Interview with Burlesque Artist Ruby Rebelle
Intrepid Ruby Rebelle is a self-taught burlesque performer who placed herself in the public eye by putting on her own charity show. A queen of comical routines, fire-eating and glass-walking, Ruby’s keen as mustard and sweet as cherry pie. Plus she has a love for zombies!
How did you discover Burlesque and what about it made you want to be part of it?
I have always loved the glitz and glamour of the old hollywood movie stars and the elegance that they portray. I had always had issues with my body, and a close friend told me about how she had gone to body confidence/burlesque workshops.I felt this might be a great way to boost my self esteem and build my confidence…
However, I was working part which was a problem for saving the money to get to the workshops. Even so, I didnt want to give up… so I watched video after video of performances from the top burlesque performers on the internet and taught myself. I spent months working on my first burlesque routine. Being a newbie and having no training meant it was hard to be booked for a show – so instead I decided to organise a charity show! The show was a great success and I met some amazing performers through it.
You must be aware by now of the Cher/Christina Aguilera film Burlesque. Is it better to be misrepresented by Hollywood in order to raise awareness of your medium or would you rather the film industry left your world alone entirely?
I haven’t personally watched the film so I can’t comment on it. However, it is possible that because of films like Burlesque the real essence of burlesque will be taken away and replaced by people who just want to copy Christina Aguilera. The media will always be interested in burlesque because it does cause controversy – however without the media, people wouldnt be so interested in coming to watch the shows.
TOP TIP FROM THE EDS: Dear Reader, if you’re in the mood to watch films featuring burlesque, make sure you watch Cabaret starring Liza Minelli. It’s a lush, sexy, dark musical about gender revolution and political strife in 1930s Berlin. Not so much Parisian showgirl burlesque… more about underground cabaret done to unite the people and prick the inflated balloon of dark social forces. BRILLIANT. Great songs and outfits, too!
If you had the option, advice would you give your younger self in terms of your career?
Well… as I am only 20 and at the beginning of my career, I am still learning and making mistakes. I dont think I would change anything I have done so far. I have had great support from friends and family and have met some wonderful friends along the way!
NOTE FROM THE EDS: We have loads of articles for aspiring alternative models and burlesque performers, including how to become a burlesque dancer.
Whats the worst post performance chat up line youve heard?
Luckily, the audiences I have met have all been very supportive and friendly and havent overstepped the mark. The worst I have had is I didnt recognise you with your clothes on. Which is pretty rubbish if you ask me! After I perform I usually pop some clothes back on and watch the rest of the show with the audience, so I get to meet a lot of people. Everyone has been lovely!
What do you bring to your performance that nobody else does?
Since I’m self-taught I’ve had to work harder to get noticed. Im not under anyone elses name, so I have tried to make my acts as entertaining and eye-catching as possible. I love performing comical burlesque routines and routines that make you smile. There are so many classic fan dances and stripteases around, so I aim to make my acts a little different. My favourite routine to perform would be my fire eating and glass walking act.
If you want to book Ruby or become a Facebook fan, click here.
TOP TIP FROM THE EDS: If you’re looking to book burlesque artists, Facebook is a great way to find them. If you are a burlesque artist, make sure you have a Facebook page!
This interview first appeared on No-One Is Innocent. Thanks, Nev!