Broadway Bares: Winter Burlesque
Mother Nature tried to chill things down with the Polar Vortex, but Broadway Bares countered with a steamy edition of Winter Burlesque on January 26, 2014.
The 24th season of Broadway Bares kicked off with two eye-popping performances of Broadway Bares: Winter Burlesque, raising $32,781 for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.
This year's edition of Winter Burlesque, dubbed Calendar Girl, took the standing-room-only audience on a scintillating journey through every month of the year. The show was based on last summer's Fire Island Pines sensation and inspired by 1999's Broadway Bares IX: Calendar Girl.
Two-time Tony Award nominee and Bares favorite Christopher Sieber opened the sizzling show, leading the company in a rousing number that celebrated his affection for each month of the year – and the 12 sexy performers representing them. Starting the New Year off in the most sexy way, Julius C. Carter stripped out of his black tie and tuxedo to reveal a chiseled six-pack as an ensemble of equally enticing dancers backed him up.
In a scantily clad ode to Valentine's Day, Anne Otto used two pink feather fans to taunt and tease the audience. After a frisky introduction to March by Billy Steeves, a quartet of frolicsome lads – Barrett Davis, Carlos Gonzalez, Cesar Abreu and Anthony Rooar DeCarlis – celebrated St. Patrick's Day by flirting with a seemingly innocent leprechaun, played by J. Morgan White. They eventually teased him out of all of his clothes and unveiled a special pot of gold at the end of his rainbow.
Representing both April showers and May flowers, Matt Anctil performed a humorous drag number. When backup dancers Sidney Erik Wright and Patrick Boyd clumsily destroyed his costume, the drag diva taught them a lesson by stealing their rain umbrellas and leaving them onstage with nothing but a few strategically placed blossoms.
June was "popping" out all over as Heather Lea Bair flirtatiously popped her costume of balloons. July featured Elizabeth Dugas as a spirited beach beauty with a crush for delectable pool boy Michael Scirrotto.
For August, Kristine Bendul, Waldemar Quiñones-Villanueva and Ryan Worsing performed "In the Garden," an elegant pas de trois originally choreographed and performed for Broadway Bares VII and X by Arte Phillips, who passed away in 2008. The number, which was restaged for Calendar Girl by Bendul, received a standing ovation from the audience.
September featured Matthew Rossoff as a feisty student with a penchant for teacher. In a Halloween-inspired mad science number, four harness-clad assistants, played by Rashaan James II, DeCarlis, Gonzalez and White, stripped Daniel Robinson out of a straightjacket and down to a leather thong. Thanksgiving showcased Benjamin L. Horen as a pilgrim seduced by four tasty turkeys in the form of sexy ladies Dugas, Bair, Otto and Jena VanElslander.
To cap off the year, impish elf Barrett Davis' mischievousness drew the ire of the other elves. When a studly Santa Claus, played by Justin Smith, spanked him for his naughty behavior, the rest of the elves changed their tune, demanding to be reprimanded as well.
The evening's finale featured award-winning recording artist and Broadway veteran Matt Zarley performing his single "Everybody 4 Somebody," accompanied by the entire Broadway Bares: Winter Burlesque company.
Throughout the evening, a scantily clad Steeves kept the year flying by, introducing each month with giant cards. After each show, Sieber led Bares' infamous "rotation," encouraging the audience to tip their favorite dancers for added donations.
Broadway Bares: Winter Burlesque was directed and choreographed by Michael Lee Scott, with additional choreography by Sidney Erik Wright and Arte Phillips. Tony Award-winning director and choreographer Jerry Mitchell is executive producer and creator of Broadway Bares.
The event started a Bares season that will include Broadway Bares: Solo Strips in May and Broadway Bares 24 on June 22 at Hammerstein Ballroom located in the Manhattan Center, NYC. Tickets for Broadway Bares 24 are on sale now. This year's Broadway Bares 24 theme and details about Solo Strips will be announced later this spring.
Broadway Bares is presented by M•A•C VIVA GLAM and generously sponsored by United Airlines.
Photos by Daniel Roberts and Kevin Thomas Garcia