Tuesday, 21 March 2017


A couple of photos from the gigantic number we created for the tenth and final Helsinki Burlesque Festival with both of our performing student troupes from our burlesque school  -

We are already on our eight and sixth season with the troupes, and so far we've created ten acts for them separately, but this was the first one we did with both troupes together and also the first one we put ourselves in as well. And it was, like said, the biggest number done over here so far. And as far as we've concerned, that ever will be; we'll stick to choreographing for max 15 persons; 27 was quite the challenge when it comes to rehearsal space and noise, mainly noise, in the studio.

Not sure when we'll get to do this act again with the full cast - smaller versions will most likely be seen, but I'm super happy that we got our ladies up on that big stage and made lots of epicness happen!

Photos with watermark by Tuomas Lairila and the others by Jari Miettinen.

(In case you've missed it, the studio we run is Studio Shangri-La and our burlesque school -first of it's kind when we started -is called the Shangri-La School of Showgirls.)

Friday, 17 March 2017


(because at this time of year, you can just name everything starting with "spring"-)

Apparently there's some gene that determines weather you like celery or not. Same goes for cilantro. (The source being solely "what people way" and the internet so I have no idea how much truth there is in that, but it sure makes a great excuse for people to use.) Good for me I seem to have neither of those genes, because I love celery - and cilantro as well, altough I did not put it in this smoothie, even though one surely could; it'd fit great.

Pineapple makes smoothies wonderfully fluffy. You can add one or two drops of apple cider vinegar as well if you want your smoothie a bit more edgy.

So, here we go:
Cloudy apple juice
Wheat grass
The juice of one lime
About a coffe cup of frozen small pineapple chunks

Woom! in the blender and there you have it!

Thursday, 16 March 2017


Last November when in Prague we had a chance to do a quick (in the lobby of a dance studio) and fun shoot with fabulous photographer Lucie Kout.

These costumes are from our Give it Away-act that Ira-Maria Peltoniemi/Ira's Studio made for us.

Lucie will most likely be coming to Finland at some point this year so there will be a chance for pin-ups and performers, aspiring or established, to shoot with her. I'll post more info about that on my FB page when dates are set!

Wednesday, 15 March 2017


Some time ago I watched the film Sayat-Nova / The Colour of Pomegranates.

It is a1968 Soviet film written and directed by Sergei Parajanov that tells the story bout Sayat Nova, the Armenian 18th century poet and musician. It describes his life symbolically and poetically via his works, often with an allegoric meaning, rather than presenting the events told in a form that we are used to. This did not result in a very amicable reception from Soviet officials the time; the name of the film was changed from Sayat-Nova to The Colour of Pomegranates the most religious iconography were edited away, and the international release was not until years later. (Plus, Parajanov was persona non grata because of his films for a long time and was also imprisoned in the 70's.) But the internet can tell you all that in better detail.

The Colour of Pomegranates is different from and not directly comparable to any other film I've seen - I got into watching if after reading a film review int he paper that said it was un-rateable, as it is a category of it's own. It's a captivating and also, in it's on way, a very strange film.

Actress Sofiko Chiaureli plays several roles troughout the film, both male and female.

The scenes are like paintings; tableaus with Armenian imagery and folkloristic elements. For me it's like some snippets from a memory, the way the childhood is remembered with some details strong and others more fairy tale like, and sometimes like a mind flow; of poems or how they may have been inspired. Not always easy to get but then again one does not have to.

The movie just quit on Yle Arena (great timing I know you're welcome) but is available here and there online and for purchase on Amazon. The 2014 restored version is the closest to the original cut.

Film caps via image searches, mainly from here and here.

Thursday, 9 March 2017


I guess we are at that point of the year again when small whispers and hints about a possible arriving spring start showing up in blogs on the northern hemisphere.  That, and the time when I start mentioning that I probably should wash my windows... But it's a big thing here, always, when the long winter ends and the light starts coming back (and it easily sounds all Game of Thrones when you talk about that..). We're at the yo-yo season where snow melts and returns again and those lighter shoes in the closet start getting restless but will have to wait. But at least we do have more light; longer days.

Like many others, I often get an urge to decorate and fix things up at home with the arrival of spring. Not really happening this year, as everything looks like shit still; we live in a labyrinth of ikea-bags and boxes after the move away from the city flat last November. The only decent looking and thus bearable (plus photographable) room is the kitchen, which of course means it is doomed to look like shit as well, because that's where everyone hangs out and leaves their stuff.

But it's the thought that counts (sort of, sometimes) and I tried my best and brought home a new pretty orchid, cherry tree branches and lots and lots of fruit for those more fresh springy vibes.

It worked.

Friday, 3 March 2017


Tonight the tenth -and final- Helsinki Burlesque Festival begins!
Just checked into the hotel (staying in the city to avoid the long drive home two nights in a row, plus to be able to sip some bubbly as well ;) and will head to the venue in just a bit.

Today we are opening the festival with a  gigantic number featuring  both of our performing student troupes on stage, as well as Tinker Bell and me. That means 27 pairs of legs dancing around and a whole lot of choreographing with small warrior orcs (from some role play game that one of our students gave us to use, the way some use chess pieces -  to structure formations and positions of the dancers on a small scale) before that  -it's an act and  a concept we've planned for over a year and have rehearsed for six months with the ladies and it's very rewarding to get it out on stage tonight. A A bit artsy (with proportions like this it has to), super classic and, as already said - huge. Above is a little sneak peek without giving too much away. For those of you with tickets, see you soon, for the rest, we'll get back to this in pictures later on.