ‘The First Lady of Burlesque via 21st Century Burlesque

Halloween on CoochieCrunch! Via Coochie Crunch

BHOF welcomes new Board Members Jayne MacAskill and Bunny Bee via Burlesque Hall of Fame

The Top 10 Lies They Tell You About Burlesque via 21st Century Burlesque

Rhapsody in Blue: Burlesco DiVino, in photos via Burlesque Seattle Press

Your Hair of the Dog: The 2014 New York Burlesque Festival Saturday Night Spectacular via Burlesque Beat

Toronto Burlesque Festival 2014: Day 1 via Burlesque Beat

Your Hair of the Dog: The 2014 New York Burlesque Festival Teaser Party via Burlesque Beat

Facebook Real Name Policy: A Front Line Battle Report via 21st Century Burlesque

Performer Contracts – Know What You Want and When (Khandie’s Kholumn) via 21st Century Burlesque

Ello: What do we have here then?

Well it seems that the burlesque community have pretty much had enough of facebook. The straw that broke the camel’s back being the enforced real name policy that appears to be rolling out. You have to show your ID or change your name otherwise that’s it, account deleted. You should set up a page, facebook say, if this is a performer account.

There are many reasons why performers don’t want to use a page, mainly the open accessibility of it. If performing isn’t your only profession and there’s a chance colleagues, clients, your boss could see you in your under crackers on the net and conclusions can be jumped to inevitably you’ll end up in the soup. Sure you can ban people from your page, but if they’ve already seen what you don’t want them to the damage is done.

I think we’re all aware of the connotations of the biggest social media platform allowing people to have potentially bogus accounts, and their responsibility within their real name remit BUT surely there should be exceptional circumstances. Performers aren’t pretending to be something they’re not, in fact arguably they’re being their real selves.

I have had a page for years now, after FB deleted my account I thought it was the best choice. A lot of other performers have pages only but as much as you miss out on the drama, you also miss out on the community and conversation.

So when I heard about Ello I wondered why people weren’t just moving over to G+ instead. It has an established burlesque community. It doesn’t require your real name (since July 2014). So I went to my FB page and asked. Frankii Wilde replied “I think because of the whole ad free and being able to opt out of your info being shared to third parties”. Interesting I thought. I ventured over to Ello and read their manifesto. Breath of fresh air.

So I asked for an invite. I signed up and made my way around.  I LOVE IT.

Below are a few hints and tips to get you started, please remember the site is still in BETA and while you may think it’s a bit buggy, this is what testing is for:

ello 1

Upload a profile photo: In your friends feed it won’t show names so your photo is an essential so people can see who is saying what. You also have the option of uploading a cover photo, it needs to be in the dimensions of 1800 x 1013 (use free pic monkey to resize or create a collage) and people will see this when scrolling up.

ello toolbar


Ello Logo: Click this and you’ll be taken back to your friend feed.

Discover: Click on this and it’ll take you to the search page, a few people are having issues with it but if you type in a friend’s name you should be able to find them. Click the word search, type, and away you go. I have found it a lot easier finding people then looking at their friends list and adding people from there.

Invite: Click this to be taken to the page to invite your friends. Generate codes, send them out.

Settings: Click here to change your personal settings, including privacy and email notifications and if, like me, you have multiple accounts – to log out.

Hide Sidebar: The last option hides the sidebar and gives you a full screen view of your feed.

ello friend

Connecting to People: You have two choices, add someone as a friend or add them to noise, it’s a good way of grouping people (much like G+ circles but with only two options currently). The people you add won’t know which they’ve been filtered into, so no awkward moments. Click on either to see either feed.

And that, is that.

So why do I like it?

The simplicity of it makes it refreshing. No gumph, no timeline with sponsored posts, just a feed of updates from your friends, willing you to connect with them.

I love that there’s no “likes” function. If people see something they like, they’ll comment on it. Remember that? The good old days where if you saw a beautiful photo you say it rather than lazily liking it. That like button is far too easy and tempting to press.

It would benefit from a few extras, private messaging, a phone app and notification system but these are all in the pipeline. If you think something is missing, go to the Feature List section it will tell you what’s coming soon.

The success of Ello does of course depend of on people using it, posting to it, connecting to people through it. Many people will still be using their FB accounts in case they’re missing out but I think as long as everyone gives it a go it could really be the next best thing.

If you’d you’d like to add me you can find me @ivywilde and @staceystitch

So what does everyone else think? Are you on there? Loving/Hating Ello? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Burlesque Weekly Round Up

Australian Burlesque Association: Interview with Bella De Jac via 21st Century Burlesque

BHoF 2014: Sunday Night – Icons and All-Stars via 21st Century Burlesque

A Glitzy Legacy and Elephant Couture: BurlyCon Chats with Bic Carrol (Part II) via Burlesque Seattle Press

Lydia DeCarllo’s Oregon Burlesque Festival Diary via 21st Century Burlesque

Grab Your Last Chance To See Shows At London Wonderground via This Is Cabaret

Seattle Burlesque Games 2014 via Burlesque Seattle Press

Interview: Christine Manuge of Manuge Et Toi (Burlesque Costume) via 21st Century Burlesque

Review – BRIEFS: The Second Coming (London Wonderground 2014) via 21st Century Burlesque

Inside The Black Lodge: New Book Reveals The Double R Club’s Heart Of Darkness via This Is Cabaret


Burlesque Weekly Round Up

All Male, All Vaudeville, All Trash: All Hail The Second Coming Of Briefs via This Is Cabaret

Burlesque Hall of Fame Tournament of Tease: Miss Exotic World, Reigning Queen (BHoF 2014) via 21st Century Burlesque

Burlesque Hall of Fame 2014 Icons and Allstars via Burlesque Beat

Select Works from Bunny Yeager on display at BHoF via Burlesque Hall of Fame

Burlesque Backstage True Burlesque Photographs collection Jim Linderman via True Burlesque

Charlene Taylor: The Truth Behind the Tabloids via 21st Century Burlesque

Burlesque Weekly Round Up

or monthly in this case – see earlier post for reasoning!

Siobhan Atomica’s Show Me Burlesque Festival Diary (Part 2) via 21st Century Burlesque

Laura Herbert departs BHOF Board after 15+ Years of Service via Burlesque Hall of Fame

The 4th Annual Burlesque Hall of Fame Burlesque Legends Walk of Fame via Burlesque Beat

RAWR! Burlesque: MYTH via Burlesque Beat

The Best of Undressed Portland: A Burlesquer’s Guide to Rose City Strip Clubs via Burlesque Seattle Press

Ginger Valentine’s Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend Diary via 21st Century Burlesque

Fringe Review: Dixey (Where Gentlemen Are Always Immaculately Undressed) via This Is Cabaret

Russell Bruner’s Vienna Boylesque Festival Diary via 21st Century Burlesque

REVIEW: Double R Club (London Wonderground 2014) via 21st Century Burlesque

Goldie Candela’s Texas Burlesque Festival Diary (Part 1) via 21st Century Burlesque

Breathing Through Tears via Coochie Crunch

Goldie Candela’s Texas Burlesque Festival Diary (Part 2) via 21st Century Burlesque

The Boys Are Back In Town: BRIEFS Interview via This Is Cabaret

2014 Burlesque Hall of Fame Tournament of Tease: Best Group, Best Troupe, Best Boylesque via Burlesque Beat

In Pictures: Boom & Bang Go Big At The Roundhouse via This Is Cabaret

In Pictures: Boom and Bang Circus at The Roundhouse (Ft. Kitty Bang Bang) via 21st Century Burlesque

Review: The Double R Club, London Wonderground via This Is Cabaret

Review: Between the Sheets, London Wonderground via This Is Cabaret

Review: Between the Sheets (London Wonderground 2014) via 21st Century Burlesque

Burlesque Inspired by the Works of Joss Whedon via Burlesque Beat

Burlesque Hall of Fame 2014 Tournament of Tease via Burlesque Beat

Dixey: Where Gentlemen Are Always Immaculately Undressed: Work & Fun

Annnnd, I’m back. Sorry the hiatus on blog posts but the last month has been a little hectic!

I was lucky enough to work with the amazing folks over at Dixey: Where Gentlemen Are Always Immaculately Undressed, as part of their Ed Fringe show, running their twitter and facebook accounts.

Unfortunately due to other work commitments I only got to go up to Edinburgh for a long weekend at the start but I did get to hang out with the cast and crew, all of whom were super lovely (as if I would have expected anything else).

The show was a magical fairy tale but a kind of nekkid fairy tale, with fantastic performances from the cream of the boylesque crop and some gorgeous circus ladies pulling off some excellent hand balancing and amazing aerial feats. It starred Tigger! Russell Bruner, Jett adore, Bazuka Joe, Ray Gunn (The Stage Door Johnnies), Tamzen and Zoe Jones and was a Beyond the Cabaret production sponsored by Sublime Boudoir.

The show was received excellently by the press with four 4 star reviews, it was included in the Times top 5 must see cabaret list and even a top banana award from Dr Sketchy Edinburgh. Feedback from the audience was top notch and everyone lived happily ever after!

It did mean a month of late nights followed by early mornings for the day job and a constant eye of twitter and fb but it was such an honour to work alongside the best in the business, and best of all I got to sit and watch it all two nights running.

Below are some pics I took (which were used on Twitter/FB) so they’re not amazing but they were just quick snaps from my phone for the accounts.

Big love to all of the Dixey cast and crew for making me feel so welcome and putting on such a fantastic show. You’re all amazing (but you know that, right?) xx

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