Leicester The New Cultural Hub of Burlesque?

Wed 10th July, 2013 @ 11:46pm by thepeacockloungeburlesqueleicester

Leicester The New Cultural Hub of Burlesque?

Forget Las Vegas, Paris and London, Leicester is becoming the new cultural hub of Burlesque!

Burlesque has recently been a source of media attention as Hebden Bridge’s council has denied an application for a venue being used for burlesque on grounds of morality stating “Burlesque arouses strong feelings, and many people feel it is demeaning to women, and raises issues of gender equality”

Thankfully Leicester has made Burlesque feel much more welcome with shows across the city. The council funded Phoenix Square has shown the film “Burlesque Assassins” and documentary “Burlesque Undressed” and performers have featured in many of the cities festivals as well as being hosted in private venues, universities and theatres.

De Montfort University’s most risqué society ‘Demon Belles Burlesque’ was believed to be the first of its kind in the UK and has given rise to countless performers, costumers, event promoters and even the current ‘Reigning Queen of British Burlesque’ Eliza DeLite

Now India Starr, one of the former ‘Demon Belles’ and promoter of The Peacock Lounge Burlesque has created a new night to help aspiring burlesque and cabaret performers to achieve success.

India says “I’ve found that I have discovered a passion. Burlesque is something that lets us tie a whole host of creative disciplines together such as theatre, dance and costuming whilst making some great friends.

I created the Peacock Lounge because I felt some of the theatricality, history and quality of burlesque had been lost and wanted to bring something sensational and reminiscent of the art forms hey-day to Leicester. It’s been a challenge, I’ve had to learn a lot of new skills and it’s difficult financially, but you do it for the love of the thing. It’s something that has helped keep me focused over the past few years whilst I’ve struggled with long term depression- it’s a great boost to be good at something you enjoy.

A lot of people want to get involved in burlesque and don’t know where to start. It’s a bit of a catch 22; you need to have experience and footage to get a slot in a show, but you can’t get that experience unless someone takes a chance on you.

Cabaret Nouveau launched to welcome aspiring performers from around the country and give them the tools they need to get onto the circuit. Each performer gets the chance to attend a specialised public master class, a free promotion workshop, get fantastic photographs, videos and feedback from experienced professionals as well as competing for prizes from our sponsors.

It’s really exciting for the audience too, they can see new performers and acts before anyone else, help to choose contest winners and see behind the magic.

The city seems to be welcoming Burlesque with open arms and I am proud to be producing shows in such a culturally diverse and creative place as Leicester.”

The next Cabaret Nouveau show and workshop is on Saturday 27th July at the International Arts Centre on Garden Street. For more details or tickets visit


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