Classes. This is why we’re all here right? BurlyCon is the only convention dedicated to the education of burlesque and there are 4 days jammed pack with classes from a wide range of burlesque educators! Get the full schedule HERE so you can start on your game plan. And don'[t worry- each class is open to those that show up. No need to pre-register. Simply show up(early and on time) to get your ecdysiast education on.
Plan. Plan. Plan! Look over the class list and think about what classes you want to take. Have a goal in mind before coming to Seattle so you can stay organized and not overwhelmed. Do you want to get more active and work on your dance moves? Would you rather focus on the history and culture of burlesque? Having a set path will help you be able to take in everything without stressing too much. However- remember to not go overboard. Throw in some lectures if taking mostly movement classes and maybe add some character development into those history courses. Keeping a little variety will ensure you don’t leave regretful of not having done it all.
Helpful tips: Look at the classes that you want to take and think about what you will need to be prepared for each class. Are you going to a lecture? Grab your pen and paper or note taking tool. Are you taking a movement class? Be sure not to forget your movement clothing so that you can really get into the swing of things. Presenters will list recommendations for their class and I suggest going over that list to make sure that you don’t forget something.
My personal do not forget list includes: practice high heels, knee pads, a few pairs of movement clothing, water bottle, pen/paper. If you’re a veteran of BurlyCon you probably have your favorites. When you’re new it can seem overwhelming but don’t panic! Remember the basics- water bottle, clothes to move in, practice heels, and a way to take notes. This should get you through most classes.
Preparing for the class. When I see a class that I’m really excited about I try to write down 1 thing that I would like to take away from the class. From a burlesque educator standpoint I like to know what about my class has inspired someone to take it. In this way I can structure the class to hit the topics that are important to the students. As a student I’ve found that for me this helps to ground me in the work and mentally prepare me for each class because I walk into each class with a different goal. As the classes are 1 or 1.5 hours it can all start to become a blur by the end of the weekend so this little bit of prep helps me remember each class.
After the class be sure to take a moment and write down the technique or answer for the 1 thing that you wanted to take away and keep it in a secured notebook. Pro-tip: Loose paper is just that: loose. A bound notebook will help keep your notes together.
Evaluation forms are also provided at each class or you can ask for one in the Ops Room. These forms let BurlyCon know what you liked, disliked, and any suggestions you would have for the instructor. They’re able to get feedback on what students loved as well as areas they could improve. These are immensely helpful to both the teacher and BurlyCon. Remember to fill these out after each class, otherwise BurlyCon doesn’t know what you’d like to see next year, and we want to provide programming that you love!
Our Living Legend Guest of Honor are also teaching at BurlyCon.
This is a great way to interact and learn from those that helped pave the way for our great art form. Brandy Wilde will be discussing her life and also how she wrote about it! We wouldn’t be where we are today if it weren’t for our Legends so make sure you plan some time to see her speak. They love seeing this new generation so involved and you’ll come away with a new found respect and awe at this amazing art form we all share.
Of course these are just a few tips to help you prepare for BurlyCon XI. If you have a specific question go to the BurlyCon Facebook Message Board and get help from not only our team, but also your other attendees. If you’re a veteran of BurlyCon post your suggestions and let others know what works for you! We can’t wait to see you in Seattle and hope this has helped you prepare.
Thank you to Vixen Valentine for her post!