by Mitchell Brown, Reporter
An entertainment soiree, complete with hula hoops, music, magic acts and dancing girls is set to take place in Warrensburg tonight.
The event is a performance at the Bay, located at 130 W. Pine St. in Warrenburg, by Kansas City burlesque troupe Cirque du Risque. They have performed at the Bay before, but this Friday will mark the start of what is to be a monthly gig, scheduled to happen the first Friday of every month.
The Bay is a bar that primarily caters to a live music crowd, and owner Ben Blevins said an overlap exists between fans of live music and those who would attend a burlesque performance.
“It’s easy to sell to our crowd because we get bands a lot,” Blevins said. “They (Cirque du Risque) aren’t a band, but there is the performance aspect of it.”
“We get a lot of people who are like what the hell is burlesque,” Blevins said. “But after they see the show they really understand.”
The word burlesque is defined as “an absurd or comically exaggerated imitation of something, especially in a literary or dramatic work” and “a variety show, typically including striptease.” Although burlesque performances often include the removing of articles of clothing or costume pieces, they do not include full nudity, as nipples are covered with pasties.
This vaudevillian form of entertainment has experienced a modern revival in the present Cirque du Risque is one troupe out of many.
Blevins said Cirque du Risque’has built a name and following among the denizens of Pine Street due to their numerous, yet sporadic performances at the Bay.
Blevins remarked that a working relationship now exists between his bar and Cirque du Risque. His reasons for inviting them back are multifaceted. He cited the comfort level of the performers, how succinct their routines are, that they seem to flow together and the party vibe they bring.
Blevins said he has never had any complaints about burlesque performances at the Bay, but he is aware that some people could have misconceptions about them.
“They are definitely not strippers,” he said. “They are performers. They are geared more towards the art crowd.”
“I think the negative connotations that come with is that they do dance seductively, but it’s all part of the show,” Blevins said. “It’s all for fun. It’s nothing anybody should be offended by.”
Blevins said the idea for a monthly performance was initially the idea of members of Cirque du Risque.
“They love performing in Warrensburg,” Blevins said. “They love the response Warrensburg gives.”