The 14 Words

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

A new breed of Jewish burlesque

From Haaretz (Jewish publication)

In this post-feminist era, performers not only bump and grind and celebrate their sexuality but also incorporate their ethnic heritage into their shtick.

Sometimes they hold hands; other times they dance by themselves. But make no mistake: The Schlep Sisters — Minnie Tonka and Darlinda Just Darlinda — are emotionally committed to each other as they peel off their clothes in a burlesque parody of sibling love gone demented. To the tune of The Barry Sisters warbling in Yiddish, “I did it my way,” they slither about, beaming slyly as they strip down to pasties and finally g-strings featuring Stars of David on both their groins and tremulous butts.

It’s the midnight show at the Slipper Room, a trendy hotspot on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, and the young audience is howling at the anarchic comedy that is taking place onstage. Titillation is secondary.

The Schlep Sisters represent a new breed of Jewish burlesque artists who not only bump and grind and celebrate their bodies and sexuality — it is a post-feminist era, after all — but also incorporate their ethnic heritage into their sexual shtick. Colleagues of The Schlep Sisters include Little Brooklyn, Lady Aye and Cherry Pitz on the East Coast, along with Honey Lawless, Odessa Lil and Miss Indigo Blue on the West Coast.

Depending on your viewpoint, these performers are marvelously liberated or suffer from psychopathology, extol their Jewish lineage or deride it, feel like outsiders and point to themselves as Jews (before someone else does) or are wholly self-accepting.

Most of those I interviewed have little doubt that their burlesques are the ultimate expression of Jewish self-acceptance. Indeed, Minnie Tonka contends that she is simply extending the notion of Jewish identity. 
“It’s healthful and playful, and many women thank us,” she said.
“Seizing upon and representing Jewish identity onstage makes perfect sense,” said burlesque show master of ceremonies Bastard Keith (aka Abe Goldfarb). 
“Jews are still a minority and reflect a minority viewpoint. Christians don’t have to point to themselves on the stage, because they have cultural hegemony and primacy.” 
Meanwhile, Catholic burlesquers are known to gussy themselves up as virginal parochial schoolgirls for their naughty acts. But then they, too, are minorities.


  1. De-filement is pure Juden. Burlesque and other perverted 'art', was common place in all Jew comtrolled emvironments. It's how they work.


  2. You nailed us. As one of the filthy, hook-nosed kikes in the article, I'd like to apologize for being this sexy. It is thoroughly unfair and culturally ruinous to look this good.