Monday, December 20, 2004

7) Stranger Than Paradise

The Honeytrap Guide to London Burlesque
Billed as a “Twisted exotic romp of Balkan beats, gypsy laments and cossack high kicks”, Stranger Than Paradise takes place on the last Sunday of every month, amongst the totem poles, bamboo and crocodile skins of the South London Pacific Bar. On a recent Pirate themed night, the Gypsy punk band was followed by the burlesque performer who dressed up in different food groups (trifle, pitta bread), whilst cigarette girls walked around the club selling eye patches and pirate knick knacks out of their trays.

The first Sunday of every month, 7pm-1am, South London Pacific bar, 340 Kennington Road, SE11

Saturday, December 18, 2004

6) Lady Luck

The Honeytrap Guide to London Burlesque

The dance floor is a swirl of couples swing dancing and Leo Sayer has been seen in audience watching a lady covered in a smattering of sequins dancing around her pole. The night is situated underneath lapdancing club Secrets, but while the girls upstairs try and separate the male audience and their money, downstairs in Lady Luck, it is all about the tease rather than the strip, for the burlesque performers.

Every Friday from 10-3, underneath Secrets on 34 Eversholt Street, NW1

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

5) Time for Tea

The Honeytrap Guide to London Burlesque
Johnny and Suzette, the other founders of Modern Times, have converted the ground floor of their five-storey Georgian house into a 25 seater cinema. They hire it out for parties, where you can chose from their collection of super 8 vintage girlie movies (all car washing and bubble baths) or hire spools from the BFI. Afterwards, they invite guests upstairs into their home which is timewarped straight out of the 1940s. But beware of the dog. Their Great Dane has been known attack balls of wool when the Knitting Club held their party there.

To book Time for Tea, call 020 7729 2697

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

4) Wyndham's Wondrous Wandering Woo Woowagon Peepshow

The Honeytrap Guide to London Burlesque

David Piper, one of the founders of The Modern Times club, has also brought the travelling burlesque show back to life. On balmier London evenings, he drives around a "hot-rodded Piaggio coffee van", with a back compartment so small that the girl within it is a trained contortionist. For £2, gentlemen receive a miniature Sailor Jerry’s rum and a peek through the red velvet curtains. There they are titillated by a nearly naked lady bathed in flickery light so that she looks like she is in a vintage 8mm film. Next up, David expands his business, with a Gentleman's Club in a lorry which will travel round the country.

The Woowoo Wagon is also available for hire, see for details

Monday, December 13, 2004

3) The Modern Times Club

The Honeytrap Guide to London burlesque

Although the burlesque artists on stage might wear corsets and pasties, the Modern Times audience covers up in glamorous vintage gowns and three-piece suits. For their Halloween Nightporter’s Ball at the Great Eastern hotel, they performed a ritual voodoo sacrifice, involving a curved dagger, bowl of milk and a bebop saxophone soundtrack, but most months they simply “conduct the most extensive rakery for about 200 years” in Throgmortons at Bank.
The secretive Modern Times is by invite only

Build your own vintage porn library 4

Café Flesh
Café Flesh kicks off with a housewife and an exterminator dressed as a rat, having sex in front of three men in high chairs, dressed in baby drag. Part porno, part performance art, part Z-movie science fiction, Café Flesh is set in a future where 99% of the human race have been rendered “sex negative” by a nuclear holocaust, so that the touch of another person makes them violently ill. The unscathed 1% of “sex positives” are forced to perform in nightclubs, reminding the positives what they are missing. By setting all the sex on stage, the director Rinse Dream can dress it up into weird tableaux where a boss/secretary secuction gets warped into a girl fucking a man dressed as a giant pencil. The sex is made even more naughty by the sex negative audience watching every move, who the director also parallels with us, the voyeuristic audience watching at home. Apart from the creative, weird sex scenes, the two other best things about the film are the New Wave, ridiculously Eighties costumes and the industrial synthy cabaret music, composed by Mitchell Froom (hammond organ player with The Corrs.) Check out, Café Flesh 2 for even more kitschy sex, involving a bullfight and twins in matching electric chairs.

Things to look out for: Angel being discovered as a sex positive and loosing her virginity on stage, while disembodied arms stick up through holes in the stage floor, clicking along in time to the music.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

2) Rudegirls

The Honeytrap guide to London burlesque
Ladies-only night Rudegirls describes itself as a “lipstick smearing night of corruption for the fairer sex, be she staight, gay or bi.” For their Halloween party, their headline act jumped out of a coffin and poured a bottle of vodka over herself, while singing “Life is a Cabaret”. Expect to play strip poker to the sound of 50s lounge music, while wearing one of the following items from their dress code: bikini, vintage lingerie, rollerskates, or yashmak. The next Rudegirl event is Friday 4th February in the Penthouse at Egg.

1) The Whoopee Club

The Honeytrap Guide to London burlesque

The Whoopee Club has seen everything from pole-dancing water nymphs (the Million Dollar Mermaid themed night), to a tassle-twirling mono-browed Frida Kahlo (Mexican Madness). The founders, Lara and Tamara, also run a Whoopee boutique, where they design a pair of knickers each month to match their theme, and an agency, so you can hire sailorgirls and sword swallowers for your own party. Their next night Kiss of her Flesh is Egyptian-themed, and is being held at the Great Eastern Hotel on 19th December, to be followed in June by a synchronised swimming extravaganza.

Tease Please: a guide to London burlesque

The word burlesque comes from the latin burlare- to laugh at. In the mid-nineteenth century burlesque meant the comedies that the lower classes used to put on to parody the upper classes, with the female actresses flaunting their bodies in tights to outrage Victorian society. Over time, it evolved into today’s defintion of striptease, with the girls showing more and more skin to keep pulling the punters in. Burlesque was banned in New York in the late ‘30s, the advent of television in the ‘50s then emptied the rest of the burlesque theatres around the country into their living rooms to be bewitched by their new TV sets. The revival was kickstarted in the 80s, when Dixie Evans, who was known as the Marilyn Monroe of burlesque in its heyday, collected together Jayne Mansfield’s heart-shaped couch along with Gypsy Rose Lee’s glove collection and started the Exotic World museum on Route 66, between LA and Las Vegas. Hollywood turned the spotlight on burlesque with Moulin Rouge and its Lady Marmalade video. The trend trickled over to London from America about two years with the opening of The Whoopee Club. Now, in today’s world of Abi Titmuss and Zoo magazine, burlesque suddenly feels fresh and inspiring again. It’s a strip club without silicon, with curvy body shapes. The boys get all the titillation of seeing a nearly nudie lady and the girls feel comfortable and love the glamour. Here’s our guide to the top ten burlesque nights in London. Just remember, the unspoken rule is that the audience is just as interesting to look at as the performers, so dress up. And if your going to try and twirl your nipple tassles, the trick is not to look down.

Build your own vintage porn library 3

The Devil in Miss Jones
Georgina Spelvin, was never supposed to have been the lead in The Devil in Miss Jones. She was originally hired as the on-set caterer for the 27 cast and crew. She was asked to stand in and read the lines for the female role whilst they were casting another role, but the director Gerard Damiano was so floored by her reading that he re-wrote the script for her. He changed the heroine, in Spelvin’s own words, from a 19-year old buxom sexpot, to a 36-year old flatchested, slightly cross-eyed, old maid. Damiano, had just had enormous box office success with the comedic Deep Throat, but in 1972, thought the time had come for a good pornographic art film. So he named his protagonist Miss Jones after the Marquis de Sade novel Justine, and started his next opus with his virgin spinster slitting her wrists in the bath. She is condemned to hell for her sin of suicide, but when she meets the cheerful, understanding Lord of Darkness (dressed in a black polo neck), he allows her a short reprieve back on earth to commit the sin of lust. The author Anthony Petkovich describes Spelvin’s performance perfectly as: “She not only fucked men, women, snakes, and bananas, but performed anals and double penetrations with the sincere voraciousness of a starved cannibal unleashed in an over-crowded aerobics class.”

Things to look out for:
Georgina and (her real life girlfriend at the time) Judith Hamilton simultaneously performing fellatio on Marc Stevens, and sharing his snowball.

Premature articulation

Karaoke translates in Japanese as “dead orchestra”. Pornaoke translates as contestants adding the moan and groan track to a silent clip of vintage porn. The porn karaoke craze started in Philadelphia, then Berliners got very excited about it, now Club Ego in Edinburgh has just opened up the first UK pornaoke night, with the tagline “We provide the scenes, You provide the screams.” On arrival, you are handed a menu of 30 second clips from European hardcore flicks to choose from, including Scene 3: Position Reverse Cowgirl and Scene 7: Position Ménage à Trois le Homme. The compere, Perrier award-winning stand up, Garth Cruickshanks, asks you to chose your porn name (Randy Rimshot and Labia Minora are his favourites so far), then all you have to do is come for the crowd, while a wah-wah guitarist accompanies you. Spoilports Scottish Women Against Pornography have called the night “sexist and tawdry beyond belief”, so the club has been forced to place cartoon beavers and cockerels over the offending parts.
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