Meet the gorgeous Sophia St. Villier who will be performing at our Concrete Jungle party on June 12th. 'Expect to see a fun, sensual and cheeky burlesque performance!" she says.
Hi Sophia, can you describe burlesque for us?
Hello Gymbox team. Burlesque is a variety show that can involve circus artists, singers, naughty jokes and stripteasers. I perform burlesque striptease acts.
Is it art or is it objectification?
It's whatever you want it to be! I think burlesque is sensual, humorous and fun entertainment – a good night out. You'll find the audience at most burlesque shows is around 80% women. I think burlesque is so popular as you see people celebrating and taking pleasure in their bodies in very fun, glamorous and silly manner. It's also wonderful to have an event where the audience can dress to the nines if they wish to and express themselves in a dramatic, glamorous fashion.
Do you think Brits are uptight about their bodies?
Yes in some ways compared to other parts of the world, but I don't really see it in terms of being good or bad. I think embracing and loving our bodies and all they do for us is a wonderful thing.
What do you find most rewarding about being a burlesque performer?
I love meeting and working alongside interesting, creative people who exist on the peripheries of society. I love creating my own acts – selecting the music, the and costumes, the concepts and creating something that I love to perform, and I love the energy between the performer and the audience.
What has been your most memorable show to date, and why?
This year I have been performing in theatres in Germany with an amazing cabaret show called 'Let's Burlesque' where I perform my acts with a live band and singers. The energy is incredible. Nothing beats stripteasing to a live band!
What made you take up burlesque?
I studied sculpture at university and my works took on a more performance art focus. I have always been interested in dressing up and vintage clothing. Also at age 4, I was a big fan of Dame Edna Everage, Miss Piggy and Jessica Rabbit – that explains a lot really!
How are you different to Sophia the performer when you are 'off duty'?
I love going for big country walks complete with a good pub lunch.
How are you able to maintain your figure?
My husband is a PT which is very helpful for my training. I do Crossfit training with him. I love squatting and doing weights, it makes me feel strong. I also love mediative and kundalini yoga. I don't eat sugar (thanks to Sarah Wilson's 'I Quit Sugar' book) and I'm pretty paleo with my food choices.
And what can our members expect to see when you perform at the Gymbox party in June?
They can expect to see a fun, sensual and cheeky burlesque performance.
Photo credits: Ayesha H, Mark Sherratt.