There are only a few places in the world where you’ll be able to experience an authentic burlesque performance, and New Orleans is one of them.
After Storyville, a notorious 1897 red-light district known for its scandalous burlesque shows, prostitution houses, and vibrant jazz scene, shut down in 1917, the satire-act’s success had already embedded itself into the Big Easy’s nightlife culture. Today, thanks to performers like “Evangeline, the Oyster Girl” (who headlined Casino Royal with an act that included her rising from a giant oyster shell and dancing with an oversized pearl), NOLA’s burlesque scene stands among the most remarkable in the world. Follow us now as we guide you through New Orleans’ best spots for burlesque.
Irvin Mayfield’s Jazz Play House, known as one of the best jazz clubs in town, hosts Trixie Minx’s show that features music by Michael Watson in the French Quarter’s Royal Sonesta Hotel. With a rotating cast of soloists performing classic strip teases to live music, this parody-show puts a modern spin on Bourbon Street’s classic burlesque scene. Trixie Minx, who has performed throughout the U.S., Europe and Australia, teases audience members with her comic-inspired strip performance every Friday at midnight.
Specializing in re-creating Bourbon Street’s 1940s nightlife entertainment, Bustout Burlesque is an authentic burlesque show that is bringing back New Orleans’ risqué acts with beautiful striptease dancers, live music, singers, and more. Based at the NOLA House of Blues, the vaudeville continues to be at the forefront of the local and national scene by featuring some of the word’s most beautiful and talented performers. Visitors can find out about performances that take place at various locations around the Big Easy and purchase tickets for the All-American burlesque re-creation by visiting its website.
With acts ranging from fire eaters and comedians to aerialists and, of course, beautiful burlesque dancers, Fleur de Tease is one of the leading variety venues in New Orleans. Produced by burlesque dancer Trixie Minx, this show is designed to please those who enjoy extravagant, carnival-style performances. Fleur de Tease hosts events throughout the city almost every week. Visitors can reserve a table by purchasing a $25 (£17) ticket via the company’s website. If you aren’t worried about reserving a table, you can purchase a $15 (£10) general admission ticket at the door.
Slow Burn was founded by Nona Narcisse in 2009 and has always been a show that combines burlesque’s “classic style and glamour with punk rock attitude, and rock ‘n roll fury.” It is a quarterly performance hosted by the popular Howlin’ Wolf concert hall, which has a mahogany bar and pub fare. Aside from the main show, there are also outrageous performances, such as “Night Under the Big Topless,” where spectators experience a circus-themed stage filled with acrobats, mimes and clowns, an authentic tarot card reading, and gorgeous burlesque dancers. Other shows include The Blue Book Cabaret, Big Deal Burlesque, and Whiskey and Rhinestones.
A local favorite, The AllWays Lounge & Theatre is an alternative theater and bar located in New Orleans’ Faubourg Marigny/Bywater neighborhood. This cabaret, which hosts events almost every night, is known for its live and eccentric entertainment. It hosts performances by neo-burlesque superstars like Bella Blue and her Dirty Dime Peep Show, as well as indie music concerts, plays, wrestling matches, drag shows and even free dance lessons. For those looking to experience an authentic New Orleans burlesque performance, the AllWays Lounge is the place for you.