Saturday, December 19, 2015

Onward and Forward....

Given that there a few weeks left in 2015 there are some things I definitely would like to leave behind. Many of those things is the negativity and wanting to surround myself with people who are going to be encouraging, uplifting and supportive of not just performing but in life as a whole.
Generally speaking, I am and have always been a positive person but I made a subconscious choice to allow others to bring me down as an individual and self doubt myself which is ultimately one of the worst feelings as an artist/performer.
  I can now fully express that I am no longer affiliated with the burlesque groups/troupes I was in the past and I am thankful for that. Many criticize me and that is okay. People do not have to like my style of burlesque and for once try to appreciate others as burlesque as I always thought...can be whatever we want it to be. It is supposed to be empowering and supportive and yes frustrating on my mind because people for whatever reasons they have had made it difficult. I still stand by my convictions; I have been not welcomed to perform in venues because of my body/appearance, been sabotaged while performing. It happens, I refuse to allow whatever negative experience I've had in the past continue into the new year in regards to growing as an artist.
  I never professed to be an amazing performer and will admit I still have room to grow but as does everyone else. Constructive criticism is giving advice and not messaging someone ridiculing her body that is putting down another individual and ruining her self esteem (or trying to).
 People still have questions about exactly what happened and all I can say is I have my reasons and do not wish to go into it publicly, per se. I will say this, I did feel I was surround by individuals who for me were toxic and the same towards others.
 Do I love performing? Yes, I do. But as stated many times there is so much more to my life than just as a performer. I do wish to spend more in my humanitarian efforts and giving to others. They make out my comments to be ageist but it is a realistic factor when especially in burlesque there is a ticking time and can do this for so long. It is a fact of life.
  Lastly, I am thankful for the continuous support and love. People who have seen me perform and have had kind words I am grateful, even if it is one person I am happy. I still plan to perform but definitely changing how I perform and which venues. Modburlesque is turning into an actual thing.
  I want women to know they do not have to be exploited for "attention" or to build a self esteem. You're not a "slut", "thot" or anything else. Women can be a powerful word if used the proper way.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

A Fashion Trend I Support

I came across the post on Refinery 29's Instagram account. The statement was focusing on NYFW (New York Fashion Week) and the lack of diversity in models during runway shows. The idea was that many top designers didn't use runway models of different ethnicities.
 So, with that model Ashley Chew came up with an idea of creating "Black Models Matter" t shirts and can be purchased on her etsy account. I support this because being mixed heritage- Native American and Ukrainian I have experienced the same as a burlesque performer and as a model.
I remember responding to a casting call in which the photographer stated he wanted Native models, I wasn't chosen because he thought I didn't "look" Native; however, the model he did choose for the shoot had dark blonde hair and blue eyes...definitely not Native, clearly the model looked Caucasian.
 I think with social media and in entertainment industry there is a set stereotype for what women should look like. I honestly believe in the burlesque community here is the same when it comes to women of ethnicity.
 I remember one time during a show I was getting ready backstage and had another performer ask to touch my hair and couldn't understand why my hair was "natural".....I get it and I experience racism in many different other areas as well. I also remember in my first troupe experience there was an attempt to market me as a "ghetto black girl" because I'm not blonde and ridiculously pale. I obviously refused because I felt that was offensive because that is to assume all African-Americans like that particular culture which is not the case. People are people, some people may like that some may not but to generalize within itself is a form of racism and prejudice.
 Naturally, I am a redhead...my natural hair colour is dark auburn. I have freckles and I tan. People assume about me a great deal. To this day, most people in the burlesque world here make assumptions about my heritage and don't even ask me what my heritage is and half the time they think I am making it up. I think to an extent acknowledging my heritage would mean closer to them, making me be something else makes others feel a sense of superiority. I'm not saying it does but many people think that way, sadly
 So yes, racism
still exists, cultural ignorance still exists. I am surprised how in this day and age how culturally ignorant people still are.
 So instead of trying to market me as this race or that race, market me as a person...a human being, you know?
 I commend Ashley and other models for speaking out about how yes, ethnic models are still over looked. Black models matter, Native models matter, Latina models matter.

 

http://www.refinery29.com/black-models-matter-instagram-nyfw-diversity


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Proud Bunhead

I have been criticized by many burlesque performers it would seem because of my ballet/dance training. Ballet takes extreme discipline and is a form of art and it is a passion of mine since the age of 6. Those who criticize probably have not been in a dance studio nor have done barre work as well do any sort of pointe work for ballet. I don't criticize about burlesque so don't criticize ballet. They are two completely different forms of dance but can be just as exciting, expressive and imaginative.
 I am a firm believer that there is more to burlesque just than flashing your boobs for attention which sadly many women are overly sexualized when it comes down to it because that is all they have to offer.
 I am very proud of my dance training and exceptionally proud to be a BalletMet student; it is not everyday get to be surrounded by so many talented artists and performers and have learned far more about being on stage than anything else. I am a huge fan of modburlesque because it focuses more on dancing and modern choreography than just being on stage and taking clothes off. I get it that is what burlesque is marketed as but the same individuals who express that is an art form are the same ones criticizing. I respect you so respect me as a performer. I also love how the burlesque performers who complain that my numbers are horrible are the ones who see nothing but just stripping as part of it, yet say it is more.
 I am a dancer and always marketed myself as one more than a burlesque performer and the ones who criticize are also the ones who are attempting to look more "dancer" in their routines.
 So for the lovely burlesque performer who messaged me the nasty message earlier...I am actually ashamed you are a human being.
 Overall, if the focus of burlesque is to empower women why is it necessary to message others and put them down to make them feel bad about themselves? That is the sign of insecurity...focus on being better people and performers than constantly worrying about what I am doing.
 So with that being said...I am a proud bunhead.
the end
.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

memento mori

One thing I learned these past few months is to let go of things, people and experiences who are negative and even though we grow as people there are still others who because their own lives are miserable they have to make it the same way for other people around them. I learned to let go of people in my life who are the "users" you know the ones who only are around you for their own benefit, as well the ones who have to put down others to make themselves feel better in life. Basically, if they loved themselves, their life and the path they're on...they wouldn't need to bring down everyone else.



For all the times that you rain on my parade
And all the clubs you get in using my name
You think you broke my heart, oh girl for goodness sake
You think I'm crying, oh my oh, well I ain't

And I didn't wanna write a song cause I didn't want anyone thinking I still care
I don't but, you still hit my phone up
And baby I be movin' on and I think you should be somethin'
I don't wanna hold back, maybe you should know that
My mama don't like you and she likes everyone
And I never like to admit that I was wrong
And I've been so caught up in my job, didn't see what's going on
And now I know, I'm better sleeping on my own

Cause if you like the way you look that much
 you should go and love yourself
And if you think that I'm still holdin' on to somethin'
You should go and love yourself

But when you told me that you hated my friends
The only problem was with you and not them
And every time you told me my opinion was wrong
And tried to make me forget where I came from

And I didn't wanna write a song cause I didn't want anyone thinking I still care
I don't but, you still hit my phone up
And baby I be movin' on and I think you should be somethin'
I don't wanna hold back, maybe you should know that
My mama don't like you and she likes everyone
And I never like to admit that I was wrong
And I've been so caught up in my job, didn't see what's going on
And now I know, I'm better sleeping on my own

Cause if you like the way you look that much
  you should go and love yourself
And if you think that I'm still holdin' on to somethin'
You should go and love yourself

For all the times that you've made me feel small
I fell in love, now I feel nothin' at all
Had never felt so low when I was vulnerable
Was I a fool to let you break down my walls?

Cause if you like the way you look that much
  you should go and love yourself
And if you think that I'm still holdin' on to somethin'
You should go and love yourself
Cause if you like the way you look that much
  you should go and love yourself
And if you think that I'm still holdin' on to somethin'
You should go and love yourself

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

modburlesque

"modburlesque": modburlesque is a form of burlesque in which the performer focuses more on choreography and modern dance as opposed to just strictly strip tease elements. It is heavy dance and choreography based in which costumes are not emphasized. Similar to gothic burlesque style of performance not traditional and considered an inversion of mainstream burlesque.


-a style of burlesque which is more suitable for me. Costumes are important yes, but the main focus should be choreography and entertainment.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

____burlesque is.....

Someone recently asked, "what is burlesque to me"? in all honesty, it is many things to me personally some good and some not so good like all things in life there are ups and downs to it. I always had an interest in burlesque mainly because at a young age we would frequently take trips to Las Vegas. I remember sneaking to watch the dancers perform and fell in love with everything then: the costumes, the dance routines, the music it was all so fascinating to me...and it still is.
  I also grew up having an appreciation for vintage style, fashion and make up so of course getting older and not dancing ballet as much figured why not try burlesque...I still get to enjoy dance but also incorporate my love for the vintage in it as well; what's there not to love, right?
 To me burlesque is a skill. It is a form of dance and a form of art. It is also more than fancy costumes or how glittery they are. I have seen burlesque performers with fabulous costumes but not great performers, I have also seen burlesque performers with simple costumes but their numbers were amazing and never seen anything like it.
 Skill, like I mentioned, it is a dance and I say this because it is being aware of movement of not just a costume but your body as well, how to move with the music and yes can have all of those things but if it isn't a presence it means nothing.
 Burlesque is also empowerment, encouraging other women not the name calling and body shame I have seen and experienced those things as well. It is finding beauty in the simplest things and enjoying those moments; it is not being afraid to ask or to learn, to make mistakes as well move on from them. It is the freedom to express yourself however you choose. It is art and to some it will endure others not so much; some will love your art and some people won't...that is life.
Even with all of that it is appreciating what an artist can bring onstage, and the same is with ballet. People will appreciate your talents and some just won't "get it".
 So maybe to an extent they are the same (roughly) just our perspective of it and how the artist chooses to make it. I don't simply want to make burlesque. I want to make art and sometimes it is taking risks. Am I afraid, yea sometimes but can't think of it that way.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

World Ballet Day

Today is World Ballet Day and I remember the very first time I saw ballet performed. I was 6 years old and my Mum took me to see Giselle; I had no idea what to expect but ever since then I fell in love with ballet and dance. I began taking lessons and even minored in dance while attending college until a car accident which happened very early my junior year. I still suffer from back, hip and shoulder issues from the accident but it hasn't deterred my love for ballet or dance in general.
  Slowly, I began to take ballet classes again and still am a ballet student. Being involved with BalletMet is one of the most amazing things and one I am very proud to be a part of. The fact have the ability to take classes with some of the most talented individuals is what helps an artist grow ( I feel).
  The same with burlesque it has its moments, yes but it can be such a positive artistic expression and in a way like ballet can have so many points of view all depending upon the artist or choreographer.  Many ask which do I consider myself more of I like to say artist because not strictly a burlesque performer nor ballet yet am a dancer...believe it or not, there are several burlesque performers with dance and or ballet backgrounds one of them Dita von Teese which is one of the many reasons I look up to her in the field of burlesque.
  For myself when performing, I really do love to incorporate ballet and modern dance into my numbers because that is who I am let's face it. I also like being unique and breaking artistic rules.
  So to all my fellow bunheads, and lovers of ballet keep dancing and as Pina Bausch once said, "dance, dance, otherwise we are all lost"

PS, this pointe shoe is from one of my favourite ballet dancers Courtney

The Liar

Since someone has made a point to relentlessly post on my blog about how I am lying about my experiences with Burlesque. Yes, I love performing and I will continue on with my projects but there are some things within the community that needs to change. People speak of empowering other women yet send these kinds of comments to other women that is not empowering.
  But at the same time it must be nice living in denial I suppose. This is the last time I am going to address these issues. I felt uncomfortable performing in that environment simple as that.
Mean who would?

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Orbit

I was asked which numbers is my favourite to perform and I responded with "Stars Dance" there is another one that is special for me to perform is "Orbit", The song was recorded by dear friends of mine and the album itself will forever have a special place in my heart. I am glad that even if I never perform again, it was one of the last numbers I performed and at one of the venues they performed in. I feel very fortunate to be surrounded and know such talented inviduals


 

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Q&A and answering some questions

I decided to answer questions from my Ask or where personally messaged to me:

Q: What happened with the Columbus Burlesque Collective?
 Well, I really don't want to go into it that much because that is a chapter that is now closed for me. It was one of those things where I thought I was with artists who supported one another, yet it turned out to be completely opposite. It has really changed how I view burlesque all together and if it is something I want to continue with. But, how it all played out putting that much time and energy into something; yes, without noticed I was removed no one even spoke to me about it until I read the comments on my blog about any issues. But, I do wish them all the best but honestly, glad that chapter is done. I don't think I will ever become involved with a troupe/group again however; I am sticking to being an full independent artist.
Q: Will you continue to perform?
Yes. When, not certain. I am in talks to perform again but I like having this break; it gave me a chance to put things in perspective plus I also returned to my studies. It is a balance, you know? I figured all this energy put into my future which is long lasting and rewarding further on down the road.
Q: What is Tinker Box?
Tinker Box Caberet was something I was thinking of for quite some time. It is more than a "troupe" the idea was the provide an image for women mainly women who are "different" than mainstream burlesque. I see it all the time where minority women aren't appreciated or taken seriously in burlesque at least where I live now. It is one of those things were you don't have to be platinum blonde, super thin I always thought burlesque was about empowering women and giving women something to feel good about. This is the very reason I became a burlesque performer because there aren't many women who look like me performing. Think it would be nice to see other performers who are Native, Asian, African-American, Biracial performing, we need a voice too.

Q: What is with the spelling?
The spelling as with the concept my Goddaughter actually spelled it that way and I thought it was one of the most precious things; also when I was thinking of the design and the "e" is flipped or an upside down "a" in reverse because it is a reverse of what we know of "mainstream" burlesque. I know so many people made fun of or criticized the spelling but goes to show what they know, right?

Q: Do you hate burlesque?
I have a love/hate relationship with burlesque. Yes, I love performing, the costuming, the choreography but there is an ugliness inside of it. I have heard many performers say, "we empower other women" yet those are the same ones who send me hate messages or tell me what a crappy performer I am. Funny thing is majority of the performer who say how terrible I am never actually seen me perform or have done anything with me all. That is what I hate about it, the fakeness and hypocrisy

Q: What is on your playlist?
What is on my playlist....I'm very eclectic so it can be Migos/Drake one minute and Marilyn Manson the next, I have been discovering a lot of music from my friends who are making new music, they are so talented and absolutely proud of them in every way.

Q: Favorite number to perform?
Stars Dance. I love the concept behind it and yes it is an occult theme to it. Probably the others are the new numbers I have been working on they're completely different and I can actually be myself and not worry about being a performer I am not. I can be dark and not have pressure to be bubble gum or a ghetto hip hop queen.

Q: Feelings about ballet?
I absolutely love ballet. I started when I was six years old. I still take lessons and I also do modern dance and bellydance. They help me with performing and always will be a ballerina, don't care what anyone says.

Q: Do you feel like you're ageist?
A: Not at all, and my comments were completely misconstrued. I never said because of a certain age a person can't perform however when you are in an industry where you're selling your sexuality or yourself as a sex symbol it isn't very long lasting and that is a fact of life. I also feel when a person is 10 to 15 years older than I am or close to 50 that says quite a bit when they are sending someone my age messages about how I look or I need to kill myself, etc. I'm like who does that? So yes, a lot of immaturity emotionally and if they perceived that as ageist then that is them.

Q: What about the comments about being better than everyone?
A: I don't think I am, reading back that comment I sort of feel like that is a comment which came from jealousy. It's like "you studied ballet, you think you're better"

Q: Are you religious?
A: I consider myself more spiritual than religious. Spirituality has always been an important part of who I am and always will be. I am an Eastern Orthodox Christian and not ashamed to admit it. I think people need some sort of belief system it teaches us about life in general and how to be, that inner peace. Think a lot of people just aren't happy with themselves they need something to blame or push the negativity on.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Je Suis Une Voleur

This is the last time I am going to speak on the subject as since many continue to make comments on my Facebook page as well my blog. Sure people are entitled to their opinions of me as a performer but it is growing tiresome with performers who are so disappointed in their own lives, making fake profiles just to comment on my blog.
  You want to call yourself a professional, a mature adult and claim that I am "ageist" because when a woman is 50 years old and has nothing else better to do than to harass a girl my age via social media as quite disheartening.
What you should focus on is your relationships and slew of performances in which you constantly brag about on social media instead of wasting that time spreading lies about me online. Yet, also forgot you don't because if you did you wouldn't be.
  So if someone defends me that automatically makes it a fake profile? Not everyone agrees with you and there are more people who support me than you realise.
And I agree with the comment in which the more you speak the more jealous you sound.
  I have moved on with my life thankfully and I have more going for myself than just Burlesque, so go spend time figuring out your own lives instead of constantly worrying about mine.
 

Monday, July 27, 2015

My Response to a few comments

I think this comment says it all for me. I also find it  humorous that people still waste their time to go out of their way to either insult me or to "prove their point" when in fact no one cares. There is more to my life than burlesque, just accept it.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Why I am no longer with the Columbus Burlesque Collective

Most people know me and the exceptionally "nice" person. Well that is going to change...drastically. I think I am so nice to people that they take advantage of it to the point where they feel they have the ability to treat however they please and I would bend over backwards for them. That time is over. Recently, I ended my connections with the Columbus Burlesque Collective. It was something that was in the making and the most recent events are the cherry on top of everything else that has happened. My "relationship" with burlesque has been a turbulent one, a relationship which has lasted just three years now. My first troupe experience the troupe leader was very emotionally and verbally abusive towards myself and other performers. The amount of harassment and verbal abuse/bullying (if you want to call it that) has been out of control for quite some time.
  So now, I am a "coward" well I am going to explain how all of a sudden I am now a "coward" according to the Columbus Burlesque Collective.
 
  One: They are blaming me for shows and the inability to get bookings at different venues other than the one monthly show. Yet,   out of the almost 40 members of the Collective, I was the only one who stepped up and produced It's Boob Thirty for the past 6 months. I wasn't even asked if I wanted to do it, it was just plopped on me by Stephanie and Michelle. I only kept doing so because at the time I thought Stephanie and Michelle were friends and people I could look up to as performers and learn more about the business. I don't profess to be better than anyone when it comes to performing; I just wanted to learn what I could from people whom I thought were good at what they did. What people didn't see was members of the Collective literally sabotaging shows, refusing to help out, commit to perform then back out last minute. Most of them would even refuse to attend or promote the show if  was producing it...out of spite. They are not mentioning the fact I put  my OWN money...maybe over $600 worth or more into making flyers, keeping the site updated, spending my OWN money to advertise for their shows, all while working 12 plus hour shifts at a hospital.  Not one single person from the Columbus Burlesque Collective offer help or support while I am putting my own time, effort and money into producing their show.
  Two: The blog, "It's Not Always Glitter". I know most of them hate me because of that blog because it does in fact expose them for the horrible people they actually are. I do not know how anyone would believe that they are the "victims" knowing and seeing proof of all their actions and comments towards not only me but others as well.
  Three: hypocrisy. The entire mission statement of the Columbus Burlesque Collective as since they are promoting support and love induced environment towards other burlesque performers. One of those is refusing to book Collective as a whole at certain venues because of what they promote and supposedly majority of their members being "banned". Well this upcoming weekend shows are being booked at the very foresaid venue and coming to find out that most of them have been in talks with the owners for quite some time.
    This past July, was the breaking point. I asking  several times "hey, we needed performers" and for almost a month one member  knew and had performers and neglected to tell me. Her  response was, "oh we were waiting to confirm " about the show.  Now, I have been producing shows WAY before burlesque you do NOT go to a venue with no performers and try to produce the show only to back out later. It's looks unprofessional. What do they do? Of course, make drama out of it.
   Any attempts of communication with most of the members of the Collective has been futile in that most of the responses are bitchy, snotty, rude and just unprofessional; honestly, I am glad to finally be rid of the Columbus Burlesque Collective. I was given advice some time ago and was advised that even if I wanted to continue performing burlesque to distance myself from the Collective and various other local performers. They are all so negative and stressful to the point where it is affecting my health is a bad way. The stress from them constantly harassing me, and my friends to the point where they no longer have social media accounts.  
  They're bitter because they are all aging and their burlesque careers are coming to an end. In fact beginning to wonder if they even had burlesque careers at all. They all have been asked not to return to most venues outside of Columbus, if anything most people and other performers complain to me about them, their egos and their unprofessionalism when dealing with shows. Why they act the way they do towards me will never understand, if anything I wish them some kind of peace in their lives. They're all angry and bitter maybe because their lives didn't turn out the way they had wished accept it deal with it.
  People want to whine about this and that going on in their lives but recently two of my very close friends have been in the hospital and a family member is terminally ill with cancer. I am focusing on those close to me and my own life and making it better as well pursuing my own dreams...I am entitled to that too. Be adults, most of these women are pushing 50 if not 50 years old. Accept responsibilities for the actions for their own lives and just deal. I honestly feel sorry for them all, but I also refuse to allow them to keep me from being positive and giving my talents to others and trying to use that to empower women.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

A New Chapter on Burlesque

Many who follow this blog are familiar with me as a burlesque performer. That is fine, but at the same moment being a "burlesque dancer" is not what defines me nor has it truly has. A few were shocked by my decision to depart from the Columbus Burlesque Collective, and honestly it was something I had foreseen for several months.
  Burlesque has its moments where it can be seen as very beautiful, glamourous and can provide someone with joy and creativity: but it is also filled with a negative side and know it has been discussed many times over. "Bullying" as many talk about happens more often than we realize in burlesque. I mean, performers are turned down from gigs because of their body size or how they look...and I am no exception to that.

  I began performing burlesque because as most my age physically ballet and modern dance becomes harder. Even though I am in my early 30s most professional ballet dancers retire by my age. Professional dance ( and I mean professional, ballet, modern, etc) can be grueling to one's body...my is no exception to this. One of my favourite films "The  Turning Point" there is a scene where an aging ballerina says, "when you're young your body is subjective, but as you get older it starts to revolt in many ways". I know that feeling.
  For me, ballet is even more difficult because I minored in dance while attending college as an undergrad. My junior year in college I was in a horrific car accident which left me with injuries to my hip, back, shoulder and knee. I still suffer from migraines from the accident as well hip/back issues. I never discuss it or talk about it because I refuse to allow things to hold me back in life; I was taught this by my parents and as my Dad would always say...push through it.
  At the time I was friendly with other burlesque performers and always frequented shows until one day I was talked into trying it out. I should have been more aware considering I have been in the performing business professionally since the age of 16 and grew up in a performing family...think I would recognize it, right?
   I was wrong....very wrong.
    Sure, it was okay when I first began performing then things started changing. I was with my troupe at the time and you know things went really bad...really quickly. I started receiving messages with threats, had costumes tampered with, and the list could go on of all the things I experienced while performing.
   I was even told by the same former troupe leader that I wouldn't be able to perform unless I wore waist cinchers while on stage because of my body. Now, I am 5'11 and I still wear junior's clothing and most women's clothes are too large for me. Granted, I am not in fantabulous shape and not going to pretend to be. But if burlesque is such an accepting environment of all body types why is it so many women are so emotionally abusive towards one another?

  I was also "forced" to change as a performer. I was told I was too much a dancer and basically wanted more "slutty" and "trashy". I remember other performers telling me, "well, you need to improve" and I am thinking, "stage presence"?, costumes? no it was too "good girl" for majority of them.
   Looking back on it all does it hurt? Yea, a little bit. It also to an extent anger me when people tell "just get over it". Healing is a process and people heal on their own terms and in their own time. They tried to take away and destroy my self esteem because of their own insecurities. I know I am not a perfect person no one is, but at the same time no one deserved that.
   I think this was the issue with the Collective. One: too many egos. I think too many people wanted to be in the "spotlight", you know too many "stars" and not enough sky. And even though many people say it isn't personal it almost always is.
  Now the question is, where do I go from here? Well, I am devoting time back into my non profit and going back to giving lectures about female body image/bullying...think have plenty of experiences now as well my animal rights activism. I want to channel my energy into more positive experiences than worry about the negativity that burlesque is.
  I think very few become really successful in burlesque and I can understand why and how now. Almost have to be strictly an independent performer and not affiliate with any troupes/groups of that nature. But women, we need to start respecting ourselves and each other a little bit better.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Performance Schedule for March


Here are the places to catch me in March for performances/appearances

March 20
It's Boob Thirty
Ace of Cups
2619 N High Street

Columbus, OH  43202



March 21
Drauma
The Bluestone
583 E  Broad St

Columbus, OH 43212



March 31
"Grandeur"

The Shadowbox Live
503 S. Front St

Columbus, OH 43215

Monday, January 26, 2015

Q & A

Whenever I have a chance I try to be as active as possible on my spring account answering questions. But, being sick has had me out for literally three weeks now; I rarely become ill yet it always seems as though it hits me like a bull dozer when it does.

 Looking on the bright side it has given me enough time to sit here and answer questions and feel free to keep them coming!



Q: Favorite season
A: I am definitely a late summer to fall girl. I love it when it is not exceptionally hot but not blistery cold either. I am definitely a California/Texas chick!

Q: Where are you from?
A: I was born in Bangkok (as well my two older sisters) due to my father's work. I grew up in San Antonio and California. I consider Texas and Bangkok home.

Q: Do you consider yourself Asian?
A: Yes and no honestly. I will always feel the connection to Bangkok and Thailand has been wonderful to me and my family always. Ethnicity wise I am Native American and Ukrainian but I can understand why my older sisters consider themselves Thai because that is really what we feel closest too especially them. So that sense do I consider myself Thai yes I do actually.

Q: What do your parents do?
A: My Dad was a college professor and novelist, prior to that he worked for the US government he retired shortly after I was born to write more and teach. My Mum was a runway model and musician. Both of my parents attended college and had amazing careers/successful in their own rights. My Mum majored in music when she attended college so we were constantly surrounded by music; my earliest memories of my family are with music, my older sister and brother are exceptional guitar players so yea music is definitely in my blood.

Q: Do you perform music yourself?
A: I have been songwriting since I was 14 under an alias and I still do. Few people have an idea what it is but it is my way of letting go of stress. I never had intentions of recording anything just mainly write but I may someday never know. But yes, I sing and write music but I always had an affinity to dance growing up.

Q: When did you start dancing?
A: I started when I was 6. My Mum took me to see Giselle (ballet) I remember looking at her and saying, "I am going to do that" and ever since been dancing.

Q: Favorite style of dance?
A: Modern and ballet. Burlesque I am meh I don't necessarily love it but don't hate it either. Maybe if I had different experience with burlesque I'd feel differently.


Q: What is with the local burlesque scene in Columbus?
A: Don't get me wrong, I think Columbus is an okay city but it is also very closed off to the outside world...almost isolated. Just not being open to a diverse style of dance or people and that is okay. I do think people are very closed off when it comes to race, culture here. People are threatened by it...it meaning anything different than "normal" white suburbia. 


Q: Will you completely give up burlesque?
A: Yes and no. We would always travel during the summer to Las Vegas so I was always in love with the Showgirls they all looked so glamourous. I love that aspect of it but these past two years I have seen so much ugliness associated with it. So it is a matter of if I want to just focus on the good parts and keep performing or not.

Q: Why do you think you have gotten so much criticism in burlesque?
A: Insecurities. I am not perfect no one is, but it is more I am not much for always revealing you can be a burlesque performer and not constantly show everyone all that you have. It's sad because I have seen and know many girls who constantly pose nude not because they genuinely feel good about themselves it is more of how much attention I can get and as a why to show confidence. To me it is more confidence when you don't have to show everything and still be comfortable anyone can pose nude or just shake their ass and take their top off but to really entertain a crowd without doing all of that is the real challenge, to me it is anyway.

Q: Have you been asked out by a celebrity?
A: Yea, I have who I prefer not to say.

Q: When did you start modeling?
A: I started actually when I was 16. I was with an agency for a while but over time I felt I was always being forced to change and be something I wasn't.

Q: Favorite color?
A: Purple

Q: When is your birthday?
A: September 26

Q: What do you think about race and burlesque?
A: It is like any other outlet. I do feel white models/performers are promoted and featured more and I know some performers think I am insecure of other performers just solely on race or culture. Actually which is not the case. But yes, there are some performers/people who feel they are "better" than me because of this and I do get "lumped" into one category. People will not even half of the time ask what my ethnicity or culture is they will automatically assume I am something else. I have had agencies and photographers try to make me "look" African-American in shoots, etc or just try to lump me as that. I had one photographer darker me significantly in a photoshoot should I would appear "black". I remember once I answered a casting call and the photographer wanted Native American models but I was rejected the model he casted was a blue eyed, dark blonde model. I feel people have really mixed up views about what is generally culture and ethnicity. So I think it transcends into the burlesque world. It is sad how people in our society still think truly is. To this day, I am quite certain there are performers I have worked with who still are unaware of my culture/ethnicity and just going off of assumptions.

Q: When are your next shows?
A: I don't have anything planned until March

Q: Your new numbers are darker than usual numbers?
A: Yes, they are. I think finding myself as a burlesque performer I kind of know where I want to be and what kind of performer I'd like to be. So yea, I can have more control over what I want to do performance wise and they have gone darker.

Q: What are your thoughts about the boycotting of Wall Street?
A: I support our LBGT community always have and always will. I know that rape culture is not something to make fun of in any society. My Mum was a rape survivor and it was one of the many things I truly learned about her after she died. My Mum was a musician and she was sexually assaulted after a gig when she was in her late teens (roughly 18-19). I can only imagine what any woman would go through in that experience and seeing how it affected my Mum it made me understand why she was how she was when I was much younger. I feel if you are posting that on your personal FB or something fine do what you want even if it is ignorant you're allowed freedom of speech but when using that to promote a business or an event I do feel that is rather distasteful and unprofessional.

Q: You have gotten slack for your feelings about the boycott?
A: Yes, I have and honestly don't care. No matter what I say or do someone will always find issue with it and that goes for anyone. I do respect that people have opinions and perhaps to them it was funny. Our society has become rather careless in that we have developed "oh, I'm like this so I can make fun of it" no not the case. I would make fun of Native or Thai culture even though those things are a huge part of me and my sisters. People are so anti social anymore and have no regards to personal boundaries. It's frightening and sad at the same time.

Q: There has been questions about you being bullied in burlesque have you?
A: I don't think it was more so "bullying" because honestly, I think when you are a grown woman 40 years and older messaging a woman my age the sort of things I received, I don't see that being a bully it is just being an asshole.