Sunday, August 4, 2013

2013-08-03 RIP Dixie Evans, the Marilyn Monroe of Burlesque

Dixie Evans, The Marilyn Monroe of Burlesque, press photo.
Dixie Evans, The Marilyn Monroe of Burlesque, passed away yesterday morning, she was 86.  Dixie was an amazing burlesque performer and performed Marilyn Monroe tribute routines due to her very similar look.  However, even though her career as a headliner was very impressive, what she did in her retirement would inspire generations of performers.

After Jennie Lee's passing, Dixie took over the Goat Farm and created the Miss Exotic World competition which would later become the Burlesque Hall of Fame.  The museum, the legend shows and panels, classes and sense of family that these events have brought to the burlesque community through out the world is because of Dixie.  I have learned more about the history of burlesque by sitting in panels, drinking at bars, and just being around the amazing legends that this weekend draws each year.

Myself, Dixie Evans, Talloolah Love and Siren Santina at BHoF 2008.
Dixie, herself, was a petite woman who was a class act all the way.  She was gracious whenever she met anyone, always willing to pose for a picture.  She wanted to meet everyone and was always encouraging newer performers to express themselves and make their act their own burlesque.  Dixie loved burlesque and the fact that it was evolving into something new, a cross between the classic elements and the influence of modern times.  I encourage everyone to read Jo Weldon Interviews Dixie Evans.  It is an amazing article from how she got into burlesque, becoming the Marilyn Monroe of Burlesque and the evolution of the Museum.

Thanks to Dixie keeping the art alive and available to future generations I will always know exactly where I was when I heard the news, I was at the Syrens of the South 6 year anniversary show.  The show I produce has been running for 6 years, it can now go to kindergarten.  With out Dixie's inspiration and love of burlesque we may never have even known about burlesque.  Burlesque has given me some of my most amazing memories, stories I will definitely be repeating while I'm in the old folks home, and friendships that will last a life time.  It is this amazing part of my existence and I have Dixie Evans to thank for that.

When Dixie suffered her stroke a few months ago the entire burlesque community came together from around the world to create Dixie Evans Week.  Syrens of the South's show is scheduled for August 27th at The Shelter in Atlanta.  We will still be doing that show in her honor because that's what she would have wanted.  There is discussion of having a legend's fund to help the burlesque legends with medical bills and such or it will be donated to the Burlesque Hall of Fame to keep her dream and what she started alive.

On a side not, Marilyn Monroe passed away on August 5, 1962.  Dixie Evans, the Marilyn Monroe of Burlesque, passed away on August 3, 2013 during Marilyn Memorial Weekend.  We got an addition 51 years of Dixie.  I know it's just a coincidence, but I prefer to think of it as dedication to her art, she stayed in character until the end because that's what class acts do!  We love you Dixie!

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