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Samba meets Burlesque

Updated: Feb 10, 2022

Anthropophagia – cultural cannibalism as an art form.

I love the art of Samba: the connection to self, the promise of bringing out something bigger than, older than, wiser than, more fun than my usual day-to-day… and lets not forget the sequins. I can converse till the cows come home on my love for it…

My friend Mae de la Rue loves Burlesque. For her the art of getting your kip-off to music in front of hundreds of people and how to do it, more fun, bigger, and better and more creatively, gets her juices flowing… and lets not forget the sequins!

Mae came to me a few years ago and suggested we work together on an Elvis meets showgirl act… a reverse strip (is that what it’s called?) where Elvis becomes a showgirl… My interest peaked, I was immediately in. We loved shopping together for costumes and props and we began this fusion of samba meets burlesque.

But when I say began, I really mean we continued an ongoing conversation that’s been around, at least, since early last century. I’m really influenced by Lennie Dale of Dzi Croquettes (who was actually a mentor and inspiration for Liza Minelli and other hollywood superstars of the time). Mae is really influenced by Amalia Aguilar one of the superstars leading a similar cuban conversation.

The Brazilian Tropicalia movement (what Lennie was a part of) encouraged anthropophagia, cultural cannibalism… sharing, fusing, merging. Carmen Miranda’s kitch and campy aesthetic best represents this global influence.

So in today’s workshop, lets play a bit with that space, where we too “cannibalise”, and work with both genres and whatever else comes along. Mae will lead Burlesque fundamentals. I’ll introduce Samba and together lets create something wonderful.

Today’s song for my workshop is one of my fav’s – Chico Buarque – O Grande Amor… a song about thinking it was the love of your life, but he was just lying (to get you into bed)… So bring your best jilted lover look to the word Mentira (Mih chie ra – Lier) :-). Its going to be big, fun, and probably cathartic

See you soon, SambaSooz

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