Fucking Jesus Christ

Si Yeon Lee on the annual Twisted Knickers Burlesque Show

This wasn’t called Res-erection for no reason. As I waited for the show to begin, gospel rock music, tucking pain, and the impending punishment and doom for our sins of blasphemy had shriveled up my girl-dick. And I could only wait for some kind of a miracle, perhaps in the form of some “nice booty”, as one audience member called it, to bring me back to life. Of course, I gained hope when I witnessed a performer come out from backstage and consecrate the Natty Boh of one blessed audience member.

Held at Church and Company in Hampden, Res-erection was the second annual burlesque show by Twisted Knickers Burlesque on Easter Weekend, themed as a “church revival”, with everything from a church organist, Robin Hudson, to free communion wine. The stage wasn’t separated from the audience seats, which were mostly makeshift, with couches and plastic chairs. The room was filled, some people in the back standing on the top of their chairs to look over the rest of the audience, who looked mostly like they stopped by during their daily evening walk, which made me feel overdressed in my four-inch patent leather heels.

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Cherie Nuit during her first act

The show began with the audience standing to the entrance procession, complete with a portrait of Divine, Baltimore’s patron saint. Comedian Hot Todd Lincoln, appointed as Deacon for the night, managed to get the audience laughing with some terrible church puns (and I’m sure the communion wine helped). His moment came along further down the show, when he first donned an Easter Bunny costume, then stripped it off to walk, roll, and dive into a pile of shattered glass, all in the name of Baby Jesus Christ.

The performances opened with Tapitha Kix, who came out in a white gown and white gloves, only to rip the gloves off with her teeth and run around the audience yelling “Jesus is here!” Tempete La Coeur and Ruby Rockafella showcased their acting by pretending to be a Jehovah’s Witness-gone-bad and a nun who had no problem expressing her particular love for an appropriately human-sized cross, respectively.

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Ruby Spruce in her last act

Cherie Nuit offered perhaps the most interpretative act of the night, coming out in a white mask and eyes drawn on her palms, Pan’s Labyrinth style, and proceeding to rub blood on her face and body. Ruby Spruce closed the night with her second act, dressed in a plain robe. And the audience, who had hooted and laughed at every act or joke, went silent when she held an arrow to her chest and then pointed the arrow at the audience. It was this act which called on the audience to consider that which is ignored – the misogyny parodied in these performances. The silence lasted for just a moment, until she threw off her robe.

The Twisted Knickers Burlesque will be performing at Church and Company on May 14th for a “Prom Night” special. 

Si Yeon Lee is a Baltimore-based writer from Toronto.

Images courtesy of Scott Bradley.

 

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