Thursday, May 28, 2009

More Red Hot Annie and Natasha Minsk

Red Hot Annie and Natasha Minsk had a few action packed days in Austin, TX recently. From flying out of the windy city early in the morning to shopping the great vintage shops in Austin to performing at the Texas Burlesque Festival. Below is a bit that Red Hot Annie wrote of their time down in the Lone Star State...

Natasha and I got up way early this morning to catch our 8:30am plane, and touched down in Austin around 11:20am. I’m glad there’s no time change!

We spent some time putting final touches on our costumes for The Big Night – the competition night at Texas Burlesque Fest! Natasha worked away at her “Material Girl” costume, and I continued to add sequins all over my gas tank for “Pit Stop.” We use this glue, E6000, which smells like permanent markers and death – and I couldn’t help but wonder if it was really a good idea to use this stuff while sitting in bed! Such are the limited comforts of traveling!

Around 7pm, we headed down to the bridge on Congress to see the bats! We’d heard from a number of sources about how amazing it was. We ended up getting there pretty early, and we had to wait sort of a long time before the bats came out – but when they did…Wow! We expected a minute or two of bats flying out, but they must have been coming out for 10-15 minutes in beautiful ribbons. And in our spot, down by the river, the bats were actually flying right over our heads. Frightening, but worth it!

We had a delicious dinner at BD Rileys on 6th, and headed back to the hotel with a bottle of wine for some much needed sleep.

The next morning, we wandered around looking for places to shop! After stumbling into a place with gorgeous $300 shirts, we decided we needed to find some nice vintage places we could afford!

We headed down to Emo’s to get a good look at the backstage area for the show! It’s a great outdoor venue, but some of the backstage parts were a little daunting at first – especially the catwalk between the stage and the dressing rooms.

We also took the time while at the venue to meet up with the girls from Jigglewatts at El Soy y La Luna for an early dinner and margaritas, as well as to check out the backstage area of for the show!

We didn’t have a lot of time to cool off before going back to Emo’s to watch the show, so we just chilled by the pool for a while, dipping our toes!

I have to say – those girls from Jigglewatts are super talented. We saw them perform later that night at the Texas Burlesque Fest, before they headed off to Dallas that evening for another show. Ruby Joule and Coco Lectric did amazing solos and even got together for a fan dance duet that knocked it out of the park.

There were a lot of really amazing acts at Texas Burlesque Fest on Friday, and we were glad to be in the audience watching on the first night! Always nice to know the girls you’ll be performing with the following night. We were thrilled to watch Chicago performer Viva La Muerte rock it out on stage.

The next day it was raining all morning. Big wet sloshy rain.

But we joined the performers and producers at an official brunch that morning, anyways! We sat with my friend Kayla, who would be performing with us that evening. Kayla and I go way back – we shot together about 5 years ago when she was still living in Milwaukee. It was nice to just sit and hang out with her!

We were back to Emos just in time for our “performer check in” where we found out that one of the dressing rooms had flooded, and the catwalk and steep stairs from the dressing rooms to the stage was precarious to start with! They draped a tarp over the open-air of the catwalk so we could get to the stage without getting wet! A relief!

We had a successful check-in, including an opportunity to run our acts on the stage before the audience showed up. I find those kinds of moments very relaxing – running an act onstage while the chairs are still empty.

Little did we know – it was a sell out show! Our acts went well, and the audience cheered us on like crazy. I was a little nervous about performing, which is a rarity for me these days – but being in front of a totally different audience can be a little daunting. Still, I think both of our acts went really well, and we can be proud!

We were happy when we found out that some of our friends and new acquaintances won awards at the festival, too! Kayla won for “Most Original”, Ruby Rocket won for “Most Comedic” and Renea La Roux won for “Best Costume” and could be heard backstage saying, “I like to sew!” in the most demure, adorable voice! They all deserved their acknowledgments, and we were glad to be there to celebrate with them!

We got to hang out and have a very early 3am breakfast at Magnolia with a couple great girls after the show.

We didn’t get back to our classy digs at La Quinta Inn until 5am! What a night!

I was relieved to get some sleep this morning, and easily sleep in until 1pm. How very rock star!

It was really important to us that we take some time to relax today, so we spent most of the rest of the day swimming and relaxing with our new friend, Cha Cha Velour.

We also joined Ruby Rocket at Maiko Sushi for a sushi dinner!

We then just relaxed by the pool for the rest of the day with some delicious treats from a local deli/bakery. I couldn’t help but wishing that one of the places we’d been able to go was Barton Springs. Everyone kept mentioning it, but we simply ran out of time to make it there! I’m sure there are a million other places in Austin that would have been fun and relaxing, but we had a great time!

And when we boarded the plane at 5:30pm, we couldn’t help but be glad we’d gotten up in time to finally enjoy La Quinta Inn’s continental breakfast – Texas shaped waffles!