Friday, June 10, 2016

Familiar Stomping Grounds: All-con and the Tarantino Show

"Audiences know what to expect, and that is all they are prepared to believe in." - Player King, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead by Tom Stoppard
As you've noticed, I have been quiet lately, both here and on the stage.  I really burned myself out in March but couldn't stop going until the end of April.  Add in some changes to my health, and I've had to readjust my overall lifestyle.  It's a work in progress.  Oh and my photo editing program died on me (which is pertinent as you will find out later).

Inspired by one of my favorite BMX riders Scotty Cranmer, I attempted to start making video for Youtube.  However, my daily life isn't that exciting, and both lab and backstage have aspects that are off limits.  So it's back to writing, which better fits my skill set and technological resources.

By Neither Noir
I did seven panels at All-con this year.  Although I enjoy talking about all of the topics, that's a lot to handle.  Thankfully, and unfortunately, Vylette La'Pairadoux and I decided to put Ladies of Power on indefinite hiatus.  There are other cosplay charity groups and panels about social issues, and both of us are more focused on burlesque anyway.  I do have a new panel idea that I would like to submit next year, but I have to make sure I don't overdue.

Despite my exhaustion, I had a great time.  Ben Dover joined Black Mariah and me for the nerdlesque panel; it was cool getting a drag perspective.  As you may have seen with an earlier post, I got lots of wonderful photos by Neither Noir, including some of my new Flannery cosplay with The Companion as Flareon (both from Pokemon).  I even got to talk skateboarding with the guys!  Unfortunately I forgot to lint roll my shirt so I have to do some editing to get rid of Flareon's tail fluff. 

Shortly after All-con was the third Quentin Tarantino tribute: Burlesque Is a Basterd.  I debuted my O-Ren Ishii act at the last tribute so I was excited to show off the revamped version.  However, I initially did not feel as well-rehearsed, but I hustled during the days leading up to the show and focused on the areas that needed work.  Then my sword broke the night before the show.  The Companion was kind enough to make a late night run for glue and my dad has since then helped me reinforce the blade, but I'm thinking I need to scrap a particular move that I don't always execute successfully anyway.

By Firebird Images
Regardless of that and my panic about being late as a result of my late work schedule (I should take show days off but it disrupts the lab a lot), this was probably my best performance as O-Ren.  I may not have gotten all the moves, but I really felt in character.  Practicing only the facial expressions has helped a lot.  I also added fishnets to the costume and realized how much they flatter my butt.  It makes a huge difference when you don't have much junk in the trunk!
By Firebird Images

The cast and crew consisted of people I'd met from different shows, which was cool.  The crowd was awesome; one guy even recognized me from All-con!  I've been thinking about what I would do if I decided to bring a new routine to the next Tarantino tribute.  Honestly I haven't seen too many his films so I don't know.  I know Gogo Yubari is the obvious answer, but I'd have to learn how to spin poi (and make a less spiky weapon) to do her properly.  It's too early, and I'm only just feeling good about O-Ren.  Perhaps it's better to focus on continuing to improve the act.  It's sort of like my History of Burlesque panel at All-con.  Every year it's always popular (okay, not so much this year due to the timing and location), and it's got good content so I keep doing it.  Old and familiar isn't necessarily bad because they might not be so for others.

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