Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Facebook - The Very Best In Social Correctness

In their infinite wisdom ...  The watchdogs at Facebook have decided that the entertainment provided by the Belmont Burlesque is simply too ADULT in nature.  Something had to be done about this horrible corruption of the standards of Chicago ...  Illinois ...  Wisconsin ...  Indiana ...  North America in general.

So Facebook has informed the Dancers, Comics and Magicians of Belmont Burlesque that their page is no longer allowed to promote their monthly shows.

For clear and compelling evidence of the vile and disgusting trash that Belmont  Burlesque has been listing on Facebook ...  Please see the picture below.

As you can plainly see ...  Pretty girls are being portrayed as the Sugar Babies of Ice Cold and Unfeeling Men who only want to hold them in their laps and hear them whisper dirty notions.

Something had to be done about this immediately.

I applaud Facebook for upholding the Incredibly High and Completely Unbiased moral standards we've all come to rely on.

Travis Clemmons

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Showbiz Interview: Serenna Starr

In the not too distant past, I satirically described Serenna Starr as the "Love Child of Jane Mansfield and a can of Minwax China Red.  The people who know her well did not even think of trying to disagree with me.

                    The Hair
                                                  The Face
                                                                                The Curves
                                                                                                              The Personality

All of these qualities are so delightfully distinctive ...  The probably should be trademarked.

How did you come up with the name "Serenna Starr"?

Serenna Starr:

I'm a sucker for alliteration, and I wanted something that would put a smile on my face. So Serenna comes from the "serenity now!" Episode of Seinfeld.

Starr comes from the burlesque performer Blaze Starr (another fiery redhead) and Hedy Jo Starr (who happened to be a trans burlesque sensation, but more applicably was an incredible costumer).

Since I'm a fiery redhead, an awesome seamstress, and it all fit alliteratively ... I thought it fitting!

So basically no matter how the dj or emcee says my name when I'm announced for stage, I always hear George Costanza's dad yelling "serenity now!"


Getting the "Girl Watcher" questions out of the way ...

How tall are you?

Serenna Starr:
5'6"of awesome

And so darn modest about it (wink)

And what is the shoe size?

Serenna Starr:

Eye Color?

Serenna Starr:
Greenish Hazely

Is the hair usually kept that rich deep red with the burgundy tones? Or do you jump around a bit while still staying in the Red Zone?

Serenna Starr:
I jump around a bit.

I'll go from strawberry blonde to something richer based on season and whim. I went brunette earlier this year.

I don't know what I was thinking.

So ... Red does seem to be your True Faith?

Serenna Starr:
I was born a strawberry head.

My wife and I have the opinion that certain women look sexier on the "Slightly Robust" side of the equation. You fall into that category for us.

But how do you personally define when your body looks "Right"?

Serenna Starr:
I look fondly back to the days when I was a size 6 and mostly wish I was that size again (35 lbs ago). I like myself a lot though, and I don't have to be held to any standard other than just what makes me happy. I do think about being a touring feature again, but I know it would take a ridiculous amount of work.

Being that this can be such a short lived profession, I don't feel particularly motivated.For the most part, I get very positive responses about my look (I adore being compared to Christina Hendricks).

You'll remember that I'd commented on how you could do a wicked interpretation of Saffron ... The character Christina had played on Firefly (wink).

Serenna Starr:
And you weren't the first person to tell me that (smile).

Which evolved first in your life ... The performing or the costume creation?

Serenna Starr:
The costuming completely came first. I've been sewing the majority of my life.

I was a timid creature. I was doing some costuming for some girls at a local Club. A Featured Dancer came along and commissioned a few pieces from me. Paid me with rubber checks.

The check was large and I had written against it already, so I was basically double in the hole. So I started dancing to pay the bills.

When you first began dancing for money ... How did you establish the nature of your routine?

Serenna Starr:
It kinda came about organically. Just enjoying the music and learning how to move. Later, I started developing shows. They were rough but they were enough to get me started traveling.

One day, things just kinda clicked, my feet started moving me in different ways, and voila! An actual dancer was born!

I will say that what made the biggest difference for me was exchanging my stripper platforms for regular 5" pumps.

Once I could feel the ground beneath my feet better, I was off and running!

Did you ever manage to get any resolution on the Kangaroo Check?

Serenna Starr:

I turned Ms. Bouncing Check and her agent (who was covering her tracks) into the States attorney. It took almost a year but I finally got paid

Nice to hear.

Which would be the better Birthday Gift ... Wicked High Heels, Exotic Ear Rings or a Gift Certificate to a Fabric Shop?

Serenna Starr:
All of the above

But if you had to make a choice?

Serenna Starr:
All of those things are equivalent to gifting me with porn.

I suppose, since I'm working on a new collection of sample gowns, the fabric store would be the better of the options.

But the same question could get a different response in a few months?

Serenna Starr:

It all depends on where my mind is at each moment.

Right now, the work and career side of my brain is engaged

Being a costumer ... And having to work with the intricacies of the human body ... What do you find most challenging about designing for women?

Serenna Starr:
Getting the cut of a short just right.

Pants are harder anyway but every lady's posterior varies. So there isn't one perfect way to do it so it's the most flattering universally.

I've managed to succeed more often than not though!

And men?

Serenna Starr:
I don't get to do a lot of design for fellas, but they are tons easier. Less curves and all of that.

When we first met ... You were one of the Judges for Grand Prix of Exotic Dance.

How did this evolve?

Serenna Starr:
I used to get booked as a feature entertainer into On The Border. They used to book much more frequently than they do now.

Back then ... I was at that club around twice a year for three or four years in a row. The crew and I became friends and even after my retirement we still keep in touch. So they think of me when it comes to judging as their non-biased, non-involved in the industry, ex feature with a Keen and honest eye.

At such a competition ... You're being called on to judge Stripper Style Stage Performing. How is that similar to a Burlesque Performance? How is it different?

Serenna Starr:
For me personally ... My strip show was the same as my burlesque show. What you saw at the Belmont Burlesque Halloween Show was actually one of my past feature shows... and costumes.

For me, there's nothing different. I know that's not how a majority of performers feel tho.

In my mind ... The difference between "stripper" and "burlesque performer" is the intent, and the frequent spreading of the legs.

A lot of Strippers kind of have those dead eyes and hate being on stage.

Performers, me in particular, hate the hustle and love to dance and entertain.

I've noticed some gals who seem to love the hustle. Almost seem to thrive on it. Have you crossed the path of many like these?

Serenna Starr:
Oh sure! And a part of me always wanted to be a little more like them.

I just can't stand being told no. I mean, we are all in it for the moolah, right? I admired the girls who could separate out a bit, make $1000+ a night and not sweat the rejection and the handful of people who were jerks.

What were the situations that caused you to say ... I can no longer be a dancer full time?

Serenna Starr:
I honestly caved under pressure to "grow up" and "establish my career before it's too late" etc.

I also had met what I believed at the time to be the love of my life, bought a house, and was really enjoying being at home. I started taking fewer bookings, then got offered less bookings too because I was calling my agents less.

There were sooooo many girls on the circuit at the time, and soooo many clubs not booking like they used to. So, all of us were fighting for the same jobs, new girls would get booked for cheaper.

I just didn't have the fight in me anymore. I worked a couple of local clubs, but the clientele just didn't buy into the kind of dancing I was doing. Or they weren't spending, or appreciative, or nice even.

So I took to managing clubs for a while. Being on the other side of things was actually really nice for a while.

So, I can honestly say that I have worked in every aspect of a Gentleman's Club. I have worked the door, bartended, waitressed, been the janitor, managed. I have even bounced people out before. I didn't feel I could be an effective manager unless I was good at each position that I was managing.

So ... If I were a promoter and I wanted to send you on a 3 month tour of several areas in the US and Canada.

What type of package would I need to offer?

Or would you simply say "No" unless it was a mass of diamonds on a plate?

Serenna Starr:

The rate is generally dependent upon how many days and how many shows.  A typical booking for me was a 4 day run that included 12 shows. Then I'd need a couple of days off to recover.

In order to give you an exact amount, I'd need to consult with a few girlfriends who are currently featured dancers.  But I can tell you that it would be several hundred for the week. Plus you'd pay for the hotel and you'd provide me with reasonable travel expenses.

If you watched your expenses ... What could you hope to pocket from that situation?

Serenna Starr:
Well, I would get to keep my tips and sell merchandise after the shows.

Depending upon the busy-ness of the club, sometimes that could bring in a few extra hundred an evening. Sometimes you just break even and come out with your paycheck intact.

Out of courtesy, I should be tipping your DJs, bar staff and floor staff. Then I have to pay a commission to the agent that got me the gig in the first place. I've been in a few places where I walked away with something like $4000 in a week, and others where I've come out of it close to empty handed.

There was the time when someone on staff stole my purse after the club had cashed my paycheck. That left me mad at humanity, since it was an inside job, and I was nearly stranded about 500 miles from home on Christmas Eve.


OK ... For an upcoming Saturday Evening ... You have 2 opportunities to attend an elegant cocktail party.

The first party involves you being invited because you are known as a Costumer and Performer. Numerous people will want to talk to you and get to know you better.

The second event involves you essentially being a businessman's arm candy for the evening. Your reason for being there would be to help him look good. And you'll have the opportunity to meet some very interesting people who are not in the entertainment industry.

Being able to choose only one invitation ... What would you consider to be the advantages and disadvantages of each opportunity?

Serenna Starr:
My tendency would be to go to the first.

I prefer people to get to know me. And although I have played the arm candy role in the past (and had fun with it) I am in a place in my life where I really love what I do, and love having opportunities to talk about it.

There is always that certain curiosity about opportunity #2. Which celebrity or other person of note might I miss out on seeing. But given the circumstances of our meeting, those people would likely only see me as cotton candy anyways.

And I hate being treated like fluff!

And for the party that you've chosen ... How are you going to be done up, in order to be really eye catching?

Serenna Starr:
In typical fashion...Perfect hair, perfect makeup, perfect presentation, well put together.

I've been very into the dresses they sell at the Betty Page store, and what they do for my figure. My wardrobe is nearly full of them. A cleavagey wiggle dress and a pair of sassy heels that would go for the win!

Where would the hem be in relation to the knees?

Serenna Starr:
Just at or a tiny bit below. Like the dresses I had on at the last Stripperfest.

Bare leg? Hose? Full Fashion stockings?

Serenna Starr:
Nearly always a bare leg.

I loooove back seam thigh high stockings with a Cuban heel, but a lot of my shoes don't jive with the Cuban.

And the stocking and garter belt combo doesn't always mix well with figure hugging outfits.

So ... Your Gentleman would have to buy you shoes for the evening? (wink)

Serenna Starr:

You and the wife and I need to go shopping sometime

Serenna Starr:

I've seen how your wife dresses. Are you sure your wallet is ready for the two of us?

Since the answer to that question is probably "No", I think I'll just hug you good bye and declare this interview completed.

Serenna Starr:
Smart man (wink).


Any photo holding a notation of Striptaculous has been supplied by Curtis Isom.  All other pictures were supplied by Serenna Star.  All rights belong to the individuals listed or to other photographers who have taken the photos.

Sincere thanks to Serenna and to Curtis.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Showbiz Interview: Moses Carroll

Moses Carroll is a gentleman, an entrepreneur, and a delightfully crazy person to spend an evening with. On the afternoon of October 29, I had the opportunity to conduct an in depth discussion with the fellow.

You're actively involved with 2 organizations ... MC Healthcare and Pole Dance America ... How did each situation evolve?

Moses Carroll:
MC Healthcare is a non-profit organization that I created in 2005 in an effort to promote healthy and more active lifestyles. When I began working in the fitness industry and saw the happiness that clients received from losing weight, playing sports or lowering their blood pressure I realized I wanted to be that bridge to education and motivation. Pole Dance America is a spin off of MCH. The first of 3 programs we are using to educate people on the benefits of living an active lifestyles.

So ... MC Healthcare is intended to be about more than just Pole Dancing?

Moses Carroll:
Yes, MCH's focus is on education and demonstration which leads to motivation and a desire to be successful. Plus it allows us to give a platform for those that want to show and be examples of what happens when you dedicate yourself to reaching a goal.

And does all this keep you on the road quite a bit?

Moses Carroll:
Yes, 6 to 8 months per year that I'm on the road.

The PDA Prelims are conducted like a season - just like football This allows us to promote across the country and get people excited about Pole Fitness

My wife (and a close friend of ours) have told me that they'd consider you to be a "Nice Catch".

Are you currently available? Or are you spoken for?

Moses Carroll:
I'm single.

The pole competitions have pretty much placed a halt to my dating life. Mainly because of the traveling and being around half naked women. What I've been told is "an issue”

I must admit it is hard cause all of them are nice, beautiful and talented. But I respect the positions we are ALL in and would hate to have a reputation as the dude that's having relations with a contestant... I love PDA & MCH to much to ruin it.

Most of the girls are really great and very sincere but there's always the concern that one might take my kindness for emotional comfort and intimacy.

Not asking you to name any names ... But have there been any club girls who have seemed determined to sink their hooks into you?

Moses Carroll:
You know, Ive been lucky not to have been in that situation.

I will say I'm often oblivious when women hit on me cause I'm not sure if they are really serious or testing the waters to see how far I they can take me.

Okay ... For all the adoring ladies who aren't in the industry ... And how tall are you?

Moses Carroll:
I'm a nice 6'1 of caramel goodness - LOL

And what qualities would cause you to be attracted to a woman?

Moses Carroll:
That a good question... So many qualities but in life you can only receive a few. So I will ask for - Goal setter and achiever, team player, trustworthy, affectionate and most important versatile.

Any habits or attitudes that are serious turn offs?

Moses Carroll:
Well, hmmmmm - sorry for taking so long... I had to think about that cause dealing with women is like playing chess. Cause when you think you making the right moves you might not be.

Attitudes will always be there. So understanding & better communication has to play a major role.

Habits – I take the good with the bad if she is the one I choose to be with. Now I will say I don't like complainers, bad memories, constant gossipers and women that don't know themselves. It takes a strong woman to deal with a man like me cause I'm a handful and you have to have a backbone.

You've met a girl that you really want to get to know better and you're trying to treat her to a really neat first date. What kinds of things would you consider?

Moses Carroll:
Hmmmm ... I enjoy cooking, so I would either invite her out to eat somewhere that I can prepare the food or invite her to my loft with the city skyline view.

Do a few things that will cater to her personality and will introduce her to my likes. And I do pay attention to the details of a woman so I will do things to please her – mentally & emotionally.

Other than on the lips ... What is your favorite "respectable spot" for kissing a girl? (I love my wife's legs and shoulders).

Moses Carroll:
The entire Back, Legs and Hips

Some guys want a girl to have a totally natural look. A few really get into the ones who have obviously had a lot of cosmetic surgery or who really go intense on the make up or hair dye or tattoos. What's your take on this?

Moses Carroll:
Natural beauty -- to me -- is wonderful. Tattoos, breast and glut implants are fine; if they are used to enhance. But if it takes over the original art of the human body - then its not the real person's natural beauty. It doesn't change the person - but it hides what I would like to be as my soul mate. But don't get me wrong – I will still love the woman.. Every way possible...

Where are you originally from?

Moses Carroll:
Born in Memphis, TN. Atlanta has been my home for 14 years.

How did you wind up in Atlanta?

Moses Carroll:
Was ready for a change, woke up on morning and said - I'm moving. Packed my bags and relocated,

I was raised in something fairly close to the Traditional Southern Christian Family. And even though I'm involved in several forms of "Adult Entertainment" ... I still have certain standards that I hold to and that I expect to see from people that I think of as friends.

How did your upbringing affect your adult life?

Moses Carroll:
Ohhhh boy... I'm very outspoken. I don't like people that play both side of the fence.

Well ... I try not to give attitude. But I'll do something like bow my head and pray before a meal (while in a restaurant) ... And certain people will act like "But I saw you in an adult club last night".

And I will simply tell them that I believe in God and I try to live a good and respectful life but I'm not a Prude.

Moses Carroll:
Thats great... cause I do the same... its the "Over The Top People" that get under my skin. We are all here to enjoy life but they condemn people for doing in public what they do in private. That's ridicules.

I know my mistakes and errors but I'm not going to bring others down to make myself seem perfect. Live and let live..

You and I think somewhat alike - if they don't like it or understand.. that's not our fault...

Thank you.

How many competitions have you judged?

Moses Carroll:

And what qualities are you looking for when you judge?

Moses Carroll:
Skills / Creativity / Stage Presence

Anything else you'd like to tell the readers?

Moses Carroll:
Find happiness in the things you love and never let life issues distract you. Enjoy every moment – cause its fun!!!

Sounds like a good comment to end on. Thank you very much.

Moses Carroll:
You're welcome.

Thanks you for chatting with me.

Love Peace and VO5!!!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Burlesque Review: The Villainous Plan 9 Affair

TO ---
Director Forbush

FROM ---
Agent D - 1071CCN

Recent Events In Chicago

Officially ... The building at 3914 North Clark Street is known as the Public House Theatre.

But if someone carefully does their research ... They might just stumble upon the truth. That this location actually serves as the meeting place for a Secret Society of True Believers. On the last Sunday of each Month, this seemingly nondescript establishment is the House of Worship for Chicagoland's Geek Orthodox.

The ceremonies they practice are steeped in Mystery and are almost as old as time itself. Throughout the ages, these activities have been known by different names in different societies. But by comparing at least a dozen different sources ... And drawing upon the various linguistic qualities of each ... I've been able to come up with what I believe is the most accurate North American English Translation.

While stationed here in the Great Lakes Sector ... I'd been informed that this society was in search of an Independent Observer and Translator. Someone who was fluent in both Geek and English ... And who could understand these strange and unusual rituals and explain them to the average Man and Woman on the street.

Using the alias of Travis Clemmons ... I immediately submitted my resume and was quickly contacted by Stella Cheeks, the High Priestess of Plan 9. She explained that the theme of their Late October Event would be the Nature of the Villain as He and She have existed in both History and Fiction.

Maybe it was the way Stella batted those long dark eyelashes as she smiled at me. Maybe it was those legs and hips and the way she knew how to saunter as she made her way through a room. Whatever it was ... I knew I needed to learn more about this woman and her band of followers. I figured some additional up close observation was the least I could do when National Security might possibly be at stake.

On the evening of Sunday, October 27 - 2013 ... I arrived at the Public House in my official identity of Clemmons. On my arm was a lovely escort named Karen. The two of us had made a habit of trading favors during the past few years.

Once inside the Theatre ... I found a convenient spot, readied my camera and began my surveillance. Whatever this group might be up to, I wanted to make sure I had the complete scoop on everything.

Hot Tawdry - Bella Canto - Marie Curiosity -  Stella Cheeks
Heckler interrupted the characters of Kitana, Doctor Horrible, Michelle Bachman & Darth Vader
as they were performing to Thriller.

My first actual clue that something nefarious might be in the making was when Stella (while dressed as a Darth Vader like Barbie Doll) used some sort of psychic mind control to silence a Heckler who'd obviously started drinking at least three days before the show began. If she and her followers had this type of insidious power, could any organization succeed in stopping them from achieving world domination? And as gorgeous as these women looked, would any man really want to try?

Within the first thirty minutes ... It became quite obvious that the members of this society were quite skilled in the practice of Striptotharsus.

                                        The ritualistic removal of ornamental clothing
                                        in a teasing manner which provides onlookers
                                        with a deep sense of euphoria and the overwhelming
                                        sensation of having been emotional cleansed.

Right This Way Robbie as Ice King (She's So Cold / Rolling Stones)

My initial cause for concern was their ability to subtly interweave secret coded messages into their routines while disguising this activity as humor. During the course of the evening ... There were numerous instances where the behavior of the individuals on stage would cause those in the audience to snicker, chuckle, cheer, guffaw and even break into outrageous laughter.

Hot Tawdry as a forlorn Doctor Frankenstein (Fix It / Cold Play)

What most aroused my interest ... As the evening went on ... Was the way in which these insidious geniuses combined elements of Conflict, Drama and Horror with Sensuality, Titillation and Erotica. Clearly this is part of some larger plot to work towards the complete unraveling of the nations morals and standards.

Marie Curieosity as Countess Bathory (Honest Mistake / Bravery)

Comedian:  Adam McAleavey

Having collated all the data that I managed to gather that evening ... And having run this information through at least seven different Translating or Decrypting systems ... It is obvious that there was a single overriding message woven into that evening's activities.

David  Hasselhoff  Is  On  To  Us

I have already contacted Agent Hoff and informed him that his cover has been compromised.  But frankly ...  I'll never understand how he managed to convince people he was an entertainer all these years.

Aly Oops & Stella Cheeks as the Doctor & the Master (Drumming Song / Florence and the Machine)

Bella & Ellie (Bloody Mary / GaGa)

In the meantime ... I am concerned about the fact that membership rolls of this society seem to be steadily increasing. In order to make sure that their activities are properly observed and cataloged, I feel that it is my solemn duty to attend even more of these rituals.

Somebody has to do this job. It might as well be me.


D - 1071CCN
Special  Agent  of  S.H.E.E.S.H.

My sincere apologies to any Plan 9 Performer that I have not mentioned in this review.  There was simply too much good material and I had to go for what I considered to be the Best of a Great Bunch.

Unless a photo is noted as "Travis Clemmons" ...  It is the property of the group or person being represented and is used here only for the purpose of writing this review.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Burlesque Review: Belmont Halloween Show

My lovely wife and I consider Serenna Star to be a good casual friend. While we don't know the lady incredibly well ... We have been seriously impressed by her on each occasion when her path has crossed ours.

On the evening of October 26 - 2013 ... The two of us made sure to be in the audience for Serenna's performance at the Belmont Burlesque Halloween Show. We had absolutely no idea of what she'd be performing. We simply knew that if this Lovely Evil Redhead was involved the show was guaranteed to be good.

To our pleasant surprise, everything about the evening quickly leapt above the position of "good" and kept soaring upwards from there.

For starters ... The Wit Theater is a marvelous venue for this type of presentation. Anyone hoping to put on a successful Burlesque Performance needs a well designed setting that brings a sense of intimacy to the event. The Wit does this perfectly, there simply isn't a bad seat in the house.

As the first dance performance of the evening ... Diva LaVida set the bar incredibly high. Her interpretation of "Chinese Ghost Story" was both chilling and erotic. Proof positive that what unsettles us can also bring a sense or erotic euphoria.

After Diva LaVida had almost made us feel like every bit of oxygen had been sucked from the room ... The Amazing Tomas walked onto the stage and brought it right back in.

I do have to say that I've not exactly been the biggest fan of Tomas. During the past few years, I've attended several shows where he was the "Featured Magician" and his style had generally left me feeling like things were just a bit flat. On this particular evening, the man's humor and slight of hand were perfectly on target. I wish him the best on building his act even better as time goes on.

A couple of acts later ... We finally had the opportunity to enjoy the work of Serenna Starr. And I have to say that her performance was most certainly worth the wait. A tormented and writhing interpretation of "They're Coming To Take Me Away" that managed to impact on a great many emotional buttons.

Touching   --   Humorous   --   Sad   --   Erotic   --   Psychotic   --   Sublime

And just when we thought things could not get any delightfully crazier ... Helena Handbasket sauntered onto the stage and showed us all an Angel of Death that many of the audience members would gladly have stood in line for the privilege of kissing. The woman put a spin on "Down In Hadestown" which was nothing less than Deliciously Wicked!

All of these elements (and a good many more, too numerous to mention) were expertly held together by the sly antics of Ms Pixie. The woman was truly sublime as a voluptuous Princess of Darkness with an unholy appreciation of Sweet Young Things.

The mark of a really good Variety Show is that it is able to strike a theme and then find ways to provide a numerous amount of intriguing variations and distortions. This show accomplished that task every step of the way.

My wife and I went to see a pretty girl dance. We wound up being treated to an uproarious feast of comedy, satire and exotic teasing.

I love it when I receive more than I'd bargained for!


And before I forget ... I want to hand a special shout out to Curtis Isom of Striptaculous.Com.

On Saturday evening, I was having camera problems (mostly caused by a loose nut behind the machine). After learning that I was in need of assistance, Curtis was quite helpful and provided many of the pictures that are shown in this article.

Travis Clemmons