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Germany - Burlesque is Back -

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(generated from captions) Berlin has long been known for its edgy music and theatre scene. The mere mention of the city conjures up images of the free-wheeling '20s and '30s of Marlene Deitrich, of cabaret, and of clubs where convention is left at the door. Now, Berlin is embracing a burlesque revival

led by sword swallowers, strippers and singing mermaids.

(Lou Reed sings) * In Berlin, by the wall, * you were 5 foot, 10 inches tall. * It was very nice... * DANA TUCKER: This is a city that I felt I could accomplish things in, that would be supportive and nurturing for a creative spirit. PIANO PLAYS 'BERLIN' Berlin is probably the most affordable city in western Europe and it's a Mecca for artists, musicians and everything - because you come here and you can afford to be a burlesque dancer and make one or two shows a month. DAVID BOWIE'S 'HEROES' PLAYS Meet Dana Tucker, also known as 'Tallulah Freeway'.

A Canadian, when she's not working her bar job, Dana's a burlesque dancer.

If you approach somebody and you ask what do you do and they say I'm a guitar player or a painter or a photographer, in Canada the automatic response would be,

"No. What do you really do? What do you do to afford this?" But in Berlin it's just completely accepted. Old-style burlesque is back - and Dana's part of a revival which is putting the tease back into stripping. Nine months ago she packed up her Wild Rose review in Edmonton

for the bright lights of Berlin. Glamourized in films like 'Cabaret', it was in the 1920s and '30s that Berlin gained its reputation as a city where anything goes. In these anarchic and economically desperate times leading to the rise of Hitler, artistic and sexual freedom exploded before the black curtain of Nazism fell. (Big band plays) Today, Berlin is showing plenty of its old form and for performers like Dana its a natural home. Berlin has a big tradition in cabaret and showgirls so I'm sure it's been around forever actually. And do Berliners still like that style of performance? Yeah, totally. Yeah, for sure. I mean, who wouldn't?

And now ladies and gentlemen, the fabulous Tallulah Freeway from Canada. Wolfgang Sinhart is the manager of White-Trash Fast Food, one of the city's most popular clubs and one of the venues Dana performs in. (Dana sings 'Big Spender') Oh, it's incredibly glamourous. In any art form I think people develop a certain style and I think she has her natural style - when she appears on stage you gotta watch. It's... (Band plays rockabilly) the White Trash again tonight Dana is performing at

a prop for the show. and is out and about looking for about this neighbourhood, It's one of the great things

that happens every Sunday. is the Moritzplatz flea market of friends. You just run into all sorts a lazy Sunday afternoon, It's the gathering place to have drink coffee, to catch up. Dana discovers some opera gloves, In amongst the bric-a-brac, to take off. the sort that take a long time and there are many of us out there, To the unitiated, associated with strippers. the word burlesque is often Is that what it's all about? what it's all about. DANA: It's definitely not that we have sort of forgotten It's a style of entertainment in this society, in this generation, and so immediate. where everything is so accessible with an element of surprise, This is an entertainment of what's going to happen next with the unknown, with a little bit be able to get all of. or what you want you may not of her Wild Rose review In keeping with Dana's vision part vaudaville, as a part striptease, part carnival affair, a Russian sword swallower she's teamed up the beautiful Jewels, from St Petersberg. where you try it and you try it It works in a very funny way feather and you try with toothbrush and you try it - and you try with and months on end and you do this for weeks with a sword and then you start trying here and it only goes till about it goes and you get so shocked. and then one day all of a sudden of only three women sword swallowers Is it true that you are one in the world? I swear. Yeah, it's true. How do you know that? Because we killed the other five. It's fucking sharp. during rehearsals, But as we discovered is no laughing matter. sword swallowing It's too sharp.

her sword, While Jewels went off to blunt Lalavox, the singing mermaid,

for tonight's show. ran through her number how sweet it would seem... * (Sings) * Way down by the stream, the framework of burlesque. LALAVOX: I think I fit well within as the mermaid, When I first performed never to speak English. I made a point So I had a mermaid speak on stage. What's mermaid speak? trrrr, treeeeeooop. It's sort of like, you belong to little old man... * (Sings) But tonight ROCK MUSIC PLAYS for the neighbours? Can you close the front door and Dana is in her apartment It's a few hours before showtime to her make-up. putting the finishing touches Ready to go on stage? Yeah, getting there. Are you nervous? Now 'Tulullah's comE out. No - not nervous anymore. preparation, the band strikes up And finally, after all the and the show begins. of female sexuality There's an awareness bring out there, that we're trying to in every state and form. an acceptance of women BAND PLAYS something that's sleazy or dirty Sexuality doesn't have to be but that it can be enjoyed and playful. and it can be empowering and fun BAND PLAYS AND CROWD CHEERS a piece of my life, Berlin is definitely the experiences that shape people. a piece of my history in all back on when I'm old and say This is something that I can look a burlesque career in Berlin, I was young and I had in the world. the most glamorous city