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Little Missy Sunshine

May 28, 2012

Being asked by one of the most respected artists in the world of burlesque to photograph her hometown show last year was a massive honour.

So when I was invited back this year I jumped at the chance.

Missy Malone must be one of the most photographed (and painted and sketched) ladies I have ever worked with, from the little instagrams she posts on her blog to the most lavish studio productions, she never looks anything less than stunning. So I’d be fibbing if I said I didn’t feel a bit of pressure to keep up that tradition, while adding something new to the mix.

Great photo of Missy Malone applying lipstick

The finishing touch – Missy Malone backstage

The last time Missy had been in my studio we shot some vintage style promotional postcards for one of her acts, so it was great to see that very costume put through its paces on stage in the show opener.

Missy Malone performs a striptease on stage

Missy’s Goldrush act gets hearts racing

Missy Malone performs with yellow fans on stage

A ‘Golden Greats’ LP cover if ever I saw one

Missy always puts on a fabulous show and assembles a great cast. A couple of her revue regulars were there that night, including the blonde Bond girl bombshell, Cherry Shakewell.

Burlesque show dressing room

Backstage with Cherry Shakewell

Cherry Shakewell striptease

Cherry Shakewell – Lady of Cake

Also back at the Missy Malone and Friends Burlesque Review was the charming and cheeky Desmond O’Connor, who effortlessly engaged the audience with his stories and songs and stuck the proceedings together with showbiz glue.

Compere Desmond O'Connor

Ringmaster Desmond O’Connor

I enjoyed the energetic and tightly choreographed flapper-style dancers, The Bee’s Knees but all that darting about made them a bugger to photograph.

Flapper dancers The Bee's Knees

The Bee’s Knees

One of the highlights of the night for me was getting to see Anna Fur Laxis perform. Well, as much as I can, when I’m viewing things through a lens. She is someone I’d obviously heard lots about, and was the cover star of the Burlesque Bible I was featured in so it was nice to meet her and get a few shots.

Her acts were great and her reputation as one of the best in the business is well deserved.

Anna Fur Laxis on stage by photographer Rachel Spivey

The two sides of Anna Fur Laxis

Anna Fur Laxis on stage by photographer Rachel Spivey

Holy moly!

Another great mover was Luna Rosa. Very evocative of old-time Hollywood she was incredibly limber and bendy but kept her perfect poise throughout both of her sexy and seductive acts.

Luna Rosa burlesque performer

What makes Luna tick? Exotic erotica

Luna Rosa swishes veil

A-wop-bop-a-luna-a-lop-bam-boobs

In a small theatre, it’s hard to run about at the foot of the stage without getting in the way, so I stayed up on my vantage point on the balcony for the performances. However the beauty of shooting a matinée is that there is enough natural light still around to get some informal shots backstage. Thanks to all the ladies who agreed to be photographed, I know it’s not something everyone is comfy with, but I think its is nice to document both sides of burlesque –  what we’re not supposed to see sometimes has as much beauty and drama as what we are.

Backstage with Luna Rosa and Cherry Shakewell

Luna and Cherry backstage

The second half of the show was as well-paced and varied as the second, with Cherry Shakewell kicking off with a rather swishy marine-themed number.

Cherry Shakewell neptune

Cherry Shakewell – Queen of the Sea

It was great to catch up with Missy again, even amid the chaos of putting on the show and performing twice herself, she never seems to get in a flap and is full of infectious positive energy. Her shows always have such a great vibe.

Missy Malone backstage

Missy prepares for her return to the stage

Missy Malone on stage with feathers and turban

Green flag means its safe to swim

Missy Malone by Raquel Rouge

A turban-powered performance

It fell to Anna Fur Laxis to close the show with a knife throwing balloon pop with a difference, and I have to say her props were amazing. Those were proper knives too. I got a nice shot her her cutting a cucumber with one but I figured you’d rather see ones like this…

Anna Fur Laxis on stage by photographer Rachel Spivey

Anna Fur Laxis – once she pops she just can’t stop

Anna Fur Laxis performs

Proper showgirl stuff from one of the top gals on the scene

It was a great show and a nice treat for me to get out and cover another burly night so close to the Garter Lounge the week before. A very big, public thanks to Missy for asking me along.

It was a pleasure.

Informal photos of Missy Malone and Magic Dave

Missy with Magic Dave

Missy’s Burlesque Revue gets around the country a fair bit so if she pops up near you I do recommend you make the effort to get out and see her and her friends do their stuff. In the meantime, you can keep up to date with her glamorous life on Facebook and Twitter and a good furtle around her blog Behind the Glitter is highly recommended too.

Tell her I sent you.

RS x

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. May 28, 2012 3:53 pm

    Amazing set of pictures! Looks like everybody had a great time at the show 🙂

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