On August 2nd, 2013, Peepshow Menagerie showcased a burlesque show dedicated to Doctor Who. Before I continue, I’d like to note two things: First that this year is Doctor Who’s 50th Anniversary. Second, just after midnight marked the 5th Anniversary of Peepshow Menagerie. Produced by Chris Beyond and Scarlett Letter, the pair have orchestrated various thematic burlesque variety shows with detail. Fans of pop culture and avid movie buffs, they have a new show ever 3rd Friday of the month.
The Doctor Who Burlesque event took place at the FAIS DO DO. A historical Art Deco Building, this classic structure worked well for the show as it took place in its Ballroom. And as a size comparison, ballrooms back in the day were not often grand as many highschoolers’ proms are today. However the venue fit the several dozen people there and had more room beyond the stage and its fully stocked bar.
Whenever I go to these shows, I set my bar low enough not to worry about inconsistencies from the source material. Fortunately, I was given more than I expected. With a rough, but enjoyable script, Chris and Scarlett put together a fun journey of a conflict between the 9th incarnation of the Doctor and The Master. To those who are new to Doctor Who, they would still enjoy the banter and improvisation strewn in and between the scripting, as well as the playfulness of the performance. The details of the dialog made several referenced and showcased a variety of characters that kept to lore:
- Clockwork Robot
- Sister Mercury – Cat Nurse
- Vampire of Venice
- Princess of the Ood
- Raknos Queen
- Weeping Angel
- Queen Victoria
- Supreme Sexy Dalek
- River Song
Just from reading the list, you can see there were some liberties taken. The heart of any live show, is when you see the performers enjoying their time on stage. And the personalities of the performers ranged from the playfulness of Spy Kitten as K9, to the elegance of Sheila Starr’s dance as the Vampire of Venice.
Although not everyone who lives in Los Angeles is aware that Burlesque Shows exist, please do not mistake this as some strip club. They are naughty, but not blatantly perverse. The entertainers are here to provide a show of art, translated and transcended from traditional mediums, where Chris and Scarlett offer an effective alternative to any other activity that the city has to offer in the evening. And while it is by no means a perfect event, it is one you can definitely unwind to and appreciate.