Video: Burlesque stars of the nerdlesque scene

We profile five mainstays of nerdlesque, a geeky subgenre of burlesque. Plus, watch a burlesque video or two of their nerdiest numbers.

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  • Photograph: Bruke Heffner

    Miss Mary Cyn, coproducer of Epic Win Burlesque and Original Cyn

  • Photograph: Paul Ferris

    Miss Mary Cyn, coproducer of Epic Win Burlesque and Original Cyn

  • Photograph: Paul Ferris

    Miss Mary Cyn, coproducer of Epic Win Burlesque and Original Cyn

Photograph: Bruke Heffner

Miss Mary Cyn, coproducer of Epic Win Burlesque and Original Cyn


Miss Mary Cyn, coproducer of Epic Win Burlesque and Original Cyn (missmarycyn.com)

Like many neoburlesque performers, Cyn studied theater in college and came to NYC itching to get onstage. A friend suggested she look into burlesque, and Cyn was immediately smitten. “The first show I saw had Nasty Canasta, Dottie Lux, Veronica Sweet, Little Brooklyn and Schäffer the Darklord,” she says. “An incredible lineup for a geeklesquer-to-be!” From the outset, Cyn’s acts were character-based (Newsies, comic-book villains, sci-fi icons) and featured incredibly authentic outfits made with skills she learned from her mother, a professional costumer. Having performed with EWB since its inception, she was recently tapped by Lugo to replace the departing Schaffer as coproducer. Cyn, who also ran a bimonthly show, Original Cyn, isn’t surprised that nerdlesque has taken off. “I think most girls who are into burlesque are geeky in some way. It was kind of inevitable.”

Her nerdiest numbers: Slaying and stripping as the Joker; Star Trek’s Data trying out robotic moves on the holodeck.



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