When I got into extreme sports, I started seeing places all around me that would be a good obstacle to tackle on Rollerblades or a jump for my bicycle. I never acquired the skill to do most of my imagined stunts, but even now, I still think about how cool it’d be to ride my skateboard off a ledge. After the Dallas Burlesque Festival, I started to get the same increased level of inspiration with burlesque. I’d develop the concept for an act during work, or a song would suddenly make me want to bump and grind. A fire had been lit under me, and I was ready to continue to progress as a burlesque student.
First, I stopped making excuses for not moving up from the beginner’s class. Yes, the bus schedule was a bit inconvenient, but there was a way for me to get home without having to walk in the dark. I needed the challenge of combos and choreography– I wanted it. Next, I decided to be more proactive in continuing my stage kitten career. I made plans to audition for the Ruby Revue, and once the Clever Girl Cabaret site went live, I asked them whether they needed any for their new show.
|By JD Morgan Photography|
Since I knew I would be dressed up for the audition, I scheduled a photoshoot with my friend Jonathan Morgan afterward. I had these neon pink-and-black socks that were nixed for a potential burlesque/pin-up outfit, but I really liked them with my pink bottoms and black bra. The whole look embodied my quirkiness, which I would probably play up in a stage persona. Jon also had me do more delicate, feminine shots to compliment the fascinator I bought from Dallas Pin Up. Those were less me, but it's good to practice versatility. The shoot was fun though I learned I still have a long ways to go in being more aware of my face and body. I’ll get practice in dance class.
A few days after the auditions, I found out that I got the part of a stage kitten. To add a cherry on top, the Ruby Room studio also deemed me their Student of the Month. While I’ve been trying to not let compliments build my self-esteem, the recognition only fueled my desire to keep working on my nascent burlesque career.
|By JD Morgan Photography|
Yesterday was my one year anniversary with the Ruby Room. I’m amazed at how far I’ve progressed as a burlesque student and as a person who is working to be more confident and independent. I’m trying not to rush myself or get caught up in the idealism of a new world. There will be rejection, critics, and other unpleasant things. For now, I’ll continue to work on self-improvement outside of burlesque and do more research on issues within the community. Just as I didn’t exactly know where signing up for burlesque classes would take me, I remain open to many possibilities for the future. Doors have been opened, and I’m becoming more confident about marching straight through them.