Story and photographs by Sharon Armstrong.
There is a theory that I have heard that says that women dress not for men, but for other women. If that is true, then the burlesque girls of Fleur de Tease certainly proved that they can definitely undress for other women as well, in their spectacular, glittering and teasingly provocative Holiday Show last night at One Eyed Jacks, in the French Quarter.
The secret of a good burlesque show lies with not so much what the girls actually show to their audiences, although what they got ain’t in any way bad, but what they keep hidden. The titillation(no pun intended) has to be tag-teamed with both grace and comedy, and the brilliance of Fleur de Tease is that not only are the girls all almost painfully sexy, they are incredibly funny as well.
For those who have never been to one of Fleur de Tease’s shows, the main attraction is always the sheer creativity with which the artists effortlessly walk a quivering tightrope between soft porn and strangely wholesome good humor in their performances.
The other essential ingredient for good burlesque is surprise and novelty. Joining Director/dancer Trixie Minx, fire-dancer Natasha Fiore, Lily Summers, Madame Mystere, and Bella Blue last night, flexible guest aerialist Sarah the Bobcat, sexy circusesque Oops the Clown, and the impressive whip-wielding ‘glamazon’ Madame Chartreuse (billed as 'six foot nine & worth the climb') all added their own innovations to the show.
Whether hanging from silken hammocks from the ceiling, or dancing almost naked with whirling fire, extolling the hirsute values of various questionable g-strings, or looking adorable boxing that last minute "BEEP! in a box" while sporting a fake beard, the girls never faltered or failed to keep their tongues firmly in cheek. They raised as many smiles as, well, anything else really, and for such a risqué show, it managed to remain all good, clean fun – cleanish at any rate!
As well as the dancers, the show also brought that old staple of good burlesque, stand-up comedy so bad that it actually manages to be funny. Along with the shining glitter ball on the ceiling, the candle-lighted tables and the costumed waitresses, host Chris Lane, who described himself on stage as ‘a lasagna of handsome, good cheer and ho ho ho’ and magician Magic Mike, who got more than he dreamed to wish for from a still-bearded Ms Minx, added nicely to the vintage feel of the show.
Between the beauty of the girls, their sparkling costumes, and the ever so naughty but ever so nice performances, Fleur de Tease left just enough to the imagination to amaze, stun and delight, as they filled their appreciative audience to bursting point with all kinds of seasonal good cheer. They also made one WWOZ writer suddenly wonder if she might ask Santa this year to bring her a nice set of feathery pasties, some large red fans, and the sheer skill and artistry of all the performers. Well, one lives in hope.
Further information about upcoming Fleur de Tease shows can be found at