The headliner for the upcoming- The Roxy Remembered February 23rd 2013 at The Beachland Ballroom & Tavern. 8:PM and TEASE in PIttsburgh PA April 6th 2013 at Cattivo, 8:PM
Let's get to know this burlesque goddess!
When did you start performing?
I started performing burlesque professionally in July 2011, so just over a year and a half ago. But I have been performing since I was 11 really. I was in a pre-professional ballet company and went to Royal Ballet School for a summer, then I studied acting at a performing arts boarding school called Interlochen Arts Academy and then went to Drama Centre London to train as a classical actor.
What do you like about burlesque?
I like that it is an art form in which I can utilize all the skills I've trained in over the years and the ability to create whatever you want and whatever inspires you. I love the cheekiness and burlesque really focuses on the truth of sexuality, which to me is not just being glamorous and sexy, but being funny and having a sense of fun and cheekiness. You can do anything with burlesque!
Where are you from?
I am originally from Akron Ohio, but "Peggy" is really from London - she was born and created from my influences and training there, so I feel as a burlesque dancer I come more from the UK scene than the US scene.
how did you find your self in burlesque?
I saw my first burlesque show when I was at drama school in a cool bar in an old underground Victorian bathhouse in London and after that I started getting more into it. I was always told at drama school that I needed to work on my sexuality and confidence instead of just being the funny one and I don't think I got there at all until I started taking burlesque classes. After I graduated I started taking classes at Burlesque Baby because I wanted to participate in the showcase. Sharon Kay, my mentor, saw me in the dress rehearsal, pulled me aside and took me under her wing. I started performing professionally from then on, my first professional show was Delicious Battle of Burlesque and I was Runner-Up.
Where have you been ?
I've performed all over the London circuit, including the Duchess Theatre on the West End with The Hurly Burly Show. I've performed throughout the UK and I've done a month and a half with The Hurly Burly Show in Johannesburg South Africa. I loved doing Hurly Burly Show, but I had to miss out on a lot of great festivals, including New Orleans Burlesque Fest, Stockholm, Paris, and Ohio - so this year it's happening for sure! I'm excited about 2013 - I've already got plans to perform at Milan Burlesque Awards, London Burlesque Festival, Wales, Paris, Pennsylvania Burlesque Festival, Great Burlesque Expo in Boston..... stay tuned to find out more!
What is the best thing you like about performing?
No matter how you feel or how exhausted you are or what is going on in your life, nothing works like Dr. Theatre. As soon as I'm onstage, I feel good, a different side of me can come out and it's the greatest rush in the world. I love getting to travel and meet new people every night and I love when people come up to me after a show and say I've inspired them or that it was their first burlesque show and it wasn't what they expected. And I would be lying if I said I didn't like the attention!
Who do you admire in the burlesque circuit?
Other performers I've met in the UK have been a great inspiration for me, I always try to surround myself with people that drive me to do better. I am obviously inspired by some of the burlesque legends, but I think we all are or else we wouldn't be doing it! I did a workshop with performers of The New Burlesque when they came to London last year and I have to say that Julie Atlas Muz is my number one inspiration and also Dirty Martini as well. Polly Rae amazes me because she created The Hurly Burly Show out of a little monthly showcase to a huge show without losing herself and her aspirations to work on new projects like Between the Sheets. I admire Laurie Hagen greatly - she is not only an amazing burlesque performer, but an incredible host, a ridiculous singer and dancer and one of the loveliest people in the world. I also have recently discovered my love of Imogen Kelly. I also really admire people like Bella Sin and Miss Oh! in South Africa who are really helping to grow their local burlesque scenes.
What are you inspirations ?
I would love to travel to Australia to perform and also would be a dream to perform at BHOF. I love burlesque and I would love to headline my own touring show like Polly Rae has done with Hurly Burly and I would like to eventually do more with film, like The Burlesque Assassins film. I want to keep performing and see where it leads to!
What are your thoughts on the historical side of burlesque?
I love the Neo-burlesque performers that are out at the moment and I think burlesque is definitely evolving and changing, but I also believe you need to know where it came from. It's the same with acting, I think if you study classical theatre and you can do the classics, you can do anything and I feel the same with burlesque. I was lucky enough to get to work on a film with Steve Coogan last year about Paul Raymond, the King of Soho who really brought burlesque to popularity in the 50's in London. The American scene is great about honouring the history of burlesque and I hope I will get a chance to go to the Burlesque Hall of Fame sometime soon. These women were really feminists of their time, they bulked what was expected of them and went traveling around the country, doing their own thing and being independent. They came up with such inventive performances and their legacies are something that should be documented and remembered. I think reading up on the history is very important, especially local history. Cleveland was a major entertainment hub back in the day and I believe had the most burlesque houses out of any other city in America at one point (besides NYC) -
Think we had at least 5!
Tell us about london and its burlesque scene?
It has become very mainstream in London - you can go out almost any day of the week and find a burlesque or cabaret show. It means there is a lot of competition, which is great because I think that is what has made it such a strong scene - all the performers push each other to do better. Costumes are a big thing in the UK and you see some incredible creations. It's great that so many people have been exposed to burlesque and there are so many different types of burlesque happening in London, not just classic showgirls, but comedy acts, musical acts, circus inspired acts, drag, performance art, everything! There are lots of big clubs and a lot of traveling to great shows throughout the UK and some really cool performers and lovely people! People to check out: Laurie Hagen, Polly Rae, Betsy Rose, Kitty Bang Bang, Rubyyy Jones, and The Folly Mixtures.
What are you looking forward to at the show?
I think it is absolutely fantastic that Ohio Burlesque Festival is honouring the rich Burlesque history in Cleveland and I really admire them for bringing awareness, not just to the burlesque revival, but also our burlesque roots. When I told my grandpa about it he said, "Oh yes, I went to the Roxy a few times!" I am so excited to see what is going on here in the Cleveland scene - it's my US debut so I am very excited!
Tells us where to find you online ?
My website is www.peggydelune.com so check it out!
I also recommend performers and enthuists join www.retrotease.net and I also have a page on Facebook and Twitter.
Can't wait for the show? get tickets now via wwwbeachlandballroom.com this show will sell out so get them while they are available. The best burlesque show in NE Ohio brings you a night of school glamour and history!