A sexy rendition of the mind-bending, mythical tale
Jasper McCann and Lily Verlaine, the dynamic duo who assembled that exciting burlesque Nutcracker I raved about in December are at it again, but this time they’ve outdone themselves; caterpillars and rabbits have never achieved such raunchy sex appeal. I’ve always been fascinated with Lewis Carroll’s charming tale, and playful use of language, and when I heard Alice in Wonderland was the setting for a burlesque performance, I couldn’t contain my excitement. I’ve been anxiously counting down the days until Through the Looking Glass finally hits the stage at the Triple Door, and wondering if the cheshire cat does a strip tease for Tweedledee and Tweedledum? Is Alice sweet or naughty? Is sultry Luminous Pariah going to be the Mad Hatter or the White Rabbit??
I was able to get a few of my questions answered after speaking with Jasper McCann about what’s in store for this year’s show. Now in it’s seventh season, check out what the charismatic host had to say about this curious and curiouser show, which might leave you feeling a little mad, or half so.
What is the most exciting aspect about this year’s rendition of Through the Looking Glass?
Jasper: Lily and I have always strived to continually refine and tweak our work as we move forward. Every time we put the show on stage we try to make it better, and that often includes new material. We have some exciting new additions to the cast this year: Seattle’s own Luminous Pariah will be joining us to play the Cheshire Cat this year, and local musical theater actor Richard Peacock will be playing the role of Eat Me. Cookie Bellini, who plays Crystalina the Snowflake in Land Of The Sweets has signed on as a Chandelier, as well as local dancer Thomas Phelan, so expect to see more dancing from the golden ones this year.
How has the show evolved over the course of seven seasons?
J: In the beginning, even though we started out with the “show within a show” format and had more speaking roles and a really different framework than any other burlesque shows at that time, (to my knowledge, Alice is the first burlesque show in Seattle to employ a “story” format) the “show within a show” was still basically a revue. The show has become a stronger and stronger ensemble effort every year as the veteran members of the cast continue to explore and mature in their roles, and we have also allowed ourselves to explore some of the darker aspects of the source material, which is something we never would have done in the beginning.
What is your favorite aspect of working in this industry in Seattle?
J: I think the willingness of the audiences in Seattle to embrace our work (and burlesque in general) has been amazing. We are presenting work that is entertainment, but also is sometimes kitch, sometimes conceptual, sometimes lowbrow, and sometimes aspiring to high art… and people that come to our shows are willing to go on the ride with us. The accepting and open-minded nature of Seattle at-large has been one of the major factors for our success.
Anything that you’d like interested patrons to know before the show?
J: We’re looking forward to the best run of Alice yet. Also 2015 is the 150th anniversary of the original publication of Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland. Fans of burlesque, English Literature majors, dance lovers, and proponents of all things weird will have a great time at this show!
Don’t miss this quirky burlesque show at the Triple Door April 8-11, or it’s off with your head!