Feather boas and David Bowie came together Thursday,
The Nude & Rude Revue, a Skagway-based burlesque troupe, brought glitzy routines and glam rock covers to the Red Dog Saloon. They’re in town for a three-night stand during a West Coast tour.
“The best part is seeing it all come together, especially with all the Juneau performers and Skagway performers and any guest performers on any given night,” said performer Kelsey Riker.
Riker, a musical theater actor from New York City, started performing performing burlesque a couple of summers ago while doing seasonal work in Skagway and is a living example of why the troupe’s traveling show is titled “Try It; You’ll Like It.”
“I stumbled into burlesque,” Riker said. “It was another way to get on stage. I said, ‘Oh, it’s just in Alaska, it’ll be fine. Then I went back to New York and was performing burlesque. I tried it and liked it. Definitely.”
Co-producers and locals Cameron Brockett and Taylor Vidic said there were a ton of people, sponsors and collaborators who helped make the show a reality.
“You’re reminded every time you do something like this how many wonderful people are out there,” Vidic said.
A variety show
Every performance brought a different energy to the stage.
Some were silly and campy, others aimed for serious and smoldering, and a couple were totally off the wall, but while battling head colds, obtrusive moose heads and a technical hiccup, every performer brought it.
The show also included a few straightforward musical numbers and a show-stealing magic show.
Performances of all kinds were mostly backed by the Better Than Boobs Band, who charged through brassy covers of classics such as “I Put a Spell On You,” “Green Onions,” and a medley of Bowie covers that included the relative deep cut “I’m Afraid of Americans.”
But plenty of hollering from the audience kept it far from silent.
Attendees were overwhelmingly supportive, and every man and woman who got on stage walked off to loud clapping and cheers and a flurry of stage-bound dollar bills.
Based on polls by applause, the crowd was evenly split between men, women, first-timers and old hands.
Smiles and laughter were the common thread.
Teresa Bruce, who said her daughter knows troupe members Vidic and Brockett, was the first in line for the show.
Bruce was ready and waiting at least 20 minutes before the doors opened.
“I didn’t have tickets, and I was worried they’d be sold out,” Bruce said. “I’ve seen them before, and they’re wonderful. I might even come again tomorrow night.”
Riker said she’d recommend doing exactly that since each night offers unique surprises.
“I won’t say exactly, but burlesque is all about the tease, and just when you think you know what you’re getting, it’s something else,” Riker said.
Know & Go
What:Nude & Rude Revue: “Try It; You’ll Like It”
Where: The Red Dog Saloon
When: Friday, Sept. 28 and Saturday, Sept. 29
Admission: $25 for general admission and $40 for VIP
• Contact arts and culture reporter Ben Hohenstatt at 523-2243 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @capweekly.