In a previous blog post, I wrote about Dita Von Teese’s first burlesque tour Strip, Strip, Hooray! and briefly touched upon her newest U.S. production The Copper Coupe. Well, she and her entourage just completed taking the show around the States and I went not once, but twice! It was a must since she will not be touring stateside for the next two years.
With Dita Von Teese & The Copper Coupe, the queen of burlesque teamed up with Absolut Elyx to put on one of her best spectacles yet. She introduced new numbers, costumes and music that included tributes to George Michael, Amy Winehouse and Prince. For those curious as to what a copper coupe is (also known as a champagne saucer), it is a stemmed glass with a broad, shallow bowl. So, let’s raise a glass and toast to this savory look at her latest revue.
On night one, I attended her show in Riverside, California, at the Fox Performing Arts Center, a theater that dates to 1929 and still retains much of its historic elegance. This was a seated venue that allowed me to recline and enjoy the view. The second evening she performed at the House of Blues in Anaheim, California, a very different environment from the theatre. My husband and I always opt for standing room tickets when she performs here to get as close to the stage as possible, and boy did we! Both presentations were fantastic.
Johnny McGovern was the fabulous host for the night and he looked quite dapper in his bow tie, black and white suit, Swarovski crystal corsage and huge fan, which he would whip out after each act. When he introduced Dita’s opening number, everyone was brimming with excitement. The curtains rose and there was Von Teese in an enormous oyster, dripping in jewels like a dazzling pearl. She looked like Aphrodite emerging from the ocean. She swayed and undressed to a 1930s-sounding jazz tune. Suddenly a giant cream-colored balloon appeared, and she playfully bounced it around stage. At the closing, a myriad of balloons rained down from the ceiling with some even making their way out to the audience. The act paid homage to burlesque icon Sally Rand’s bubble dance.
Her next number was a song and dance performance with the gentlemen of her Vontorage titled “Lazy.” Those who’ve seen Marilyn Monroe in “There’s No Business Like Show Business” will be familiar with this routine. Dita’s version is of course a bit more titillating, but still classy. She performed this in 2006 at the Crazy Horse Paris. It was such fun to see and she makes lazy look so sexy!
My favorite act was, hands down, her fetish-inspired number “Lipteese.” Although Dita balances the glamour girl with the femme fatale, her previous shows didn’t include a bondage theme. She included this risqué act in her 2017 New Year’s Eve event and I was so excited she revived it for this tour.
Bright strobe lights shot out from the stage and Dita was standing garbed in sleek, black PVC attire that included a tightly laced corset and skirt, thigh-high buttoned boots with red soles by Christian Louboutin and a long, dark-as-night boa. The speakers blared a remix of her song “Bird of Prey.” The entire cast was featured in this number, making it extra special to watch. All wore fetish-inspired outfits and masks. Dita then made her way atop a mechanical red lipstick controlled by Ginger Valentine. She straddled it while the track “Lipteese” played. And, as if it couldn’t get any better, glitter poured down at the end.
The finale featured the brilliant copper coupe, which like her martini and champagne acts, ends with her splashing and spinning around in a large cocktail glass.
Of course, I cannot go without mentioning the other fantastic performers that toured with Dita. They include nipple tassel-twirling pro Dirty Martini; Texan sweetheart Ginger Valentine; boylesque star Jett Adore; Playboy model Gia Genevieve; Australian dancer Zelia Rose and The Vontourage Alek Palinski and Elio Martinez. Such a talented troupe that delivered unforgettable and top-notch performances.
Although I’ve seen Dita Von Teese perform several times, I never tire watching her live, even if it is the same show. Each time always promises something different and sensational. I’m a bit glum that it’ll be two years before she does another performance in the U.S., but maybe that just means I should make my way to Europe to see her!
On the night of the first show I attended, I purchased the official Dita Von Teese & The Copper Coupe program and in it, the star reflects upon her career in burlesque. I’ll leave you with some inspiring words from Miss Von Teese:
What I love about modern burlesque is that it’s beginning to feel like we can have it all, so to speak; we can reconcile being sex goddesses and feminists. We can respect each other’s individual boundaries, and support the choices of others even if we wouldn’t make those choices for ourselves. To me, that’s what it means to be a modern-day feminist.
If you’re in Europe, don’t miss the Art of the Teese tour this fall. You can find tickets here.
For a look back at Dita Von Teese’s first tour, read “A Night with Dita Von Teese.”