Shot from Elle Dorado YouTube video, 2012.

New Orleans Burlesque Festival Jazzes Up Bourbon Street

Get ready to shake, bump, and grind. The 7th Annual New Orleans Burlesque Festival shimmies down to New Orleans this weekend for four nights and three days of live burlesque shows, parties, and workshops presented by Rick Delaup and a top-tier international cast of performers.

The festival is will take place Thursday, September 17th through Sunday, September 20th at the Theater at Harrah’s, the House of Blues, and elsewhere.

The New Orleans Burlesque Festival is one of the most popular of its kind, attracting an estimated 2000 attendees from around the country and beyond.

The Queen of Burlesque competition will feature eight of the top “classic striptease” dancers competing for the title, accompanied by a live jazz band. Last year’s queen, Elle Dorado, will perform her step-down number, and Ginger Lee Valentine will perform her “Evangeline the Oyster Girl Act” (passed down to her by the original Oyster Girl, Miss Kitty West.)

Workshops, run by Ruby Room Studio of Dallas, will teach a variety of skills including burlesque dancing, belly dancing, twerking, pin-up styling, pastie making, and jazz music for burlesque.

This year’s festival includes dancers from the US, Norway, New Zealand, Australia, and Canada and celebrated guests Rita Alexander the Champagne Girl, a headlining act on Bourbon Street in the 1960s, and Leslie Zemeckis, author of BurlyQ and Goddess of Love Incarnate (about Lili St. Cyr.)

Come celebrate one of Bourbon Street’s original claims to fame, and in the meantime, check out Elle Dorado’s winning Queen of Burlesque performance from last year!