Q & A's BARELESQUE

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Barelesque is a body positive, kinky, hot and sexy burlesque and cabaret night combining performances and auctions to fundraise for a seriously good charity; The Albert Kennedy Trust. It was born out of a tipsy conversation between Head Minx Miss Cy and Queen Tigress Honey Schnapps where they lamented the lack of variety we were seeing in shows.

We popped in to see them for a chat and to find out a little more about the fierce troupe.

Ana Morphic

How did Barelesque come about? What are you most proud of?

Honey and Tallulah went to a Boylesque show, and wanted to do something inspired by the amazingness they'd seen that night. A few favours were called in by anyone who wanted to help, and the next thing we knew we were taking our clothes off to raise money for charity onstage at the RVT. Now in our fourth year, we are very proud of the tens of thousands of pounds we have raised for the Albert Kennedy Trust, knowing the difference it will make to the lives of the disadvantaged LGBTQ youth in the UK. We are also very proud of how far we have come as performers, and helping other newbies get onto the stage who might not otherwise have a chance.

What is the most important thing for the Barelesque performers in terms of style and lifestyle?

Barelesque is a body positive event and so every individual's confidence at our show is very important to us. We aim to have everyone who attends leave the event and feel amazing about themselves no matter their size, shape, cultural background, gender or sexuality. Come to our show and feel GREAT (either in costume, full drag, your sunday best or even your birthday suit!)

Who were you in your past life? What do you see yourself wearing?

I think Ana Morphic was a punk growing up in the 80's. Then a grunge kid rocking out in the 90's. Possibly before that a Victorian who only wore black lace.

What does vintage mean for you? How does it relate to your lives?

Vintage encompasses the idea of celebrating the past and recycling these creations for the new. I am opposed to how fashion dictates our choices in clothing, and vintage seems to be a way of reclaiming our individuality back from the mainstream media.

Tell us about your next show? What can we expect and what are you looking forward to?

Our next show is Barelesque 9 - Bad to the Bone(r). It's on November 18th and we hope to bring you all things naughty, devilish, rude - characters from films/books/series, and acts based around all things BAD. Expect loud cheers, cracking acts, over 16 performances in one night AND full frontal nudity!

What style advice would you give to someone in need of some?

Never look to magazines to find your identity - there's nothing in there but a bunch of advertisers trying hard to turn us all into Sheeple.

Name three style icons of the past that you think represent your ideal?

Blondie, Grace Jones, David Bowie.

Honey Schnapps

How did Barelesque come about? What are you most proud of?

Tallulah and I were discussing the lack of variety we saw at some shows so decided to do it ourselves. Ana Morphic joined us soon after and since then we've gone from strength to strength. I'm proud of how we improve with each show and fiercely proud of our inclusivity and diversity.

What is the most important thing for the Barelesque performers in terms of style and lifestyle?

Be authentic, fearless and enjoy.

Who were you in your past life? What do you see yourself wearing?

An 18th century dandy in layers of frills, gold embroidered waistcoats and a big powdered and perfumed wig. A little black heart on the cheekbone. He died in a duel and left a fabulous corpse.

What does vintage mean for you? How does it relate to your lives?

I've always loved getting inspiration from the past and mix matching it with other ideas. If you have a 50's circle dress it doesn't mean that everything else has to be 50's - throw in some gritty punk or shameless glam rock glitter. Be playful. Vintage contributes to individuality and feels more personal.

Tell us about your next show? What can we expect and what are you looking forward to?

Barelesque 9: Bad to the Bone(r) will be at the RVT on November 18th. Expect filthy gorgeous queer cabaret performances from the boundary pushing cabaret underworld. There's also an auction packed with lingerie, clothing and wicked experiences. All proceeds go to the Albert Kennedy Trust.

What style advice would you give to someone in need of some?

Take risks, be yourself and when you find that personal style that makes you feel like you can rule the world work it like a boss.

Name three style icons of the past that you think represent your ideal?

Cher, Brigitte Bardot and Prince