Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A few questions with Toniet Gallego, aka Chinita La Chou Chou

Posted By on Wed, Jun 16, 2010 at 10:26 AM

Blast-Off Burlesque has seen the future, and it’s not wearing any underwear. This week, the burlesque troupe stages The Future of Tomorrow, a space-age strip tease combining tributes to sci-fi favorites and original numbers by Blast-Off’s regular lineup, as well as a handful of special guests, including the Southern Belle From Hell, Renea’ Le Roux. Here, Blast-Off member Toniet Gallego, aka Chinita La Chou Chou, answers a few questions about her inspirations and the current production.

Who is Chinita La Chou Chou?
Chinita La Chou Chou is the alter ego of Toniet Gallego. Toniet is a member of the electronic music band, Fader Vixen as well as an up-and-coming indie filmmaker who is currently is co-producing a film adaptation of Stephen King's Survivor Type. She has been a core member of Blast-Off Burlesque for about three years now.

How would you describe her style? Do you make your own costumes?
Chinita's style is exotic, animated, playful, and graceful. She likes to poke fun at herself.

For costumes, it depends on the theme. I go to thrift and fabric shops. The art supply and hardware stores. I'll pretty much go everywhere to make that 'look' happen. You wouldn't believe what I've found at the Dollar Tree. I love that place!

What drew you to burlesque?
I was seeking an outlet to fulfill my passion for dance and visual art as well as utilize my theater experience.

Your Blast Off bio includes hula and candle-dancing among your talents. What exactly is candle-dancing? And what other elements do you like to include in a performance?
For candle dancing, I hold lighted candles in both hands and dance away. It's very hypnotic and exotic especially with club music. I am trained in hula dance and have been dancing this since I was around 7 years old. Other props I use in dance are Chinese silk sleeves, martial arts fans, LED lights and sausage links. That's right. HOT DOGS!

How does Blast-Off Burlesque come up with show ideas and performance numbers? Is it a collective creative process or is it left up to individual performers?

Blast-Off's creative process is both collective and individual. For example, someone may have an epiphany and throw out an idea for a show number. Then as a team, we pow-wow, develop and expand that idea. Additionally, we respect and help out each other on our solo numbers too. This allows creative freedom for each individual to strengthen their character/persona's skill and specialty. You can't ask for a better work environment for group fun and creativity.

What can the audience expect during at The Future of Tomorrow? Are there any special surprises in store?
You can expect our usual, comedic shenanigans. It's a complete variety pack of weird, cool and sexy! There are definitely surprises and I'm not gonna spoil it. For now, we'll just have to tease and give you the naughty reveal at the Blast-Off Burlesque show.

The Future of Tomorrow $10-$17. Thurs., June 17, 9 p.m.; Sat., June 19, 7:30 and 10 p.m. 7 Stages Theatre, 1055 Euclid Ave. 404-523-7647.

(Photo by Marc Turnley)

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