Jul 162012

One thing summer time always brings is street performers and July 2012 has been no exception. An evening walk or a drive through the highlands can often provide plenty of unexpected entertainment.

As the sun drops down, the streetlights become spotlights on the simple concrete stage we commonly call a sidewalk. There is no schedule, elaborate stage props, bright lights or billboard signs to announce the presence of local street performers. In some cases, they just stop, drop and entertain because they enjoy performing for passing crowds. Sometimes they just enjoy performing for themselves. To be honest, it is often the latter I find more entertaining as they are truly at one with their gift.

In July and August, the street becomes a live gallery with a new sound or step every few blocks. From one moment to the next, you may hear an old blues harp reminiscent of the bayou or a cool old cat filling the air with jazzy melodies, thinking back to days long gone.

Sometimes friends cross paths and gather to play hand drums, flutes or guitars. Their melodies often carry positive energy with tribal beats and wandering rhythms. Occasionally someone might even sing or chant a few lines. They all just get lost in the mood and become mesmerized in the moment.

It is not uncommon to see a casually clad belly dancer moving gracefully among the passersby, or swirling between musicians just for fun. Hooley Hooper’s are occasionally spotted near certain establishments in the Highlands too. They tend to play like children twirling about their sparkling hoops, yet they do so with the grace of a cat.

I’ve even seen the occasional break dancer spinning in a parking lot… which though amusing, actually looked painful. There are also those on the streets that cannot dance…at all… yet they do. These brief but disturbing images are usually caught in passing while stifling a giggle.

The Highlands also has its share of buskers, who can be any of the above. The difference is Buskers have fun, gracefully accept tips and have a secret, but traditional bardic code. Apologies, as I can say no more of it.

Street performers can be dancers, guitarists, drummers, or clowns. It doesn’t matter as long as their having fun and people around them are moved by their energy.  These modern day bards can often lift or lower someone’s mood in a matter of seconds with a well-played note.

Street Bards or Buskers may not be on a stage in a club, but they don’t require one. In some ways they are the true independents, free spirits that still feel what they do and don’t play by a set schedule. Next time you see a bard along the street, take a moment and check it out. You may find yourself waking up to a world you never knew existed.


Upcoming events:

August 9th, 10th and 11th Va Va Va Vittles at Headliners located at 1386 Lexington Rd.

Feb 142012

It is not uncommon for men… and some women to desire and appreciate the company of a Vixen, especially for a Valentines celebration. Va Va Vixens are one of Louisville’s Burlesque entertainment groups, and they are literally making headlines at Headliners.

On February 4th, Headliners had a sold out show with lookers on enjoying an entire evening of nothing but Vixens during the opening night of Va Va Valentine. This was the first of a series of shows that Headliners be hosting, starring the Va Va Vixens. These performers combine
traditional Burlesque, with some outrageously entertaining twists.

Now when you think Burlesque, some people picture the movie that Cher starred in a few years ago. Va Va Vixens Burlesque takes the traditional form, then mixes things up a bit with a touch of Vaudeville and a circus style that you won’t soon forget. There is glitter, glam, good music, and sex appeal all combined into an evening of hypnotic entertainment that is sure to make you want to come back again.

One of the Vixens walks around on stilts, welcoming viewers and sprinkling them with glitter. She is much like a fey that you’d expect to give you a light dusting of fairy dust. Now, some of the guys may not appreciate the sparkle they get, but they’ll definitely enjoy the view of the well balanced lady that is going to have them shaking that glitter out of their clothes for a few days.

The show started out with the Vixens performing classic hits by renowned artists like Etta James, truly setting the mood for the night. The evening became more intense when the aerial artists took the stage including Eva Destruction. Seeing a Vixen wrapped in silks, dangling gracefully above the crowd got everyone’s attention. Kenya Kissme is an amazing knife twirler that brings back memories of carnival jugglers while adding a ‘hint’ of danger and providing more sex appeal. Veruca Vulcano debuted playing a lyra while dangling from a hoop like an exotic bird without the gilded cage.

The enticing Lady Chameleon did a somewhat witchy and ritualistic performance in a hooded cape, but she was not along on the stage. She soothes the serpent during her act, as her pet snake was her partner during her time on the stage. She also had an entourage of belly dancers twirling and dancing around her truly providing completion to her exotic performance.

Brooke and Shawn Slone add a touch of Vaudeville to the show running around in pajamas for a bit of comedic relief. However, they go into a dream sequence that brings the Vixens out as they role-play inner fantasies with steamy scenes.

Lisa Frye is the coordinator for the Vixens. Props should definitely go out to her for all the hard work she is putting into organizing these unbelievable performances. It takes a lot of effort to find all those amazing costumes, find just the right music and coordinate all the performers. Lisa knows how to put together an evening that will keep the crowd enticed and entertained for hours without having one dull moment.

If you missed the performance on February 4th, you can still catch the Vixens at Headliners. They will have encore shows on Fridays and Saturdays up to February 18th.  You can get tickets in advance for $20. Front row tables and VIP seating are available for $30 each. This is a show that is interactive, entertaining and combines just the right amount of sexy and classy. You won’t want to miss an opportunity to experience this unique form of Burlesque.