Art or Bust? The Great Burlesque Debate

14 Nov


Saucy fun? Self-exploitation? Cultural critique? Banal titillation?

Time Out Live House of Thoughts and the Blue Stocking Society present
The Great Burlesque Debate

Monday December 6, doors 7pm, start 8pm
Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club, 42-44 Pollard Row, London E2 6NB
£7 (£5 adv)

A decade ago, burlesque erupted in a surprisingly popular underground revival. Many aspects of it have now entered the mainstream — watch out for the forthcoming Hollywood movie, Burlesque, starring Christina Aguilera and Cher (out Dec 17). But it remains a contentious scene, representing glamour, sisterhood, confidence and fun to some, reactionary sexual politics and artistic mediocrity to others.

ART OR BUST? brings together leading figures from London’s burlesque and cabaret scenes with very different opinions to explore some of the issues in a Question Time-style panel chaired by Time Out Cabaret Editor Ben Walters and Tricity Vogue, co-founder of female progressive cabaret company the Blue Stocking Society. The debate will be spurred on by turns from five very different performers on the contemporary scene.

With performances from:
Kitty Bang Bang
Audacity Chutzpah
Polly Cupcake
Kiki Kaboom
Spencer Maybe

And on the panel:
Marisa Carnesky, award-winning director, performer, illusionist and academic
Kitty Bang Bang, established burlesque performer
Ophelia Bitz, relapsed burlesque performer
Simon Casson, producer, Duckie
Lara Clifton, co-founder, Whoopee Club
Jo King, boss of School of Striptease and host of Tournament of Tease
Lucille Howe, burlesque performer turned novelist and journalist

Video directed by Ophelia Bitz, starring Audacity Chutzpah and Fatima


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