Bukowski and Burlesque: Blue Stockings Review (PHOTOS)

Photos by Lisa Cates and Devin Hiemstra, Review by Lisa Cates

Those expecting the standard giggles and jiggles of high-energy burlesques shows are in for a surprise from Blue Stocking’s Booze, Broads, & Bukowski. Far from an average poetry reading, the ladies’ dramatic performance of Charles Bukowski was stocked full of emotion, comedy and more than a hint of sexy.  


The show kicks off with two comedic pieces before diving into a dramatic performance of "Blue Bird" by LegAssaurus Rex, donning only her skivvies and an oversized men's flannel.  The wardrobe theme was hot-chick-in-dude-clothes (they were performing a drunk guy’s writing after all).  At one point, director and performer Picolla Tushy removed first a robe, then a sexy silk number to reveal a black tank, boxer shorts, and a good laugh from the audience.


Tushy said she fell in love with Bukowski and decided to put a woman’s voice to his words through burlesque.  She wanted to show how “he has this control over women and they think he’s an asshole but they still love him.”


“I wanted to be able to play up his comedy and bring out some of his ugliness rather than—well a lot of people read him and they put him on a pedestal—well, no this is a drunk and we want to play him as that man who is a drunk but also really really funny.”


The ladies each appeared on stage, drink in hand, from seats in the audience at the intimate Shadowbox Theater playing both Bukowski and his supporting rolls.  At one point, Lana Turnover came crashing through a theatre entrance and face-planted in the aisle with an empty bottle of Jack before crawling to stage to sing—to belt–her piece.  


 “We worked on getting rid of the layout of poetry and making it more personified and making it definitely about the people and not about how pretty or funny it looks on a page” said Tushy.


Honey Tangerine played a hilarious three-part role which included a sexy derobing woman, the Blue Stockings' interpretation of Bukowski's mental narrative. 


The Blue Stockings officially became a troop recently but have been performing together since Picolla Tushy brought Boobs and Goombas, a Super-Mario themed burlesque down from Chicago last August. The Booze, Boobs, and Bukowski is a fundraiser for their upcoming “I Ain’t Afraid of No Boo” burlesque parody of Ghostbusters.


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