Dear Constant Reader,
(Read about Friday here.)
On Saturday of our little adventure, we awoke bright and early and availed ourselves of the fine breakfast at the Holiday Inn Express. I’m not being sarcastic. It was the best hotel we stayed in the whole trip. And there were biscuits and sausage gravy and warm cinnamon rolls.
Before we hit the road there was a brief stop for more trash bags, some duct tape, and cold medicine, which both Scratch & Stella were needing at this point. Scratch was good enough (or delirious enough) to buy us each a roll of duct tape that fit our personalities. Can you match the duct tape to the burlesque dancer? (that’s bacon, mustaches, and leopard, just in case you can’t tell) When we were sure the pink boxes were good & sealed up, we headed off for Cleveland and the Ohio Burlesque Festival.
On the way, we stopped at McDonald’s to use the rest room (we don’t actually ever *eat* at McDonald’s). Scratch was wearing his custom bowling shirt, seen below.
On his way into the men’s room, he found himself face-to-face with a guy coming out. Said guy was wearing a T-shirt with “Jesus Christ: The Real Thing” in Coca-Cola style lettering. He looked at the name and devil image on the shirt and said with not a little malice “You think that’s funny?” I guess we’re not in Boston anymore!
Because Scratch was feeling kind, we stopped at Stella’s favorite restaurant for lunch!
Everyone was making fun of me because I got a salad at an Arby’s. I’d like to point out that it was a salad with fried chicken, bacon, and cheese in it. Their meat sandwiches were probably healthier…
We were making good time and keeping an eye out for a gas station, when, like the day before, the skies grew black and suddenly opened up. The previous day’s rain was NOTHING compared to this storm. Thunder, lightening, torrential downpour, high winds. Cars were pulling off the highway — visibility was terribly. Then *hailstones*! And the hydroplaning. And just to make it super-fun, there was a non-zero chance of running out of gas in all this.
Just as the storm abated, we pulled into a travel plaza. Whew!
But after we got back on the road it started up again for a while, though not as bad — no hail at least.
We got to our hotel in Cleveland unharmed and Brigitte drove with Scratch to drop him off at the class he was teaching at 3:30. I was awfully surprised when they both came back shortly thereafter. See, someone in charge had thought that Scratch’s class started at 3 and when he wasn’t there by 3:15, sent all his students away. He arrived at 3:25 to find the venue in the process of being shut down since classes were over for the day. So, if you wanted to take his class on contracts, sorry about that. It wasn’t his fault.
We headed out to the Beachland Ballroom for the last night of the Ohio Burlesque Festival. I’m pleased to say that despite the incredible storm, our pink boxes remained snug and dry in their trash bags. After doing a little tech rehearsal, we headed to the BBQ joint across the street for some dinner. Sadly, they had no actual BBQ at that time, but the wings were quite good.
There were a lot fewer performers than last year, which made for a much less crowded dressing room. Unfortunately, in trying to keep our pink boxes out of the way of the other performers, we managed to set up right in the path of the guys running cases from storage to the bar. C’est la vie.
The Boston Babydolls were featured performers, so not on until the end of the show. However, Scratch managed to wrangle me a spot as a solo performer to debut my Faerie Queen act. Stella & Brigitte watched the show, but I was too nervous to do anything but pace the dressing room a lot. I would have liked to have seen the show — I heard there were a lot of good performers and of course, I always like watching Scratch MC — but I needed to just focus on my act.
(Unless noted, the following performance photos are courtesy of the Ohio Burlesque Festival)
Finally, it was time for me to go on stage. I think the act went well. It was a very different style from everything that had been presented that night. I mean, I was using 16th century dance music (Celeste Giglio, if you’re curious). I honestly don’t remember the audience reaction during, but many people came up to me after to say how beautiful it was. And Brigitte & Stella said I nailed it. And they’ve seen it in *very* rough shape in rehearsal.
Photo by Cool Cleveland
This act has been a long time in development and I couldn’t have done it alone. Big thanks (in no particular order) to Aaron Macks for music consultation, Cassandra Annati for the fan fabrication, Whisper de Corvo for creating the headdress, Jeff McBride for magic coaching, Katie and her crew for cleaning up all my debris, the Ohio Burlesque Festival for taking a chance on me without a video or even a proper application, and, of course, Scratch for direction, costume design assistance, and just about everything.
Then it was time for us all to get Factory Girl-ed up for our star turn on stage.
Here we are in our adorable overalls as factory workers by day. Note the pink boxes!
And her we are after our transformation into sexy burlesque dancers at night! This is the famous “rawr” section of the number.
Then we hustled back into some costume to run out into the audience to catch the Golden Glamazon, Sydni Deveraux, burn up the stage!
After the curtain call, we repacked our pink boxes (trash bags inside as well as outside — after that rain we were going belt & braces). The others mocked me badly for twisting up the excess plastic on the top of my box into an origami rose. Hey, I’m called the Martha Stewart of Burlesque for a reason.
Then we headed out to My Friends Deli for a post-show snack (potato pancakes and apple pie!). Many of the cast & crew from the festival eventually arrived, but we were exhausted and didn’t stick around too, too late.
Tomorrow, on to Pittsburgh!