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  WINDY CITY TIMES

Burlesque Not Bombs!
2003-04-09

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Following on the heels of their two successful and sold-out burlesque shows, Gwen Lis and Tara Vaughan Tremmel (The Sissy Butch Brothers), are bringing burlesque back to Chicago audiences at a fundraiser for their independent documentary 'Gurlesque.'

From the clumsy stripper to Anita Ridehome, from the bearded lady to Shirley Temptress, performers at the last shows entertained audiences, filling the venues with palpable pleasure. This upcoming show, 'Gurlesque Burlesque' to be held at Martyr's, 3855 N. Lincoln Ave., Saturday, April 12 at 9 p.m., will feature all new acts, including: striptease, comedy, song, drag, dance, and magic. Echoing promoters from the early part of the 20th century, organizers promise the show will be 'a lavish spectacle of sight, sound, motion and color,' that will 'intoxicate your senses with ribaldrous innuendo, salacious music and sexy gurls.' The show costs $15 and tickets are available on line at www.martyrslive.com .

This, and previous shows, helps raise money for the filmmakers', (Lis and Vaughan Tremmel), upcoming documentary on burlesque. Located in the middle of the Mojave Desert, the Exotic World Museum, its caretakers and visitors are a central focus of the 'Gurlesque' documentary. The museum, founded by former burlesque dancer Jennie Lee and run by the former 'Marilyn Monroe of burlesque,' Dixie Evans, is America's only institution solely dedicated to preserving the history of burlesque.

Over a period of several years, this documentary will focus on the performers and fans that gather each year both at the museum as well as at Tease-O-Rama. Drawing on interviews of veteran and new performers, ages 20 to 80, archival footage of burlesque and historical and sociological accounts of the striptease, the documentary will peel away both sensationalism and the bias against burlesque to tell a tale about an irreverent and powerful entertainment form.


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