The Burlesque Handbook
By Jo Weldon

With a Foreword
By Margaret Cho

Publisher: HarperCollins/ItBooks
Release Date: June 2010
Two-Color. 272 Pages.

The Burlesque Handbook

NYSB Headmistress and Founder Jo Weldon wrote the first-ever book on performing burlesque!
Check it out on!

For less than the price of a burlesque workshop, you can get a handbook that teaches you classic moves, basic principles of fan dancing, concepts in costuming and makeup, how to make and twirl tasseled pasties, and how to get started performing! The book is fun for performers and non-performers, packed with quotes from burlesque legends of the 1940s and 1950s as well as neo-burlesque stars. Sourced from both original research and available literature, the book is also based on the author's decades backstage, where performers give each other the most useful tips and secrets!

"I love Jo because not only is she absolutely gorgeous, she is incredibly smart. She is a burlesque performer, teacher, historian, and photographer. She shows us our present while preserving our past."
Margaret Cho

"Jo has been a fantastic entertainer at Exotic World and a great inspiration to everyone at the Burlesque Hall of Fame. It's an honor to have her working with us and a thrill to have her on our stage!"
Dixie Evans, Founder of the Burlesque Hall of Fame

"Jo is a generous teacher whose enthusiasm and dedication to the art form shine through her every word and movement. She's also a burlesque force of nature, a performer who unapologetically embodies the classic tease alongside the edgiest neo-burlesque without a hint of contradiction."
Michelle Baldwin, Author of Burlesque and the New Bump N Grind

Table of Contents
Foreword by Margaret Cho
Introduction:A Lifetime of Discovering Burlesque and a Brief History of Bold Women
1 Inspiration: Opening the Curtain on Your Internal Theatre
Burlesque Movement
2 Classic Moves: The Old School Way
3 Pasties: They're Revolutionary [includes instructions on how to make and twirl tasseled pasties]
4 Fans: Your Fine Feathered Friends
Act Development
5 Music: The Basis of Every Successful Seduction
6 Costuming: Constructing Outfits for Deconstruction
7 Character: Getting Into It
Refining Performance
8 Makeup and Hair: You're Never Nude Up There
9 The Big Reveal: How to Get a Gimmick
10 Etiquette: How to Win Naked Friends and Influence Nude People
Take a Bow
11 Identity: What Makes You So Special
Appendices and Resources [includes a burlesque history timeline, reading recommendations, film recommendations, website recommendations, and worksheets]

The book is also scheduled to be available as a raffle prize during the Dangerous Curves Tour.

Check it out on!

We have compiled a huge amount of resources on our blog, including detailed interviews, tips and techniques, book and film reviews, and more! and we're adding to it all the time. Check it out!

Join the Facebook Fanpage for the latest news on the book and the book tour, beginning June 2010 in Las Vegas!

Jo Weldon Tour Dates:

May 27
Book Expo America
Autograph Session by Jo Weldon
Accompanied by Star Graduates of the New York School of Burlesque
Thursday, May 27, 2010
12:00PM - 12:30PM
Location: Table 16
Will sign: The Burlesque Handbook
Jacob Javits Center
655 West 34th Street 10001

May 28
Palace of Wonders
1210 H Street NE
Washington, DC 20002
Price: $10
Jonny Porkpie - the Burlesque Mayor of NY - proudly presents "The Burlesque Handbook" Book Party and Show - starring author and Headmistress of the award-winning New York School of Burlesque JO BOOBS!
This show is a rare opportunity and NOT to be missed!!!

June 1
Book Release Party
6-9 pm
Book available for sale and signing
Sales by Bluestockings Radical Bookstore
The Slipper Room
167 Orchard St at Stanton, 10002
Informal, Cash bar

June 2-7
Las Vegas
Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekender
Reigning Queen of Burlesque Pageant
Book Sales and Signing in BHOF Bazaar
Plus, With Indigo Blue:
Directing Classes with the Legends of Burlesque
Performing June 4

June 8, Los Angeles, Guest at Striptease Symposium
Lecture and Book Sales and Signing
See for details
June 9
Book sales and signing
Limited number of books available; feel free to bring books purchased elsewhere for signing
Upper Manhattan Lounge
3600 Highland Avenue
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
No Cover, Drink Specials, and Half off Appetizers Schedule
5-6pm Live Demo Burlesque Makeup - Eyelash & Glitter Lipstick
6-7pm Meet & Greet & Book Signing 7-8pm Live Demo Striptease
8-9pm Demo Tassel Twirling

June 11
Performing 3 numbers at Blue Moon Cabaret
A night of extravagance, elegance and glamour with a twist of humor and tease. Blue Moon Cabaret will titillate and tantalize you - with a world-class rotating cast of performers such as host Miss Indigo Blue, Lily Verlaine, Inga Ingenue, The Swedish Housewife and Author Jo "Boobs" Weldon, as well as other local burlesque celebrities. You won't find a show quite like this anywhere in the world.
June 12 The Pink Door Performing 2 numbers
June 13
Miss Indigo Blue's Academy of Burlesque
Two Classes:
The Official New York School of Burlesque Routine, as seen in The Burlesque Handbook!
Stripping Out of Street Clothes: Where Your Clothing is Your Choreography! Learn to tease with a hoodie, a ballgown, or even just sunglasses! of
7 pm
Naked Girls Reading Seattle
Theme: Evolution
West Hall, Oddfellows Building
10th and E Pine
Seattle, WA 98122

June 15, return to NYC, NYC for 4 weeks
Selection of performances and events:

June 26
Getting It Off
A unique class in striptease for play and pleasure
Includes champagne, snacks, atmosphere
And a 15% discount on Coco De Mer Merchandise
Class and Salon
Coco De Mer
July 1 NYC Storybook Burlesque Presents
The Burlesque Handbook
The Bowery Poetry Club
308 Bowery, NYC, 10 pm
A troupe formed by Jo's students produce an entire show based on the techniques in the book. Jo hosts and signs books.

July 8
Book Salon and Cocktails
Coco De Mer

July 10 and July 17
The Last Burlesque Show

July 11
Women of Experience Read Downtown
A Reading Series Co-Produced
By Jo Weldon and Heather Litteer
The Wild Project
195 East 3rd Street
New York, NY 10009

July 15
Reading, books available
In the Flesh Reading Series

July 21-25
Toronto, Canada
Performances, Classes, and Book Signing

August 6
Jo Produces
Strip Teas
An Evening of Explicit Teabagging and Infusions

July 26-39 Las Vegas Desiree Alliance Conference

August 14-30 Edinburgh Fringe Festival and Book Fair

September 17-19 New Orleans Burlesque Festival

October 1-3 New York Burlesque Festival

October 8 NewYork Comic Con

October 12 New York Public Library, 67th Street, NYC

October 14-17 BurlyCon

November UK International Disability Festival

December 3 Dallas TX

Classes at the New York School of Burlesque continue every week!

Publisher's Guide with Excerpts

"Jo is a legend in our time. She has equal parts passion for performance, dedication to teaching and a strong drive for preserving the history of burlesque and enriching its future. I love this gal on stage and off!"
Angie Pontani

"Jo Weldon is the gold-standard for New Burlesque. A learned burly-q historian, a skilled and gracious teacher, and a breathtaking, world-class performer, she’s everything you could want in a shimmy queen. I am proud to call her my friend, and unashamed to admit she’s my idol."
Lily Burana, author of Strip City: A Stripper's Farewell Journey Across America and head bombshell of Operation Bombshell: The Burlesque School for Military Wives

"When Jo performed at Exotic World, I’d never been so mesmerized by a woman simply sitting on a chair. That’s the mark of a true performer!"
Immodesty Blaize, Miss Exotic World 2007 and the UK’s Premier Burlesque Performer

"Jo is not only one of the most classically elegant dancers ever to grace the Slipper Room Stage, but in my humble opinion, she is also one of the sexiest performers I’ve ever known."
James Habacker, Artistic Director, The Slipper Room NYC

"Why she’s willing to make the secrets of her fantastic skills available to the public is beyond me, but if I were you, I’d buy this book quick, before she changes her mind."
Jonny Porkpie, author of The Corpse Wore Pasties, creator of Pinchbottom Burlesque

"I have a book on the way from HarperCollins/ItBooks called The Burlesque Handbook. It’s a book about how to perform burlesque as we do in the burlesque community of which I’m a part. Margaret Cho wrote the foreword, and I know her from working with her at the Burlesque Hall of Fame Pageant and later being in her variety and burlesque show The Sensuous Woman. She’s a wonderful, unapologetic, undomesticated, Renaissance woman, and a great example for women who need to take chances. She’s a *just do it!* kind of person, a very positive light in the world."
Jo Weldon, in an interview on CarnalNation.

Back cover copy:
“That’s Jo Weldon—and she’s perfect!” Leighton Meester, on the set of Gossip Girl
The Burlesque Handbook is the essential manual to understanding and performing both classic and neo-burlesque. Written by Jo “Boobs” Weldon, award-winning founder of the New York School of Burlesque, this guidebook provides step-by-step instructions on basic moves, provides worksheets for costuming and music selection, and gives backstage insight from one of the most established and respected stars of the burlesque scene. Also here are insider tips from dozens of performers whose combined careers span six decades and an illustrated section on how to make and twirl tasseled pasties!
The book features easy-to-follow suggestions and exercises for developing stage-worthy confidence, presence, and sexiness. You’ll learn about the fabulous makeup, costumes, pasties, moves, grooves, and attitudes of burlesque. The Burlesque Handbook is the must-have guide for everyone interested in this vibrant and wildly popular performance art, providing inspiration and practical information that readers can take straight from the page to the stage!
“Jo is one of the true champions of the burlesque world….Hearing her speak, seeing her teach, and marveling at the way she has been the driving force behind successful events is a real pleasure for me!”
Catherine D’Lish
“When you need an academic diatribe about the importance of burlesque in a gorgeous package served with sex appeal, intelligence and love, that’s Jo! This woman is passionate about burlesque and can recreate the sex appeal of the genre lost long ago.”
– Dirty Martini
Jo Weldon is the headmistress and founder of the award-winning New York School of Burlesque, and many of her graduates have gone on to become burlesque stars themselves. She began performing retro striptease at Rocky Horror while still in high school, did nude poetry readings and performance art while working in strip clubs to get through college, and did her first fan dance at The Battle of the Cheetah Girls in 1993. Now, she is known as the premier educator and authority on burlesque, and is the Educational Director for the Burlesque Hall of Fame in Las Vegas, working with burlesque instructors around the world to develop curriculum and standards for teaching burlesque history and technique. She has published countless articles and photographs about stripping and burlesque, and has been interviewed for television, film, radio, print, and the internet.
//end of book back cover copy
The Burlesque Handbook

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