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This topic contains 26 replies, has 18 voices, and was last updated by  Caty Ryan 1 week ago.

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  • #123543

    Caty Ryan
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    Registered On: August 27, 2017
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    Hi everyone,

    At the tender age of “plus three score and ten”, I’ve enjoyed playing my guitar, but strictly in private. (Never had the time or ability to go professional, or even serious amateur for that matter).

    It’s always bemused me what it would be like to “frock up” and perform in front of a normal?? crowd. IE not and audience of “our own”.

    OK The David Bowie’s and Eddie Izzard’s of this world do it, but they are hardly your “every day” CD trying to combine, shall we say, our two passions.

    I know if I was good enough and had a receptive audience I’d like to give it a go, tho if I tried to sing, the deep male voice emanating from all that “female finery” may be a bit “off”.

    I must also add that I guess this topic has always fascinated me, for as a child and teenager back in the 60’s. I was extremely jealous of photos I would see in the press of boys playing female parts in school productions. (I’ve never forgiven anyone then or since, who gets to play Lady Bracknell in the Importance of Being Earnest”!!!)

    It seems to be restricted to all male expensive private schools and I attended an all male public trade based school, so I had no chance….

    Later years of course, the same schools partnered with similar all girls schools so this all died out

    Then I get on the net and read and see all about the womenless pageants and university drama clubs you have in the US and that makes me even more jealous.

    Tho I agree with those who wonder if parents who “frock” up their sons for the latter are unwittingly contributing to their son’s “gender diversity”.

    T’would seem in some cases, no effort is spared for their progeny to “win”. Make up, hair, clothes, shoes, the works…

    There’s another question, has anyone on CDH ever participated  ina womenless pageant and if you did how did it affect you??

     

    Any comments??

    Caty

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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  • #184797
     Rachel Plain 
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    I started burlesque lessons about a year ago. In September/October last year I performed as part of a troupe in three shows in Sydney and Wollongong.

    Here I am, obviously enjoying myself:

    I have carried on with the lessons since then, and this week performed again. Again, I performed in a troupe – here we are in out not-quite-finished costumes, after one of the rehearsals:

    And here we are performing (I’m second from the right):

    (Fun Fact: The lady third from right is my wife. And the one fourth from right is my daughter.)

    This time, though, I wasn’t just part of a group. I performed solo as well! My stage name is Isadora Persano, and I do a cheeky little routine inspired by a bizarre combination of classing 1950s Bettie Page and a love of Victorian/Steampunk looks.

    Oddly enough, being crossdressed has not been aproblem for me. I’m pretty confident out in public, and to be honest burlesque is an environment where anything goes anyway. The real nerves have been that I am in no way much of a dancer or performer, so I’ve had to work hard to make it all work for me. But it’s been more than worth it in terms of the experience and the people I’ve met through it. I am the only guy in the group, and actually do most of the rehearsals in ‘bloke mode’, but we’re one great big happy burlesque team, and it’s not an issue.

    I have two more shows this week, and then I will look at doing my solo performance at some local burlesque events or festivals.

    • #184833
       Caty Ryan 
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      Wow Rachel!!!

       

      Well done…. All I ever thought I would do was be “suitably attired”, ( Ala Linda Ronstadt doing her Nelson Riddle “Crooning Albums” of the 90’s. andstrumming my guitar.) But you sure wen to the next very high level!!!

      And with “family participation” yet

      Congrats again..

      Caty

      PS I cant dance for beans in male mode lest alone en femme and with heels on….

  • #184796
     Rachel Plain 
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    I started burlesque lessons about a year ago. In September/October last year I performed as part of a troupe in three shows in Sydney and Wollongong.

    Here I am, obviously enjoying myself:

    I have carried on with the lessons since then, and this week performed again. Again, I performed in a troupe – here we are in out not-quite-finished costumes, after one of the rehearsals:

    And here we are performing (I’m second from the right):

    (The lady third from right is my wife. And the one fourth from right is my daughter.)

    This time, though, I wasn’t just part of a group. I performed solo as well!

  • #161938
     Rene 
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    I’ve been an active musician in the Kansas City music scene since the late 80’s and have long wanted to perform as Rene but have never found the courage. I did however get a chance to perform in dress several years ago with my wifes all girl garage band. They had a show booked and their guitarist had to bail at the last minute so they decided to dress me up and have me fill in. I dress around my wife every night theses days but this was before she knew about Rene, I tend to naturally get really femmy when i dress and was pretty nervous that i would give myself away given the chance…and probably did. The girls dressed me up in a miniskirt and leopard print blouse and did my makeup and nails. I wore some torn black hose and since they couldn’t find any shoes that fit me (unaware i had a whole suitcase of shoes that would have been great) I just wore my black chucks. Played the show and had a great time, everyone commented how brave i was and what a good sport was about doing it never realizing i was having the time of my life. These days my wife occasionally reminds me of that show and wonders how she didn’t notice then how eager to do it i was, how comfortable I was on stage or that I stayed dressed long after the show was done. I loved it! Rene

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  • #159103
     Val’sheril Starsong 
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    This is a dream of mine, and one I could likely pull off if I could get over my own insecurities about it.  I have a very natural-sounding falsetto and (to my own admittedly biased ears) sound pretty good singing along to, for example, Tori Amos.  And given a few hours’ prep I could likely look the part.

    Problem is, I’m still a bundle of nerves about public appearances as Val, and any of you musicians know what nerves do to performance.  Perhaps the wisest solution is to start just being Val in public before I try belting out tunes on my 12-string.  Give me time to accrue all those necessary stage outfits anyway. 😉

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    • #161977
       Laura Lovett 
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      Val – channel those nerves!

      It’s all adrenaline, and can be good stuff – way better than drugs (although technically, that’s exactly what it is).

      If you know the music well enough, the rest will follow.

      I went Carol singing as Laura last December, and, as luck would have it, the choir had no altos, so that was the part I had to sing.

      Fortunately I’ve coached enough choirs in the past, and can sight read easily enough to have a good idea of the alto lines.

      But singing the lines live in a public shopping centre with a choir was quite a blast!

      Would love to play guitar – although somehow I feel that bass is more Laura’s instrument.

      As for singing, as part of a choir, ok, as I can blend my voice with others – and I can sing Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush at pitch, so no problem with the notes… But tonally, you wouldn’t want to hear!

      I’d give it a bash just to enjoy the experience though – and to wear that dress!

      Love Laura

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      • #163498
         Val’sheril Starsong 
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        Thanks for the encouragement Laura!

        Believe me, I understand adrenaline… channeled properly it can add energy to the performance.  But I know from my own personal stage experience when I’m uncomfortable and nervous my performance suffers, particularly when it comes to the trickier guitar parts and vocal intonation.  Likely it’s the perfectionist speaking, but if and when I perform as Val I want to be on point as I’m stretching my range both vocally and socially.

  • #158374
     anne-marie 
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    Registered On: August 26, 2018
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    Sadly not – not even panto.

    Would love to though but dance like my feet are tied together, If I sang I could clear a place in 5 seconds and have not been blessed with any musical tallent (only thing about me is the way I walk).

    Would be great to do something like a stand up act ‘en femme’ similar to Lily Savage or a burlesque act. Apart from being pee inducing scary it would be great fun.

    Take care girls

    Anne-Marie

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  • #135507
     Dame Veronica Graunwolf 
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    Hi Caty………..I have frocked up and walked around my home playing my fiddle and caverting to Irish tunes and Michael Flatleys River Dance.  A site not for public eyes…to be sure. Since, I can’t carry a tune even if I had a bucket. There are web-sites under “pettycoating” about boys/men being all dresses up and boys in beauty contests. The is another site called World Press New Age Lifestyle …..all about females doing male things like football and about boys doing girls thing…..the worl of feminization.  It is funny and very interesting at the same time….the photos and stories are charming. The gender expectation of the world is reversing itself….maybe wars will be over.

    Check it out……Dame Veronica

  • #134639
     Laura Lovett 
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    I think I’ll write a full post on this as it was another life-assuring day today, but I am so glad that I accepted the invitation to sing carols, and even gladder that I chose to volunteer myself as Laura.

    That’s one enormous tick on the bucket list.

    I’d like the next performance to be as a guitarist – could be bass.

    And I know just the band…

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  • #134490
     Donna Ross 
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    If you would like to play en femme (or drab) to an audience that genuinely appreciates original music, look up InterFilk.  If any of your songs has a connection to Fantasy, SF, space science—or even not—this organization flies people around to perform, puts them up, and feeds them at Filk conventions.  (Filk is the folk music of F&SF fandom, with a generous dose of cats, computers, and gaming—examples at the Virtual Filksing, and on U-Toob).  It’s a very liberal group, too, or I would not suggest it.  Sam Baardman was one “borderline filk” guest, just for his song “Solar Flare”.

    If you’re curious about possible times and places, search “filk con”, and find the links page.  Some regular F&SF cons may have filk tracks, or some programming, but an outright filk con will give you the best audience.

    I’m not personally associated with InterFilk (lack of talent, lol) or any ConComs (lack of spoons).

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  • #134345
     Laura Lovett 
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    Registered On: November 18, 2018
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    Hi girls

    Tomorrow I shall realise my ambition – I’ve been asked to join a group of singers that I helped found many years ago.

    We’re going carol singing in a city centre at 3 different locations!

    I contacted the organiser and thanked him for the invitation, and let him know that I would attend in the place of my male side.

    His reply was both fully accepting and complimentary.

    I’ve been singing Christmas carols with choirs since the age of 6, and always wished I could dress for the occasion. I never dreamt I’d feel so excited about going Wassailing.

    Now all I need is a Santa hat and a garland of tinsel… think I’ll go early and do my first ever shop.

    *excited*

    Falalalala

    Laura

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  • #134090
     Caty Ryan 
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    An addition to my original post!!

    Last Saturday night my beloved and I went to a Christmas social run by a heavily male oriented group, (aka the Mens Shed movement here in OZ).

    The band was led by one of our group members and one of my “2019” resolutions is to get back on the guitar and at least do a guest spot with them next year.

    So naturally my mind turned to doing the above as Caty.

    Dont own any female pants much less any “rocker jeans”, so then the question is “what to wear”.

    Given my love of formal and period wear maybe an evening gown or my “Scarlett O Caty” Civil War ball dress.?

    At the very least one of my “Fella Hamilton” after fives.

    These would be appropriate for a female lead “torch singer”, but a broken down old rocker like me, does not seem to (literally) fit.

    Any suggestions???

    But alas I fear it would really start the tounges wagging within the 100 or so blokes in the group and most of all, my beloved would definitely not approve!!

    S…I…G…H But I can always dream

    Happy dressing (and rock on)

     

    Caty

     

  • #134023
     Carolyne Sherman 
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    Hi all. I go out quite often and enjoy my girl time on the road and although I can NOT carry a tune even in a bucket I have been known to karaoke. I seem to relax a lot more and have a lot more fun en feme than in man drag. Never once have I been given a hard time or trouble.

    🍷C

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  • #133990
     fiona moss 
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    hi girls. my short answer is no! if I was to sing, I would empty a room in less than 10 seconds!……

    fiona xxx

  • #133986
     Terri 
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    I love to sing karaoke while im enfemme. A out 9 yrs ago when i retired i spent 3 days enfemme in Vegas and sang a Frank Sinatra song at a casino. They had a great karaoke bar. It was awesome.

  • #133963
     Janine 
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    I know that this isn’t exactly what you are asking about but I thought that you might like to hear about something that I did.
    I was on vacation last year and I went to a club where there was a really good band playing to listen to them play.
    I was dressed en.femme and by myself having a drink when a good looking guy approached me and asked me if I wanted to dance with him?
    I told him no but he insisted.
    I reluctantly got up and he took my hand and led me to the dance floor
    He turned around facing me and put his arm around my shoulder and it was then that it accrued to me that he was going to be the one who leads.
    I put my hand on his shoulder and followed him as he danced with me.
    It felt strange dancing with a guy as a girl but it wasn’t as hard as I thought that it would be.
    In fact he said that I was a wonderful dancer which put me at ease.
    We danced for awhile then sat down at the table where I had been sitting and talked to each other and I let him buy me a drink.
    We went back to the dance floor and danced some more only this time I wasn’t as nervous about dancing with him
    When I was ready to leave he walked me to my car and as I was opening the door he put his arms around me and kissed me goodnight
    It took me by surprise that I was being kissed by a man because it was something that I never thought that I’d ever be doing.
    I got in my car and said goodnight to him and drove to my hotel with a new sense of what it’s like to be treated as a female.

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  • #133930
     Laura Lovett 
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    This is an ambition of mine – thanks!

  • #127109
     Anonymous
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    I’ve been singing along to a few tunes over the last few weeks, somewhat trying to train my voice for a special occasion. Keep re-singing “Stand Back” by Stevie Nicks, “I’m the Only One” by Melissa Etheridge and “believe” by Cher. I’ve got the lyrics and the performance gestures down(somewhat), but my voice isn’t quite there yet.

  • #124264
     Bobbi 
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    As a semi-professional musician, I can say that it may work to your advantage, to play dressed.

    I live & play in Chicago, & it is so hard to get gigs, because NOBODY wants to hear original music.  I write, & perform my own music, and nobody wants to hear it.

    They want to hear stuff they know, from established professional bands. Beatles, Stones, Aerosmith, Etc. played by local bands.

    (Fine if that’s what you’re into, but I want more, than to play someone else’s music!)

    There are actually people who make serious money, lip synching & playing air guitar!

    However, going up on stage dressed in all your girly splendor might be the hook you need!  🙂

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    • #125019
       Lori Stark 
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      Registered On: August 31, 2018
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      Bobbi – I can attest that audiences are the same in Southern California. Original music is of no interest to most of them. I’ve played rock’n’roll all my adult life, and it keeps getting worse. If you are not among the .01% of musicians who have achieved recognition, there is nowhere to play and get decent money. Part of this is the whole DJ thing — a venue can have perfect-sounding music, any genre, any volume, with an unlimited selection of songs, for less than the price of a live band.

      As for playing while dressed… interesting concept. I never even considered it, probably because too many people I know would be there to see me, and none of them know I’m a crossdresser. Also, my singing voice is way too low — that’s the whole reason bands have female vocalists. 😋 I did perform for a few weeks once with a band called Chix With Dix, but we made no attempt to look like chicks, so it was name only.

      I have come to believe that the only way I can get any satisfaction as an artist playing my own music is by writing and producing it myself, and putting the recordings online, which is what I’m doing.

      Are you performing or recording or anything?

      EDITED TO ADD: If I haven’t made it clear, I am NOT performing as Lori.

      • #159101
         Val’sheril Starsong 
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        It appears to be the same everywhere… people want to hear all the stuff they’ve already heard.  It’s as frustrating as all get out; personally cover bands irritate me unless they make some effort to “make it their own”… if I want to hear songs the way Led Zeppelin plays them I’ll pop on a Zep album, thank you very much!

        I do understand the phenomenon psychologically though; people tend to gravitate toward the comfortable, and appreciating music you’ve never heard before can fall outside that comfort zone.  It just tends to in practice perpetuate a contrived musical aristocracy wherein genuinely talented artists either get trampled or forced into the cover-band mold.

  • #124246
     Skyler 
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    Does “in my car” count? Lmao

  • #123602
     Mandy Cross 
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    Hey honey, I only play the blues harmonica, not sure it would do my lipstick any favours if I was doled up playing that!  Mx

  • #123563
     Anonymous
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    <p style=”text-align: left;”>I’ve  done a gig in my duo en femme  (for a dance)  I wore a cream shift dress , it was great</p>

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