I was very curious to see "Burlesque is More" at The Annoyance Theater and Bar when I learned that it is a satire and being directed by Annoyance artistic director and founder, Mick Napier. The choreographer (as well as a performer) for the show is Sarah O'Dwyer and the technical director is Duke Harbison.
The new theater is beautiful. The large room is open, with high ceilings and deep red walls. There's plenty of room between the tables that have four chairs each. There is food, drinks and a very attentive waitstaff. It's a comfortable room to visit.
The show is very well done. It is as good as any regular or comedic burlesque that I've seen. In some ways it's better than most because there is absolutely no seriousness about the burlesque and that sets the performers free. I think that none of the performers are trained dancers except for O'Dwyer They are actors/comedians.
In the beginning they took a suggestion as a group and it ran through the show in the breaks between acts. This improvising started off slowly but got some good laughs as the night went on. The host for the show was Tim Heurlin as Nick "Crazy Legs" Velveteen and he did some fine acting as the carnival barker type, owner of the Rumble Room, where the show takes place. You'll get a little tired of him saying Crazy Legs, but it's part of his charm and he'll be glad to tell you all about his charms.
Kayce Alltop was first as, Beep Wolf, a Best Buy employee that had been raised by wolves. She was very funny. Next up was Megan Johns as, Ricki Mallard an anti-mannequin former model. Her mall has been shut down and she's moved in to be first in line when it reopens. She's a very good actor and did a strip with garbage and mannequin parts.
Then there was Leah Frires, oh god, she was amazing. She played Bea Applebaum, a former spelling bee participant who hasn't gotten over her long ago loss of the championship. She does a great monologue about the ins and outs of the loss and then does the craziest strip tease to a Die Antwoord song. It was a head banging, body shaking, unreal experience!
Next was Lindsey Finn as Clara Clover, a Noir Detective who's acting was outstanding and compelling. After that was Emily Fightmaster as Whitney Bates, a Sea World employee who explains why she stuck around at Sea World "after Shamu ate someone." She was very funny.
Alison Banowsky played Kristall Z. an alien abductee who stripped down to a tin foil (hat) bra with a double Big Gulp in her hand. She was funny, exaggerated and it worked well. Last was Sarah O'Dwyer as Louise Hunter, an Australian crossing guard with a stop sign and everything. She stripped to The Beatles 'Why Don't We Do It in the Road.' She's a great dancer.
The acts were fantastic, and again, as good as any burlesque I have seen and I have seen too much burlesque! The acting and commitment to the characters was outstanding and it held over in to the dances. Burlesque is More runs Saturdays at 10:30 on the Main Stage at The Anonoyance. Tickets are $20 and $15 for students.