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Prague Burlesque returns with Supersonic Women

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When David Jahn unveiled his first installment of the Prague Burlesque in fall 2007, it wasn’t just a career milestone for the filmmaker and musician. The show was also Prague’s first burlesque performance in more than a century.

Now an internationally-touring troupe, the famed Prague Burlesque continues to make waves in Prague’s art scene. Its newest season, Supersonic Women, begins Friday, October 4.

Though Jahn is keeping the exact storyline under wraps, he told us the show will transport guests from baroque atmospheres all the way to the heavens above, where he promises the women will combat the skies to break the sound barrier. The show stars Miss Cool Cat, Lady Mousellyca, Coca Valente and Hayley The Strange, along with Jahn’s own onstage persona, MC Sonny Vargas—plus the Ritzy Dancers.

“People shouldn’t miss their chance to see the most exquisite burlesque show in Prague,” Jahn continued, adding that “special guests” from around the world are already booked for select nights.

The first burlesque performances sprung up in the Czech Republic at the turn of the 19th century, though the word itself has been used to describe parodies and similar art imitations since the 1500s. A resurgence began brewing in Europe and North America in the 1990s, and cities like Berlin and New York have since caught onto the glitz, glamour and tease of burlesque.

But the last burlesque show to hit Prague (before Jahn’s troupe, that is) took place in 1910, and it wasn’t until Prague Burlesque that a revival took off in the Czech Republic.

It’s safe to say theatre comes naturally to Jahn, a former student of Prague’s Academy of Fine Arts who grew up with two opera singers for grandparents. Later on, he was inspired by American neo-burlesque star Dita Von Teese as well as the Velvet Hammer Burlesque, a Los Angeles-based revival troupe founded by Michelle Carr in the ‘90s.

With a wild group of performers from across Europe, Jahn and his troupe have managed to singlehandedly turn Prague into a burlesque capital. Their shows aren’t for the faint of heart—expect tassel-adorned nipple pasties, conveniently-placed feathers, and larger-than-life martini glasses made for swimming.

But burlesque isn’t the same as straight striptease, though confusing the two is a common mistake known to irk theatre geeks. Like other burlesque enthusiasts, Jahn aims for the artistic side of eroticism, celebrating fantasy instead of hiding it. Many would be surprised to know that burlesque has its origins in classical literature: the term has been used to characterize the parody works of writers from Chaucer to Shakespeare.

Nowadays, burlesque performances in Prague and elsewhere combine dancing and singing with elaborate costumes that often disappear, piece by piece, by the end of the night.

“We live for this magical moment…to see happy people, relaxing and sharing their experience together with us,” Prague Burlesque’s mission statement reads. “We want to pull them out of stereotypes and let them be carried away by erotic beauty and fantasies.”

Doors open: 20.00
Show start: 21:30
After party: DJ Love Decoder
Ticket at the door: 690 CZK

For tickets in advance, visit www.leroyal.cz

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