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‘Our power as queer women’: Perth’s first all-queer burlesque troupe

Perth’s first all-queer burlesque collective, BurLEZque, is set to stun audiences at the Fringe World Festival.

After sell-out shows in 2019, the award-winning troupe will reveal their new act, Spellbound, as part of the festival next week.

BurLEZque has been praised for its portrayals of identity and sexuality, and showcases performers from across the LGBTIQ community.

The brand-new act focuses on themes of mythology and villains, and promises to be visually stunning as well as sexy and powerful.

“The witchy, magical theme of Spellbound is an analogy of us coming into our power as queer women,” said cast member Ava St James, according to PerthNow.

“We are all representing female mythological archetypes that are usually villainised, but we are reclaiming them.”

With other performers in the show appearing as vampires, necromancers, and devils, St James will portray the Gorgon Medusa, the Greek mythological figure with hair of snakes.

“I really identify with the metaphor of shedding your skin,” she said.

While BurLEZque originally formed primarily for female audiences, the festival appearance will make their performances accessible to a wider range of burlesque fans.

St James said she saw their key audience as being women and queer viewers, but that that this is diversifying.

“I have personally always felt that when I am doing burlesque, my audience is femme gays,” she said.

“We wanted to create a space for women who like women because there wasn’t enough of that in a performance sense.

“It is important to us to hold that space, but I am seeing as we grow a lot more diversity in our audiences, both in terms of gender and age.

“It’s so wonderful. The more people who can see things out of their comfort zone, the better.”

Several of the fabulous costumes in the show are designed by Scarlet Adams, Miss Burlesque Australia 2018.

BurLEZque: Spellbound will appear at Megamouth in Perth’s Yagan Square for seven nights from Monday 27 January to Sunday 2 February.

Tickets are available online now.

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