Burlesque beauties head to Middle Earth for Hobbit week
HOBBITS, elves and other mystical creatures are not just the stuff of Peter Jackson’s films – you can also find a few on the burlesque stage this week.
A group of local performers are getting together for Bare and Back Again, a burlesque and comedy show paying homage to the works of J R R Tolkien, the films he inspired and everything Middle Earth-themed.
Burlesque performer Sadie von Scrumptious says doing the show on the week of The Hobbit premiere was the perfect chance to showcase Wellington’s vibrant burlesque scene.
“It’ll be a great way to show the world some of the burlesque talent here while everyone’s got their eye on little old Wellington,” says Sadie, who will be master of ceremonies at the show.
For Sadie, a devout Tolkien fan, it seemed only natural to put on a Middle Earth-themed show.
“The idea was so much fun it was irresistible,” says Sadie, who loves both the Lord of the Rings books and movies.
She says the Middle Earth idea show idea was initially met with skepticism – but it eventually won the burlesque community over.
“Some people thought it was a horrible idea. They said things like, ‘It’s desecrating my childhood!’, and ‘how could it possibly be sexy?!’
“But for every person that didn’t like it, there was someone that got all misty eyed at the idea. People asked me, ‘there’s going to be dancing elves, right?’”
The show will feature 13 performers, including popular burlesque teacher Miss La Belle, singer Gracie Hart and belly dancer Pip E-Lysaah.
Performers will be challenging a range of Middle Earth dwellers on stage, including elves, halflings, dwarves, orcs, spider women and a wizard.
“Basically, we’ve got one third good characters, one third bad characters and one third pure comedy,” says Sadie.
Performers will be sporting an impressive range of costumes, from silvers rhinestone studded outfits for the elves to armour for the dwarves.
Sadie says that while some still think the concept of Middle Earth burlesque show is completely bizarre, Tolkien’s works and burlesque are not so different, as they both transport the audience to another time and place.
“We want to take you to another world for the night – but every burlesque show does that, really,” she says.
“Burlesque takes you back to a more glamorous place at time. This time, we’re taking you to a glamorous place called Middle Earth.”
The show will be held at the Fringe Bar on Cuba St at 8pm on Friday November 30 and Saturday December 1. More information on ticket prices is available at www.middlearthburlesque.com.
“We’ll be at the end of the [premiere] week,” says Sadie.
“So you can come if you can’t get enough of the Hobbit, or you can come if you’re fed up and just want to blow off steam.”