Burlesque: Heart of the Glitter Tribe

Our city, revered (or not) for its abundance of strip clubs, has a whole other thriving culture of guys and gals (and gender nonconforming folks, too) who take their clothes off for crowds: burlesque! I’ve always thought of burlesque as what grown-up theater kids do when they want to be sexy but can’t find a production of Cabaret; after watching Burlesque: Heart of the Glitter Tribe, a new documentary about the scene in Portland, I know there’s more to it than that. The featured performers come to burlesque from all walks of life, and pour their time, sweat, and money into the craft. While those backstories are interesting, the performance footage is where it’s at. I was mesmerized. It’s not all old-timey smut and fishnets and tiny top hats! Did you know “assels” are a thing? They’re like titty tassels, but for buttcheeks. Knowledge is power, friends. Anyway, when so many of us grumble about artists being priced out of Portland, it’s nice to celebrate the folks that are still here, doing their thing. Portland’s got some perks. Some of them have tassels. by Elinor Jones
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Jon Manning