The show must go on

This photo was shot on film backstage at one of my first theatre gigs, circa 2002. Being the only one working wardrobe during the Shim Sham Revue taught me so many skills that would serve me throughout my career in live entertainment. The dressing room was the size of a closet and had to fit all six of our talented burlesque dancers, a dashing MC, the larger than life house comedienne, and whomever our featured guest happened to be that evening. The drummer for our live band was backed up right against the curtain where the girls were getting ready, and it wasn’t unusual for there to be a few unfortunate interactions. All of the quick changes were intense and included wigs as well as makeup application, much of which was thick concealer to hide tattoos that would inevitably come off along with the various stripped off costume pieces. The time in between shows was brief and I was often left with only moments to spare before second show’s opening curtain. Suffice it to say, I loved every minute of it.
When I arrived in Vegas and began working large scale productions, I was amazed by how easy the show tracks were in comparison. My time in that old New Orleans venue challenged me in so many ways and the lessons I learned have served me well throughout the years. The current situation sees countless performers, vendors, and backstage crew missing the call of the stage as we watch our industry be decimated. Many of us are feeling a bit lost right now, but doing everything we can to preserve our craft. The future is uncertain, but be sure of one thing – we can’t wait to entertain you again ❤️

Welcome to Storyville!

Introducing “Storyville”, the first one of a kind piece to ever appear on our official website!  Inspired by the years I spent living in New Orleans, this curve hugging black and white ensemble is a guaranteed show stopper.

When one is strolling down the weathered streets of the Big Easy, it’s hard not to imagine the decadent lifestyle of the notorious district formerly known as “Storyville”.  One of the first things that struck me upon visiting New Orleans for the first time was the beautiful architecture and history that seemed to live inside of every structure, lamp post, and weeping willow.  My first New Orleans apartment was located at the far end of the French Quarter and I used to spend hours on my balcony watching the people milling about below.  I would often imagine that I was somehow transported back in time, existing among the jazz enthusiasts, rowdy bar hoppers, and all others who were up to no good in the French Quarter.

I was somewhat obsessed with Victorian clothing while I was growing up and had this idea that everyone from that era was stuffy, refined, and unnaturally elegant.  It has become delightfully apparent to me that this was not always the case and Storyville successfully shatters the pervasive myth.  An area designed to contain illegal and debaucherous activity, this hot bed of bump and grind thrived for almost half a century before finally being shut down in 1917.

I believe that although the times may change, people really don’t.  Regardless of the rules, there are always those who live to break them.  We are the misfits, the instigators, the tricksters with contagious laughter who dance in the rain and have bourbon for breakfast.  A non-conformist by nature, I can’t imagine what else to do with my time except design sinister and seductive dresses for ridiculously beautiful women.  So let’s turn off the television, slip into something devious, and have a cocktail or two in the city that care forgot.