I'd never been to a burlesque show, so it was very exciting news that I was able to watch The Burlesque Ball – The Exotic Garden this year. Turns out it's the last ever Burlesque Ball. It debuted in 2006, and every year the show presented a different theme.
With a line-up of burlesque stars from the USA, Canada and Australia, this show is here to dazzle. With its luxurious costumes and intricate props like hanging chandeliers, The Burlesque Ball is a spectacle that entertains with tassels, quivering feathers and vivid colours.
My girlfriend MC and I didn't realise that the audience were so keen to participate. The majority of the audience dressed up in lavish burlesque attire. We felt a little bit left out, but I have to say it was just amazing seeing everybody so enthusiastic to join in. Also, a quick tip: there's a best-dressed competition in the middle of the show, so it's worth giving the burlesque theme a go. There's also a lot of shouting and whistling coming from the audience. I love the atmosphere and the rapport between the stage and the audience.
First up is Lola the Vamp with a slinky oriental performance. Also on the stage are Rita Fontaine, Miss Burlesque Australia 2010 who sings "Red-headed Woman" and Imogen Kelly who performs a show-stopping flamingo dance number. Imogen Kelly later returns for a chandelier show that involves terrific aerial work.
Miss Burlesque Gold Coast Bella de Jac performs a seductive routine in red and Canadian burlesque star Melody Mangler puts on a performance as an exotic rose.
The dazzling Catherine D'Lish
Headliner Catherine D'Lish is absolutely beguiling in her beautiful blue fan number. D'Lish is sensuous and moves in a way that puts me in a trance. Her final act includes a spider web, and I'm captivated by her flexibility and breathtaking sensuality.
But Tigger, the host, steals the show with his hilarious and inappropriate jokes, relentless swearing and comical perversions.
If you don't like sex or humour, he declares, then burlesque isn't for you. And he's right – the faint-hearted should probably reconsider coming to this show. It's a glittery extravaganza of booty shaking, shimmying and stripping. Sexy music, an animated audience and nude escapades make this show a pleasure to watch. Be warned though, it's definitely a racy show.
The doors opened at 8pm, but the show didn't start until 9pm. There's a 30-minute intermission half-way through.
Catch The Burlesque Ball in Brisbane on 4 November, in Melbourne on 11 November and in Perth on 13 November. Buy your tickets here, and remember to dress up for the occasion.