The Starving Artist: Chapter 32: Burlet’s Do It!

February found me a lonely and uninspired creative person. I was grasping at straws, stuck in a rut. After 10 years of working towards something I’ve wanted to do for my whole life I was off track and unhappy. In the pursuit of success, I have said yes to so many things, that I forgot what it was I really wanted in the first place. I have been repeating my mistakes, without learning from them. I was so focused on the way things should be that I was closing myself off to the things that were. So, when I stumbled unto a tarot lady who came highly recommended, I took a chance. The misinformed think a tarot reading should be a life manual; laid out to tell your next moves. Sadly, the cards don’t have that much power. They don’t provide a definitive decision; they merely show the options we may have been overlooking. And my cards showed many things, but the biggest was acceptance of knowledge. (My interpretive reading) Plus I was promised an Ah-Ha! Moment. It’s the moment when all that knowledge clicks. Every little detail falls into place. But I knew it was up to me to find the Ah-Ha, so I’ve been doing the work and keeping my eyes peeled.

My first plan of attack was to expand my horizons. For as long as I can remember I have been a Jack-Of-All-Trades. I love learning. I love doing new things. So, when I found a 3rd generation ukulele, I took lessons. I started juggling. I’m learning to pole dance. I am working towards doing the splits. I love to craft and I love sparkles, beads and brassieres. Also, I hula hoop, belly dance, blog and doodle. But everyday I am reminded I crave life upon the wicked stage. I love the show, the glamour, the fanfare. I love Marilyn Monroe, Mae West, Motown. I love song and dance numbers. I was listening to Rusty Warren records before I possibly understand why Knockers Up! was funny. I love vintage clothing and elbow length gloves. Sequins and Steve Martin. I sing, I make funny faces and do funny voices. And what I can’t stop thinking about is how much I love everything…but where do all these converge? When does the knowledge click?

CZIN0213012Ah-Ha! Ladies and Gentlemen, they converge at Burlesque. I mean, c’mon! Feathers and fans people. This performance avenue has mandatory props. It’s a place where a ukelady like me can strum a song and swing a hip. Tell a story that’s more like a joke, with a high kicking punch line. The only limit to the show I put together are the limits of my imagination. So, I began speaking to friends far and wide, to test the waters, (notice I didn’t say Family…Momma & Papa B, I am sure we’re gonna have a long talk about reputations.) and the response has been: “So, it’s you playing a uke, twirling a hula hoop, singing a song dressed in a Martin white suit covered in sequins doing magic?!? YEAH! I’d watch that show.” Thankfully, it’s a resounding endorsement, cuz I’d watch that show too. It sounds really fun. Making the decision I signed on for Burlesque 101 @ The Toronto School of Burlesque. Which started yesterday; a Sunday, right after brunch time. A great way to start the weekend’s end. We started slow, we peeled gloves. Using teeth, tushes and tease, all we did was take off gloves. It was that easy. You asked yourself how would my character do this, and you did it. The intuitive teacher recognized right away that I was a Lolcat- the ham, the clown. She started expressing excitement at my various performance skills. So, I am going to try Burlesque, first in the class setting: To gain self-esteem and solidify my character. Then, maybe down the road I’ll go semi-pro. Who knows. It’s Burlesque where the audience is made up of straight women, couples and gay men. Pretty much everyone I know is part of one or more of those fab demographics; dare I call them: Natural Born Fan Club? And that’s not even counting the folks who’ve already volunteered to help sew costumes, build props, teach me new lessons and be my Manager, Assistant or Hairstylist. But I am nervous. I have had a bunch of big ideas, and I will admit that I haven’t followed through on all of them, so until I really do- DO it, I am not going to worry about the big picture. For now I am going to relish in the fact that I am learning how to stick all my mixed up bits and bobs together. Learning to build my show. So, I guess the next thing on this Jack’s list is Magic. If I can master the sleight of hand, that’ll really be the icing on my Burlesque cake. A cake I just know someone’s gonna spring out of!

The Starving Artist: Chapter 32: Burlet’s Do It!

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