Tag Archives: Burlesque Warrior

Don’t Pick Them Up, Don’t Lay Them Down

31 May

Something to think about from Dr. Angelou: “Don’t pick them up, don’t lay them down.” Meaning, when you’re at the top and those around you are pouring compliments on you, simply smile. When you’re in the bottom of a curve of success and those around you turn to each other and say, she doesn’t have it etc, simply smile. If you don’t pick up the empty compliments, you can discard the empty criticism. “The reward for the doing must be the doing.”

Maya the Dancer

Beastie Boys Burlesque

17 May

Beastie Boys Burlesque

Rock the Sure Shot and come out to The Croft, 7 June, 8:30, £5. All proceeds to Macmillan Cancer Support.

Event Page

Yoga Mama

9 Mar

I’ve had a few people ask me about my stretching regime, so I thought I’d spread a little Karmic Love and share it here. I’ve loved Yoga for years, through it I’ve gained mental clarity, solace and peace in bad times and the ability to put my forehead flat on the ground with my legs stretched out.

Begin by getting in touch with your breath. Take a deep breath in through your nose and out through your mouth, really feel your chest expand, lift and contract with each breath. As this becomes more natural, shift your awareness to your standing position. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, relax your hands at your sides and feel your body lift. Straighten your spine, keep your shoulders even and keep your chin parallel to the floor beneath you. Now let’s begin.

Standing with feet shoulder width apart, raise your arms straight up, keep your feet grounded and stretch through your whole body. Bending your right arm to grasp your left elbow, stretch through your right side, keeping your right foot grounded. Repeat in reverse.

Relax arms, bring feet together, relax knees and gently roll forward to the floor, feeling each vertebra relax and stretch as your finger tips reach for the floor. Hold and breathe.

Walk your hands forward in to Downward Facing Dog. Arms are stretched out, feet are flat and hips are raised to the sky.

Image

Downward Facing Dog

Drop left knee, then right knee for a deeper stretch.

Come down on to all fours for Cat – Cow. Round the back, dropping the head, then gently reverse the pose so head and neck are extended up. Repeat 5 times. Keep breathing!

Back up in to Downward Facing Dog, this is a great transition pose, then straighten body and with great control lower the body to the ground as slowly as you can in to Chaturanga. Keep back straight and tuck your butt in to avoid lower back strain.

Image

Chaturanga

Lower yourself completely to the ground and relax for a moment. Now it’s time to get fierce. Place forearms on the ground and stretch upper half of body upwards. Cobra! You can also open your mouth wide here to bring fresh blood in to your face and imagine devouring your prey.

Image

Fierce

Now back up on to all fours, sit back on your heels, arms outstretched in front of you, forehead to the floor, in to child pose. Release through the forehead and keep breathing.

Image

Child Pose

On to the stripper stretches. Back on all fours, bring your right leg in front of you, bent at a 90 degree angle, while your left leg remains stretched out straight behind you. Extend your body over the bent leg, reaching through your finger tips. Breathe deep. Move out of pose. I like to do 20 girly style push-ups here, then repeat pose on left leg, then 20 more girly style push-ups. This stretch will really open up your hips.

Take a brief respite in child pose again, then bring yourself back up in to the standing position. Continue to open up the hips with Warrior 1 and Warrior 2 poses, repeated on each side.

Image

Warrior 1

Image

Warrior 2

Finish this off by grasping your left ankle with your left hand, bending your left leg at the knee, right leg remains straight and grounded. Extend your left arm straight up to complete the full stretch. You’ll feel it through your side. This is, suitably enough, the Dancer Pose.

Keeping your focus on a point at eye level in front of you, bring your left leg round so that the sole of your foot is pressed firmly in to the inside of your right thigh. Keep that right foot firmly anchored. Bring both arms straight up and parallel to each other, hold & breath, then bring hands together in front of you for a moment of focus. Repeat in reverse. I always do this little sequence right before I go on stage. It’s an awesome stretch and great for focus.

Finally, sit in a cross legged, Lotus, Buddah on the Mountain pose, rest your hands on your knees and breathe. Focus on what you want out of your day, or just let a moment of stillness become you.

Namaste.

Image

Evolution - Mondrian

Disclaimer – Always check with your doctor before undergoing any exercise regime. I am not a trained Yoga Instructor, merely an enthusiast. I recommend taking a class with a trained instructor to ensure that you are moving correctly and to avoid injury.

Have Love, Will Travel

23 Jan

Hi Universe, Please help me continue to be the Journey(Wo)man that I want to be. 2011 was hard grind and so awesome. I was so inspired by the cities I danced in and the people within them. That’s all I want. Is to dance. A lot of things came and went last year, but it’s all growth. Like most sharks have to keep moving to breath, I’ve got to keep moving to keep dancing.

For those of y’all coming up behind me, I want to make this place be safer and better for you and to you than it was to me. For those in front of me, my love knows no bounds for the light and inspiration you have passed down.

2011 had a lot of heartache. Some real, some just felt real at the time.

Dance. Be inspired. Keep moving.

Ashe

Ashe.

New York City

9 Oct

New York, once again you have saved me from myself. I feel inspired and ready to do it all over again. I had the awesome pleasure of dancing at the legendary Slipper Room and ass kicking Kitty Nights. You can see me performing “Surfer Luna” at Kitty Nights below. Thank you Miss Velveteen Hussey for the whoops and hollers.

It’s an act that still needs a little tightening, but, fuck yeah, it felt good to do it in that bar with rock solid dancers like The Flying Fox.

Inspiration is everywhere. Like the Hall of Biodiversity.

Or the Occupation of Wall Street.Or tigers.

Or Voodoo.

Or the view from the Greenpoint ferry dock that you could never grow tired of.

It’s everything you’ve heard, everything you’ve ever wanted. I’ll be back in the spring.

 

 

Journey(Wo)Man

16 Jun

This year has been incredible. It started with me dancing at all kinds of shows in the UK. But then, something changed. There was this shift in me, I think it was about February, when everything changed. Everything got bigger, more vibrant, colours got brighter. I tried to sit tight, but I couldn’t. It wasn’t in me any more. I talk and talk about the love I have for Burlesque and all that it stands for, but I wasn’t really doing it. So, I changed it.

As of Friday 13th May, I quit my admin day job. I commemorated it at Broad Street Studios.

Courtesy of Marcos Attwood

Lucky Number 13

I spent the rest of May back in my adopted city, New Orleans, getting inspired and drinking too much Gin. I drove to Austin and was lucky enough to perform with the gracious and beautiful Five B Pin-Ups.

Backstage at Elysium with badass Texas Mamas

It felt so good, y’all. This is the kind of freedom I’ve been striving for. I’m not going to lie. This is everything I want, everything I’ve worked hard for, everything I want for the future,  but this shit don’t come easy. My new hardcore drive has taken my focus away from friendships and even my marriage. It’s a tricky tightrope and I sure as hell haven’t perfected yet. Maybe balance is possible, or maybe you just can’t have it all. I don’t know yet.

I’ve got a load of awesome and exciting shows coming up in the UK over the rest of the summer, then, and this totally blows my mind and rocks my world, I’ll be dancing in New York City at the end of September/beginning of October. If I solve the mysteries of life in that time, I’ll be sure to pass that on.

If you’d like to help me spread the Laveau love in New York and help a sister out, buy one of my Tuesday Laveau T-shirts. They’re ₤16/$20. The design is by the super talented Marcos Attwood who you should really get tattooed by. I ship with love, just drop me a line TuesdayLaveau@googlemail.com.

Tuesday Laveau T-shirt Design

 

Burlesque Warrior Part II

27 Feb

I was back stage last night at a burlesque show, not dancing, just stopped by to see some of my favourite girls who were. Backstage is always so electric, so kinetic. Glitter, feathers, wine out of paper cups and discarded tit tape wrappers. Somehow, the conversation took a turn, story after story poured out of each of us, about violence. I don’t know why, but what seems to unite us all, is that we are survivors. No wait, not survivors. We’re fucking fighters.

We do what we do because it is powerful and joyful, sometimes brutal, sometimes painful. Like a life lived. There seems to be some darkness on the edge of the scene, and I think that right now it is so important that we pull together and care for each other. This is a time to fight and rise. And rise we will.

Erzulie Freda - Lwa of Love