Slow Burn Gets Freaky

There must be something in the air or maybe it is just the unforgiving heat of the southern summer that makes the New Orleans burlesque community get a little dirtier. Freakshow to Geaux has been in high gear, Bella Blue’s Dirty Dime astonished us all and is now a monthly show at the Allways, and now Slow Burn has joined in promising freaks of nature and feats of danger with the Peepshow Freak Show.

As usual Ben Wisdom, the dirtiest mofo in the city was our host for the evening. We have several really good emcees in our town, but Ben is in a class by himself. Part revivalist preacher, part carny barker, a touch of used car salesman, all fortified with a healthy dose of whiskey–his wit as limitless as his perversion (and maybe his gullet). Ben started us off by introducing the lovely ladies of Slow Burn. We were missing several of the regular gals from the line up as they are out of town escaping the Louisiana heat, but Roxie le Rouge, Moxie Sazerac, and Ruby Rage seemed to fill the stage just fine. It always leaves me impressed when I am wowed by a number that features virtually no skin, and with no stripping involved, this trio was still damn hot.

Our first freak of the night was Pierre le Gent aka the Demon of Danger. Monsieur le Gent has quite the perilous bag of tricks, though his first, sucking a condom through his nose into his mouth was a bit more gross than dangerous. I mean, I suppose a mistimed sneeze could choke him out, but still. He followed that not by walking but jumping and then laying on broken glass.

Recently transplanted from Baltimore, Little Luna is a welcome addition to our local burly scene. Her quirky and outrageous style is packed into a delicious petite package that allowed for an unusual start to her act tonight. Dressed as what I thought was a leathe- clad Lady Gaga swilling Maker’s Mark, Luna climbed out from inside a chest. Then it dawned on me…it is a toy chest and she is a Bratz doll. Holy crap that is funny. Even funnier when she bit the head off of a Barbie…stupid Barbie.

One of the beautiful things about the New Orleans’ burlesque scene is the feeling of family shared by the performers. You will find most performers are in multiple troupes, some even produce their own show and still dance in several others. One such overachiever is Ms. Bella Blue–she is everywhere. A regular in Fleur De Tease and Slow Burn, Bella also runs the New Orleans School of Burlesque and produces the aforementioned Dirty Dime Peepshow. Tonight Bella repeated her delightfully irreverent “What Would Jesus Do” act from Dirty Dime that I saw a few weeks ago. It is always interesting to see an act evolve and Bella’s had grown hotter, though I am not sure why. Maybe it was the setting, or my frame of mind, or the fact that I had already seen it and with the shock factor removed, Bella captured all my attention. Damn, that girl is sexy.

Speaking of sexy, Roxie slinked out on stage as the sexiest of sex kittens beckoning to be stroked. Eschewing milk for champagne – naturally – Roxie twirled her tail to“Pet Me Poppa” from Guys and Dolls. Albeit her version is thankfully a bit more risque than Vivian Blaine’s, but just as fun. Ruby Rage gave us an equally fun number. It started out very serious. A demure Ruby appeared as a Geisha hosting a traditional tea service, but then surprised the audience as she disrobed revealing a black catsuit and the music switched to “Kung Fu Fighting”. She whipped out her glowing nunchucks and was fast as lightning…it was a little bit frightening. Ok, I will stop.

The freak flag flew again as contortionist Sam Aquatic entered with all her bendy weirdness. Until I see the x-rays, I still say she has no spine. Tonight she also performed some spectacular aerial stunts on a single dangling rope. Of course the rope prompted a crowd-groaning David Carradine quip from Ben.

So, I said that the New Orleans burlesque community is a family, and they are losing a sister soon. Moxie Sazerac is leaving the Big Easy for the Big Apple and this was to be her last Slow Burn performance before her move. Moxie wanted to go out with a bang and give us a good-bye performance to remember. She outdid herself.

Moxie walked out on stage to the Commadores’ “Brick House” dressed appropriately as a…brick house. I was not sure where she was going with this, but I soon realized where she was taking us. “Brick House” ascended into the sax solo from Dr. John’s “Storm Warning” and the brick walls tore away from her. When the storm settled, the music perfectly faded to the haunting “To Build a Home” by The Cinematic Orchestra and Moxie turned over her walls to reveal blue tarps instantly recognizable by any of us that lived through that bitch that tore our city apart seven years ago. But it wasn’t until she finally exposed her body suit that was marked with an X similar to the ones left on so many homes, that I got really emotional. More than half the audience was in tears. Moxie is not only beautiful, but she is smart and this piece was so thoughtful. She touched me in a way that I never thought a burlesque performance would and certainly one that I won’t forget anytime soon. Thank you Moxie. You will be missed.

I kind of felt bad for Pierre le Gent as he made his second appearance right after Moxie, but in hindsight he was the perfect act to lighten the mood. He closed out his evening hammering a 8 inch spike into his nose and relaxing on a bed of nails as a bowling ball was dropped onto a plate on his belly. If he learns how to eat fire and swallow swords, he could be a one man sideshow.

Wrapping up the night was the winner of the “Save Our Souls” burlesque contest, The Dirty Blonde! This voluptuous vixen bumped and grinded in a classic 1950’s style strip working her boa and spinning her tassels like a pro. It was easy to see why she was a fan favorite.

Slow Burn did it again. What a show.

Until next time people, good night.