The New York Burlesque Festival is always a wild ride but this year was exceptional! Thanks to the producers, Angie Pontani & Jen Gapay, the performers, crew, venues, photographers, vendors and audience members who made it particularly special.
Francine performs her classic Blue Velvet routine at the 12th Annual New York Burlesque Festival Teaser Party! Video by Steven Speliotis Photo of Francine by Filip Wolak Francine on the New York Burlesque Festival Golden Pasties red carpet at the Highline Ballroom with Bunny Buxom, Bettina May & Pistola DeLuxe – photo © Ed Barnas Francine at the New York Burlesque Festival Saturday Spectacular with Tina Tassels - photo by Nathalie Zaro for the Village Voice. Double selfie with The Maine Attraction on the Golden Pasties red carpet! Love Maine and all these ladies! Can’t wait for next year’s #NYBF!!!
Have you been keeping up with The Knick on Cinemax? If you have you may have seen a glimpse of Francine as “Evelyn” in episode five, “They Capture the Heat”. Seen here with Clarence Dally, played by Allen Warnock, Francine’s character assists in selling an X-ray photographic apparatus to the Knickerbocker Hospital all while making eyes at Thack & Barrow (played by Clive Owen & Jeremy Bobb). This Steven Soderbergh series is a bloody good stab at 1900 medicine but the focus is on the realities of life at the time for women and minorities.
Francine has been nominated for the Golden Selfie of the New York Burlesque Festival’s Golden Pasties Awards! NOW IT’S TIME TO VOTE! Please vote for Francine – competition is heavy and the finalists are warming up their Instagram filters in each corner. Watch out for some serious PHOTO BOMBING!!!
I am thrilled to be performing in this year’s New York Burlesque Festival which gives each performer an opportunity to win GOLD! Golden Pasties, that is! This fun and silly competition is still a huge honor to folks in the burlesque world and I hope you’ll take a moment to nominate your favorite performers here! Please consider me for any categories that you think I am qualified for. I think I have a shot at the Rockette Award (see my high kick in The Immigrant with Joaquin Phoenix above), the Hot Buns Award, I Woke Up Like This and the Golden Selfie! In case you didn’t know I take a quite a few of my own burlesque portraits and I have been taking selfies before they were called selfies. You only have until Aug 29th to make your nominations so do it now!
Francine has joined the chorus line of I’ll Say She Is – a Marx Brothers musical comedy revue from 1924. Come see Melody Jane, Groucho and a bevy of some of the finest showgirls your heart could ever desire. There’ll be dancing, singing, fabulous costume changes and lots of laughs. This revival debuts at Fringe NYC on Sunday, August 10th. There are only five performances in the month of August so get your tickets now!
New York Burlesque Festival is set for September 25-28, 2014 – more information here!
My first paid job in New York City was as a popcorn girl at the Angelika. This Friday, May 16th, The Immigrant, opens at the Angelika Film Center and you can see me in it as The Cossack! Get your tickets now!
The Immigrant , starring Marion Cotillard, Joaquin Phoenix & Jeremy Renner opens in NY & LA! Directed by auteur James Gray, this film takes place in a 1921 burlesque club and features some of NYC’s top burlesque performers: RunAround Sue, Ruby Valentine, Boo Boo Darlin’, Tansy, Legs Malone, DeeDee Luxe & Francine “The Lucid Dream”. Be the first in line to see this haunting tale!
We are nearing the end of Twin Peaks Tuesdays at The Exley for this winter. Enjoy the usual dose of Twin Peaks trivia, games, prizes, boozy coffee, free donuts from Peter Pan and burlesque from The Pink room David Lynch Burlesque. March 11th we will feature the season finale and then on March 18th we will end the series with Fire Walk With Me!
2013 was a whirlwind of a year! It was a tough one for sure but when I reflect back on everything that happened, it was still at times pretty magical. The media was good to me - I was on the Today Show with Bobby Thomas, received mentions in Rolling Stone Italia, Daily News, Time Out New York & The New York Times! I did some big shows and a lot of little ones. The little ones were often the most exciting! In 2013 I had a chance to perform for Lady Gaga& Donatella Versace in a very intimate setting – I also got up close and personal with supermodel Kate Upton at the Slipper Room!
Just when I thought things were getting dull I had an opportunity to see myself as “The Cossack” on the big screen at the New York Film Festival in The Immigrant by James Gray. The film has been released in France and I hope it will premiere in the United States this spring! The Wolf of Wall Street just opened – I haven’t seen it yet but if you see a redheaded baton twirler in it, that’s me! I was also thrilled to have the chance to work closely with filmmaker Steven Soderbergh on his new project, The Knick. Look for me on the little screen as “Evelyn”!
Of course, in between all the excitement I enjoyed spending time with all my burlesque friends on and off the stage. As always, The New York Burlesque Festival was a blast. The Miss Coney Island Pageant was insanely fun and an honor to be part of. I got to see the NYC Halloween Parade from a new perspective this year; walking alongside Kelly Ripa! The Pink Room: David Lynch Burlesque is still going strong. I never imagined that a little show that started with Twin Peaks Burlesque would become such a huge thing, never mind last for more than a couple years.
2013 really was a struggle in many ways but looking back puts it in perspective. There will be lots of challenges in 2014 but I am beginning to look forward to them because it is an opportunity to grow as a performer, as a producer, and as a human being. Wishing all of you much luck, happiness and prosperity in the new year!