Kiki Kaboom as Judy Garland
Nostalgia may not be what is used to be but London's hankering for Edwardian entertainment shows no sign of abating. The Earls Court Festival presented The Court Burlesque last week, compered by Mama Jojo, founder of the London Academy of Burlesque and Europe's first school of its kind.The show kicked off with one of her ex-students, Emerald Fontaine. Appearing dressed as a 1940s pinup with a smile promising more than a politician on election eve, Ms Fontaine dazzled with her moves. The tall redhaired Southern belle known as Crimson Skye came on next wearing a Hannibal Lecter mask and a straitjacket to sing (what else) Patsy Cline's Crazy. Before sanity prevailed, she finished her act by serenading a mannequin's head.Audacity Chutzpah (last seen by us at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern) mimed the tale of a girl preparing for her date and asking the audience which dress to wear before transforming herself into (almost-)Nude Britannia. Tallulah Tempest's innocent guise as an usherette descended quickly into the sultry as she showed how, at least when it comes to ice-cream, she's all fingers and tongue. Her use of a Flake bar gave one lucky attendee 99 reasons to remember her. Disappointment of the night was Spencer Maybe. This blond “boylesque” wonder, accompanied himself on the guitar through three forgettable songs before waking up the crowd with a half-hearted strip at the end.The night's eye-popper was Kiki Kaboom and her pitch-perfect tribute to Judy Garland. Winner of Best Newcomer at last year's London Burlesque Festival, Ms Kaboom may not have Garland's voice but she has her mannerisms and look down pat. Singing Judy's songs with a smile that could light up Vegas, this was no half-hearted karaoke but a heartfelt homage to someone who embodied the glitz and glamour of 1940s Hollywood.The Court Burlesque performed at The Earls Court Festival 2010.