High Tease – what a tease!

I went to High Tease last night at SkyCity Theater. I have always wanted to go to a burlesque show, I have seen them before on TV. They are stunning to watch and usually have amazing costumes and dancing. So, I had high expectations – especially when the ad SkyCity used to promote the show read like this:

High Tease is a one-night only burlesque spectacular featuring New Zealand’s premier talent, including:

  • Virtuoso of vintage glamour, Leda Petit
  • Circus siren, Venus Star
  • Intriguing fetishist, The Magenta Diamond
  • Honey L’amour, the queen of parody.

Presented by the irresistible Ebon Grayman of Cirque du Soleil’s ‘Allegra’.

The show promises to be a visual feast full of fun, tease and gorgeousness. There’ll be whips, water-baths, silks, champagne, ostrich fans, parasols, hula hoops, contortion, ballet, singing, comedy and of course lots of disrobing by our bevvy of fabulous beauties.

Video footage will complement the pastiche of performances making up the two hour extravaganza, which will showcase the principle genres of burlesque.

This show is not to be missed! Seldom do such noteworthy entertainers appear together. You’ll be titillated, delighted and thoroughly entertained and left basking in the glory that is the wonderful world of burlesque.

Let’s just say SkyCity and the people involved in the show over promised and under delivered!! This is what I was expecting compared to what we got to see:

  • A stage set, props, theme setting, some thing amazingly visual for the eye. Instead we saw a bare stage, a very large stage that was way too large for one girl to do her act on. Some of the acts didn’t have any props, and the ones that did were a little tacky. For example a blow up doll as a companion, and a rusty old bath tub…
  • The dancing was average at the best. Although you cannot compare burlesque dancing to anything else, the ladies moves didn’t blow me away. They were not polished.
  • The lighting…hmmmm. SOFT PINK LIGHTING is the key to shows like this. Instead we saw harsh white lighting that showed off all of the ladies lumps and bumps. You would think that this would be a number 1 criteria when performing in front of audiences without your clothes on, and I would have expected the ladies to maybe have some say in that. Maybe they did and didn’t actually realise how it made them look.
  • The venue/stage. There was one performer on stage during each act. I am saying it again, the stage was way too large for a solo act without any setting or props. They got swallowed up by that stage, it lacked atmosphere and vibe. For a one night only show they could have chosen a venue with a more intimate setting and did more than one show to keep up with demand. Or they could have curtained off some of the stage and created a background set for some visual pleasure for the audience.
  • The ad says “there will be contortion”…there was one move by The Magenta Diamond that I guess you could say was contortion. There were no other contortion moves. With that said, The Magenta Diamond was very pleasing to the eye and highly skilled in her act, the large stage just swallowed her up and ruined it for me.
  • Video footage was played at the beginning and then again during intermission. This was brilliant footage of old school burlesque from the 20s through to the 50s. They also showed some footage of a burlesque show in London. It was an amazing show and set our expectations of what was to come. Instead this footage gave us false expectations.
  • The star of the show was Venus Star. When they describe her as a circus siren they are not wrong. She had 2 spectacular acts using hula hoops and silks. Her sets were visually pleasing and didn’t need much because her act was strong enough to pull of the simplicity.

I would like to add that people trust the SkyCity brand and when they put on shows like this it could tarnish their brand and/or reputation. When I say shows like this, I mean setting false expectations and not delivering on the “visual feast” they describe in their ad. This particular show would have worked so much better in a more intimate setting.

I would also like to add that I took my partner with me, he hadn’t seen a burlesque show before so he didn’t have any expectations, and even he was disappointed. That to me says quite a lot.

About Karley Burgs

Artist - Painter, Sculptor Lover of Taxidermy Girl Friday
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1 Response to High Tease – what a tease!

  1. M. says:

    Well said. Such a shame though…

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