This is a page-turner, “an oral history of American Burlesque told by the performers who lived it.” I couldn’t put this book down until I had finished it and then read it a 2nd time. To hear about the performers and history of burlesque from the Legends that lived it is not to be missed. They paved the way for today’s performers and their experiences should be known.
Another amazing book by historian Leslie Zemeckis. In this book, she shares ” the lost stories of Sally Rand & Faith Bacon” two icons that both claimed to have created the fan dance. I found this book very interesting. Showgirl life was not for the thin-skinned, it was a hard life and female performers struggled to find continued success and to keep the spotlight shining on them.
This is a book of fiction, that takes place in New York during the Roaring 20s before the stock market crash. The main charter is a pretty and talented girl that wants to be on stage and gets a start as a Ziegfeld Follies Showgirl. It’s a fun read and I enjoyed the bits of historical facts the author put in about the rehearsal and staging that a Ziegfeld showgirl would have gone through.
A Graphic Novel about a fabulous, rabbit-loving Detective, Minky Woodcock, who uncovers a magical mystery involving Arthur Conan Doyle and escape artist Harry Houdini.
The amazing New York burlesque performer Pearls Daily is the model and inspiration for the graphic novel and main charter. It’s a harder book to find but worth the search. It is published by Titan-Comics.com
A hardcover coffee table book that should be in every burlesque performer and burlesque fans collection. World Famous Dita Von Teese shares her favorite costumes, pictures, history, beauty and makeup tips in this beautifully put-together book. A classic resource for new inspiration and appreciation of vintage glamour.
This is the ultimate “how-to” manual for vintage showgirl beauty and tricks. Dita Von Teese shares everything from her exercise routine to how-to guides on vintage hairstyles and make-up tutorials. She also shares some tried and true “secrets” that I found so helpful. It has amazing pictures and I have dog eared many pages and go back to this book often.
A collection of one of the “leading American artists of our time.”
I have been drawn to Cindy Sherman’s work as a contemporary artist because of how she transforms herself and how her “characters” tell a complete story within the frame of her camera lens.
Julie Rrap - Body Double
A collection of the Australian artist’s work for over 25 years. The theme of this collection of work and images “explores the persona of the trickster in Rraps work, and the theme of the Body Double, and considers the ways in which the artist continuously oversteps the margins of bodily representation.” This is another hard one to find, but worth the search.
Vintage Aircraft Nose Art - Ready for Duty by Gary M Valant
I stole, I mean “borrowed” this book from my partner. It is an amazing collection of over 1000 photographers of pin-up paintings on US military aircraft in World War II and Korea.
If you need inspiration for a Burlesque name, a new pose for your next photoshoot or Instagram post, this hard-cover coffee table has everything you need. Next time you need some inspiration look up Vintage Aircraft Nose Art, you won’t be disappointed!
I hope you enjoy this collection of Burlesque-inspired books. Let me know what books you would add to the list.
XOXO – Lily O Lei
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