Through the Keyhole: Black Diamond Peep Shows

After Miss Petite Coquette and I traveled to NYC last summer, she to perform, and I to enjoy, we felt that adding a speakeasy-style mini-show to our repertoire made perfect sense.

Confession: The first 'non-Black Diamond' burlesque show I ever saw was two months after we debuted our first show here in September 2010. I have to be honest, I stepped away, having seen a very good show at The Delancey in New York City, knowing that we had something special back at home in Sarasota: very high production value, great variety and pacing, and amazing talent!

New York City has a long standing and highly diverse burlesque scene. I always come away inspired. Miss Petite's performance at Nurse Betty, a great venue on Norfolk Street (just a few doors up from a bona fide Speakeasy that blew us away!), with the famous 'Asian Sexation' Calamity Chang at the helm of her weekly "Spanking the Lower East Side" offering, was such a thrill and gave us some yummy new ideas for our own BDB.

Both of us, performer and producer, came away loving the informality of it. It felt old-fashioned and a bit naughtier than our full blown productions. Instead of an hour and a half striptease/vaudeville staging, it was just beautiful performers bumping, grinding, stripteasing to a standing room only crowd of appreciative voyeurs. A red light hung from the ceiling. The dressing room consisted of a tablecloth hung for privacy from any already compact bar and serving area. Gorgeous, seductive works of art on the wall. Low couches and the unmistakable vibe of a seriously cool off-the-beaten-path club. We were intoxicated.

Petite and I returned to SRQ and quickly decided that the "brothel" upstairs at The Gator Club was the perfect place for our Peep Show idea. A four month run there, with a mini-show of bump and grind plus two four-act sets of our delectable dames, proved to us that Sarasota was hungry for more of what we were best at: offering stunning eye candy and a trip in a time machine to a more innocent and sexier era.

This month, we moved our little "pop-up peep-show" to Perq Coffee Bar on Hillview. What a great energy! A majority of the crowd were Black Diamond virgins, and dare I say burlesque newbies as well. They were delighted at our performance, especially the Peep Show debut of our boylesque dandy Johnny Sparks!

There will be more Peep Shows in the near future. Black Diamond has always desired to bring something old/new to our fans. Whether it's a taste of old-school elegance, or a trip to 1920s New York City, trust us: it is delightful on this side of the keyhole!

Behind the scenes look at a Black Diamond Burlesqu...
The Troupe