Watch the behind-the-scenes fun at Duane Park:
After over a year of strictly online, distanced entertainment, the burlesque scene in New York City is back-- and it’s as fiery and flashy as ever. Duane Park hosts a dinner-and-a-show experience like no other, full of dancers who are as beautiful as they are talented.
Honeysuckle’s own Sam Long and Ronit Pinto attended one of Duane Park’s first live performances post-lockdown and went backstage for an intimate glimpse at the burlesque performers’ pre-show process.
“The process is everything,” says Mia Preisser, known as Mia the MVP, a dancer and producer who’s been performing at Duane Park for years. “We’re all in here, getting mentally ready, physically ready, doing our makeup and hair, and what you get to see is what’s on the stage.”
Mia graced the stage many times throughout the night. With her hair short and slicked down in a 1920s style, she performed in a glitzy orange ensemble complete with a feather boa, a sleek, sexy black gown, and even gave a banana-skirt tribute to the legendary Josephine Baker.
The sexy old-school vaudeville vibe is palpable all throughout the swanky establishment. Burlesque star Pearls Daily embodies that old-Hollywood glamour in her pinup curls, glittering costumes, and high-spirited performances. Like many other artists at Duane Park, Pearls got her start in the burlesque industry as a pickup artist, or “kitten”, after years of dance and theater. (Kittens catch the clothes tossed off by the performers onstage, hence the phrase “pickup artist.”) Ten years later, she is a powerhouse in the burlesque world, and it’s clear to see why.
An evening at Duane Park is filled with dynamic, unbelievable performances, including a number of aerial artists, contortionists, and real life fire-eaters. Boredom and unoriginality are simply not allowed on the premises. Duane Park’s reopening is bringing more joy and excitement to the nightlife of New York City with sexy, old-school adult entertainment and a taste of sweet, sweet post-pandemic revelry.
Photos and video by Sam C. Long @samuelclemenslong