Theatre Review: Vanguard Burlesque opens Wonderland Festival with a bang

Vanguard Burlesque is no shy newcomer to the Brisbane drag and burlesque scenes.

Fronted during its Wonderland Festival run by local drag royalty, Vollie LaVont, and featuring the likes of Betty Lovecat, Ruby Slippers, and Kryptonite, this troupe really do live up to their forward-looking name.

From the sultry stylings of Rielle La’Vish and special guest Lila Luxx, to the comedy leanings of Betty Lovecat and the Lucille Ball-esque Maple Rose, Vanguard treated the audience to burlesque in all its forms, including Hall of Fame legend Kryptonite representing the finest in boy-lesque.

While I wouldn’t say that a burlesque show is only as good as its audience (the talent on show here is evidence enough to lay that one to rest), a quiet crowd did make for a slightly shaky start.

Perhaps a little education is needed – if the performer looks like they’re even slightly ready to take off an item of clothing, make some bloody noise!

With burlesque legend Dita Von Teese also taking to the Brisbane stage this past week, it’s wonderful to see Australian talent flexing its own muscles.

And while Vanguard Burlesque is happy to nod to the traditions of the art form, it’s at its strongest blazing its own path, and showcasing artists who offer something a little different.

Just watch a Ruby Slippers performance – you’ll soon see what I mean!

Quirky and exciting, but always glamorous, Vanguard Burlesque has since finished their Wonderland run. You can stay up to date with the Vanguard team over on their Facebook!

Review originally published on IMHO on 22/11/19
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