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Friday, June 27, 2008

Burlesque Bringing Fun Back into Life

BURLESQUE vancouver
Melody Mangler came to Vancouver with dreams of a career in theater, but she soon discovered her audience got more of a rise out of burlesque theater.

“I really like the freedom and the do-it-yourself nature of burlesque,” explained Mangler.
“You can create a spectacle. It’s fun and people really react to it.”

“In theatre, you are making people cry and think about their lives. Burlesque makes them think about their lives in a more fun way.”

Soon to turn 26, Mangler has been making her name on the burlesque scene for the last four years, teaching classes and performing with the Screaming Chickens, a not-for-profit society based in Vancouver that celebrates, advocates and educates about burlesque.

Mangler said she is the only full-time burlesquer in Vancouver and even in Western Canada, but said that anyone with a love for it can get involved.

Mangler said she started by going to shows and volunteering to help out. After networking and volunteering, she and her future-husband created a game show that caught the attention of Much Music.

Currently, she teaches women how to perform burlesque as well as choreographing dance numbers and rewriting songs. One of her favorites is a parody of “diamonds are a girls best friends” that she has donned “hymens are a girl’s best friend.”

She cautions people not to think that burlesque is just a striptease.

“Burlesque is many different things. It’s an artistic competition involving dirty parodies, music and costumes,” she said.

“We run variety shows and start with a funny opening act, then we parody funny songs with scantily clad girls doing an awesome striptease act.”

Mangler said that most people vying to make a career in burlesque teach and make elaborate costumes.

“Unless you’re Dita Von Teese, it’s all about what you can do on the side,” she said.
by Krista Martin

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