Friday Tip

Dear Constant Reader,

Happy Friday! Last week we had a pastie-making workshop for our apprentices and it put me in the mind of this tip:

When encrusting your pasties with rhinestones, use a metallic base fabric for extra sparkle.

I made this pastie with gold lamé under all those gold rhinestones. It’s barely noticeable between the stones, but you get more *GOLD* impact than if it were a non-metallic background.

M2Like this tip? There are lots more in Miss Mina Murray’s Little Book of Better Burlesque.

These writings and other creative projects are supported by my Patrons. Thank you so much! To become a Patron, go to my Patreon page.

Published in: on 19 April 2019 at 3:04 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Friday Tip

Dear Constant Reader,

It’s a very sad day in the burlesque world. Last night, we lost one of our Legends, Satan’s Angel, The Devil’s Own Mistress, Queen of the Fire Tassels. She was a force of nature and an inspiration to many performers.

I was fortunate enough to meet her a couple of times, most notably at The Great Burlesque Expo in 2008, where she impressed everyone by twirling her fire tassels. “Tatas Flambé”, she called them. Now, she’d been told the venue didn’t allow fire, but that was Angel — she did exactly what she wanted, damn the consequences. Her energy on stage belied her age and years of hard living. I still have not seen anyone work a duster like she did.

Despite her intimidating stage presence, she was quite approachable. She spoke her mind, bluntly and completely unfiltered, and if you were smart, you listened.

Today I want to share some wise words from Mr. Scratch, from when we first learned that Angel was ill:

If you are in the world of burlesque, figure out the legend who is closest to you (I don’t mean geographically; the one who speaks to you as a performer) and reach out to them. Listen to them; learn from them.

We did not invent Burlesque. We inherited it. We cannot keep its flame alive if we do not know what that flame is.

Our Legends are a precious link to our history, and a dwindling resource. Cherish them.

Yours in sorrow,
M2

Published in: on 12 April 2019 at 3:32 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Friday Tip

Dear Constant Reader,

Happy Friday! Here’s your tip:

Consider using music from independent artists.

It can be a nice change of pace to use music from lesser-known artists, particularly local ones. You’re exposing your audience or students to something new and it’s a song probably few other burlesquers are performing to. It’s usually easier to get permission to use the song, and if you need to pay for rights, you’ll know the artists are getting more of the money than if you deal with ASCAP. Also, you may have an opportunity to cross-promote.

A few years ago we had a lot of fun performing with local musician Samantha Farrell. She sang foor one of our existing routines and Stella created an act to one her original songs. It was a great creative exchange.

For B.A.B.E.’s recent Chair Dance 201 class, I created the students’ choreography to "Voodoo You" by burlesque performer Melody Sweets. Enjoy this snippet!

M2Like this tip? There are lots more in Miss Mina Murray’s Little Book of Better Burlesque.

These writings and other creative projects are supported by my Patrons. Thank you so much! To become a Patron, go to my Patreon page.

Published in: on 5 April 2019 at 3:27 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Friday Tip

Dear Constant Reader,

Happy Friday! I’m off to Atlanta this weekend to perform in Coco Rosé’s show Evolution. I’m so excited! And now for your tip:

Leave a little looseness in your choreography for taking off costume elements.

Sometimes garments can come off on a precise beat and sometimes…. they need a little coaxing. I’m looking at you, stockings! Build in just a little extra time, so you don’t have to rush on those problematic items.

M2Like this tip? There are lots more in Miss Mina Murray’s Little Book of Better Burlesque.

These writings and other creative projects are supported by my Patrons. Thank you so much! To become a Patron, go to my Patreon page.

Published in: on 29 March 2019 at 2:49 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Friday Tip

Dear Constant Reader,

Happy Friday! This week’s tip is a follow up to last week’s:

Making your own bath products is easy and fun.

Here’s my recipe for a simple bath fizz. This makes about a quarter of a cup and it doubles well.

Base
2 Tbsp. kosher salt
2 Tbsp. Epsom salts
2 Tbsp. baking soda
1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. citric acid

Then you can customize it with dried herbs and flowers, essential oils, and even color! This is my favorite blend:
2 drops lavender essential oil
2 drops purple food coloring (optional)
1 1/2 tsp. dried lavender

Lavender is very relaxing. Experiment with invigorating citrus or romantic rose. Try mint and/or eucalyptus for when you have a cold.

Moisture will cause premature fizzing, so keep all equipment dry and store bath fizz in a tightly-sealed container.

Place the salts in a bowl, add the essential oil and food coloring and mix well. Add the baking soda and citric acid, then crumble in the herbs.

To use, add a scoop to a warm bath and enjoy the fizz!

And if you don’t want the flowers floating in the water, just use last week’s tip!

M2Like this tip? There are lots more in Miss Mina Murray’s Little Book of Better Burlesque.

These writings and other creative projects are supported by my Patrons. Thank you so much! To become a Patron, go to my Patreon page.

P.S. That is my bath tub and my vampire mini-rubber ducky. Someday I’ll make an excuse to show you the glorious mosaic that’s just out of frame.

Published in: on 22 March 2019 at 12:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Friday Tip

Dear Constant Reader,

Happy Friday! Here’s your tip!

A simple stocking can make your bath easier to clean up.

A lovely bath is a great way to relax, especially after a show or a rehearsal. It’s even better with a bath bomb, bath salts, or similar additions. Some of them contain herbs, flower petals, and other delights, which can cling to your skin and the bottom of the tub.

Just put your favorite bath bomb or the like into the toe of an old stocking and tie it up. You can loop it over the faucet or let it roam around the tub. The salts will still fizz and dissolve and spread their goodness throughout the water, but the solid stuff will stay put. You’ll get all the benefits of any botanicals without having the bits floating around.

M2Like this tip? There are lots more in Miss Mina Murray’s Little Book of Better Burlesque.

These writings and other creative projects are supported by my Patrons. Thank you so much! To become a Patron, go to my Patreon page.

Published in: on 15 March 2019 at 3:35 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Friday Tip

Dear Constant Reader,

Happy Friday! Here’s your tip!

Spring forward, fall back, and take care of your internal clock too.

If you live somewhere that changes the clocks twice a year, you’re going to lose an hour this weekend, the equivalent of traveling one time zone. It’s perfectly normal to feel slightly jet lagged and it might take a couple of days to adjust. Be aware of it and be kind to yourself.

M2Like this tip? There are lots more in Miss Mina Murray’s Little Book of Better Burlesque.

These writings and other creative projects are supported by my Patrons. Thank you so much! To become a Patron, go to my Patreon page.

Published in: on 8 March 2019 at 2:40 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Friday Tip

Dear Constant Reader,

Happy Friday! Here’s your tip! You’re not seeing things — it’s the same photo from last week. But it’s a whole new tip!

Embellish your bra clasp.

The most functional looking part of your bra is the clasp. If you’re not going to remove it and replace it, like with a ribbon tie, you should decorate it. I like to use rhinestones and make it look like a piece of jewelry. That tactile difference also makes it easier for your fingers to find it behind your back.

M2Like this tip? There are lots more in Miss Mina Murray’s Little Book of Better Burlesque.

These writings and other creative projects are supported by my Patrons. Thank you so much! To become a Patron, go to my Patreon page.

Published in: on 1 March 2019 at 2:56 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Friday Tip

Dear Constant Reader,

Happy Friday! It’s particularly happy for me as I’m out of my sickbed for the first time in about a week. Right after Valen-Tease, I was felled with a bad cough, kind of like the one I had back in November, but mercifully not as bad. It still meant I spent my birthday sick in bed, which was no fun at all. Now I’m tentatively up and around and ready to give you your tip.

Fasten your new bra on the first set of loops.

If you start on the first set, you’ll have somewhere to go as the elastic loosens up and you can keep wearing the bra for a good long time. If you have to start on one of the other sets of loops, the bra is too big for you.

M2Like this tip? There are lots more in Miss Mina Murray’s Little Book of Better Burlesque.

These writings and other creative projects are supported by my Patrons. Thank you so much! To become a Patron, go to my Patreon page.

Published in: on 22 February 2019 at 2:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Friday Tip

Dear Constant Reader,

Happy Friday! Thank you to everyone who came out for Valen-Tease last night. We had a great time and hope to be back at Thunder Road soon!

And now for your tip!

Bring slippers to your gigs.

Maybe not the marabou mules in the picture (although I love them for lounging at home), but something to keep your feet off the potentially cold and dirty dressing room floor while you’re getting ready or between acts. Yes, you could wear your show shoes, but why not give your feet a break from the heels.

I know some people who favor flip-flops, but I prefer grippy socks, like I wear in barre class. I get cold easily and the cozy socks help keep my toes warm, but don’t leave marks on my legs like taller socks might.

M2Like this tip? There are lots more in Miss Mina Murray’s Little Book of Better Burlesque.

These writings and other creative projects are supported by my Patrons. Thank you so much! To become a Patron, go to my Patreon page.

Published in: on 15 February 2019 at 3:17 pm  Leave a Comment  
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