We’re looking back at past competitors and see how they took on the budget burlesque competition.
Emmeline Spankhurts, NSW
Emmeline Spankhurts is a Sydney based burlesque performer who competed in the 2020 DIY BurlesKoala competition. She describes her usual burlesque style as “Neo Burlesque.” I asked Emmeline about her experiences competing in the 2020 DIY BurlesKoala Competition.
Why did you enter DIY BurlesKoala?
ES: After 4 years of performing I thought it was time to enter a competition to test my performance style and costume creation on a budget
Where did the inspiration for your act come from?
ES: As an older performer I was inspired by the idea of throwing off the trappings and facade of youths and embracing the next phase of my life.
What was the biggest challenge you faced in creating your DIY act?
Creating an act during the start of the COVID-19 pandemic was a challenge to maintain momentum and commit my time and energy to creating the choreography and costume.
What was the biggest achievement or win you had in creating your DIY act?
It was a delightful surprise to get to kneeling on the floor and get back up again without faceplanting off the stage.
What was your favourite aspect of competing in DIY BurlesKoala?
It was fabulous to meet the Sydney and Canberra performers back stage for our leg of the competition. The chat comments through the online show was lots of fun.
If you were to enter again, what would you do differently?
I’d probably manage my time better and not leave so much until the last couple of weeks. I obviously didn’t take Lady Hart’s advice.
What advice would you give someone considering entering?
Do it! It’s a fabulous challenge for new and seasoned performers to explore what you can do on a budget to create an act that the audience engages with.
Have you performed your DIY act again, and if so, where/ when? If not, do you hope too?
I was supposed to perform it again in July except COVID-19 struck again to stop live performance. I’m hoping to perform it again very soon.
Have you since upgraded your DIY act? If so, what changes have you made? If not, are there changes and upgrades you plan to make?
I’ve invested in adding more of the larger and smaller leaves to the costume pieces to enhance the colour palette. I bought some proper pants. The ones I had kept falling down, which is a hazard for me and the audience.
What is one DIY trick, skill or experience you learned/ had during the creation of your act that you are most proud of?
It was all about time management, planning and rehearse, rehearse, rehearse. I knew these are important and it was rewarding to see the good results of spending more time than I usually have.
I can’t wait to be able to travel around Australia and see my fellow competitors in person after seeing them online.
DIY BurlesKoala 2022
Emmeline will be competing once again in the DIY BurlesKoala 2022 competition twill be held on Saturday 3 December 2022 at Metro Arts, Brisbane. Tickets available now.