Arts and Entertainment

A saucy show debuts at the Open Space

Broadway diva Rebecca Spencer  -  Ted Keegan Photo
Broadway diva Rebecca Spencer
— image credit: Ted Keegan Photo

The naughty and sophisticated charms of burlesque are coming to the Island on Saturday, when an all-star ensemble appears in “Burlesco Notturno,” a variety show at Open Space for Arts & Community.

The show, which is being billed as a “sexy, saucy soiree,” is the creation of Open Space founder and UMO Ensemble member Janet McAlpin, who will appear as Mme X, one of Burlesco Notturno’s co-hosts. It’s the first in a series of burlesque shows she plans to bring to the Island. 

McAlpin has hosted burlesque shows for the Moisture Festival for the past eight years, and she says she loves almost everything about the art form.

“It’s sparkly and pretty, and it has a lighthearted wittiness to it, as well as incredible anticipation,” she said. “I love the atmosphere that is created by the burlesque dancers and their relationship with the audience. It’s a feeling almost like Christmas morning, wondering what present you’re going to get, and then it literally unwraps.” 

For “Burlesco Notturno,” McAlpin has brought together an ensemble of performers she called the “crème de la crème” of Seattle’s vibrant burlesque scene. 

Kevin Kent, one of Teatro ZinZanni’s founding stars and a former Islander, will join McAlpin as co-host of the show. 

The cast of “Burlesco Notturno” will also include Broadway diva Rebecca Spencer.  

Spencer, another former Islander, is a veteran performer with a sparkling resume that includes dozens of high-profile roles and shows. She recently co-starred in the Hal Prince-directed “Phantom, The Las Vegas Spectacular,” and was also an original Broadway cast member of “Jekyll & Hyde.” She currently crisscrosses the country performing an award-winning cabaret act. 

The show will also include an appearance by well-known Island aerialist Esther Edelman, who will performs with live accompaniment by cellist Jami Sieber, and the band, The Zebra Kings, will also take the stage.

Headlining the show will be two of Seattle’s hottest burlesque dancers, Inga Ingenue and Miss Indigo Blue. Both performers have appeared in shows all over the world and are instructors at Miss Indigo Blue’s Academy of Burlesque in Seattle, passing on their craft to a whole new generation of burlesque performers. 

McAlpin raved about the fan dances that Inga Ingenue and Miss Indigo Blue will perform on Saturday.

“There’s nothing that is not going to be over-the-top fantastic about this night,” she said. “It’s going to be one of the best grown-up nights out you could ever have on Vashon.”


“Burlesco Notturno” will be performed at 8 p.m. Saturday, May 21, at Open Space for Arts & Community. Tickets, $20, are on sale at Books by the Way, Vashon Bookshop and The show is for ages 21 and older.




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