The Meeting Of Mr.Manyfoot

I get easily sidetracked sometimes. Chalk it up to a generational thing; with 140 characters for Twitter and eight seconds of video on Vine, compounded with being part of the Nintendo Generation, paying attention at times can be something of a challenge. I don’t blame the media, it’s all me but I’m taking steps to correct it. Part of which is following up on my threats, er, I mean, my promises. One such promise came from a blog, many moons ago that I recently referenced in another blog. I’m not sure what kind of karmic math this works out to, but I found myself telling the story over dinner a few nights ago to my Save Yourself costars, Jessica Cameron and Sydney Kondruss along with our fearless leader/director Ryan M. Andrews and figured that before I wore the damn story out too much, I’d best commit it to my blog, lest I suffer a head wound on set and forget the incident ever happened.

If you’ve been following this blog for any length of time, and I’m sure that you have because you are likely intelligent and attractive, then you’ll know there was a time when I found myself being the unwilling nursery keeper to a colony of maggots in my closet. They were living off of chicken bones that I had assumed were well cleaned and that I had been saving for a crafting project. However, with a busy touring schedule at that point in my life, I’d had to put the idea on the back burner. When I finally pulled the bones out and spread them all over my bed for a photoshoot, I realized I had something of a collection of maggots that were now all over my bedding. The idea, the bones and the infant silverfish were all disposed of and I didn’t give it much thought afterwards.

However, I hadn’t evicted all of my unknown roommates in my closet. I was on my hands and knees looking for an errant costume piece, when a very large wolf spider flew out of the spot where the bowl had been, front legs up, rearing back. I’m fairly certain that this wasn’t a posture to save a goal in a game of spider soccer that was happening in my closet. To be fair, I didn’t know I had a maggot nursery going on in there, either so it was possible there was a foul ball in play. But I’ve watched my fair share of nature documentaries to know an aggressive posture when I see it. This spider wasn’t looking for a high five.

Up high, bro.

Up high, bro.

It’s been a few years since this incident to which I’ve considerably mellowed in my attitude towards spiders. Live and let live, appreciate the unique biological engineering that makes them what they are, and not freak out like a drunk reality television starlet when I see a little guy in a web, minding his own business. However, back then I had a considerably less copacetic attitude towards sharing space with them. Especially when unannounced. I still don’t like killing things just because of this, so I fetched a jar and a piece of cardboard and trapped my arachnid roommate. I’m not au fait with the typical behaviour of the common lycosidae, but I’m pretty sure this one, which was throwing itself against the glass, was unusually aggressive.

I didn’t want to release it into the alley, for fear it would hit a passing car, and given it’s size, potentially dent it. I knew that in our basement laundry room, we had a number of bugs in the meter cupboard, so with my angry eight-legged buddy, I relocated him to his new space. This involved opening the door, bowling the jar to the back of the room, slamming the door and bolting like the wind back up to my apartment. I’m not going to lie, I might have locked the front door and hidden under my blanket. I kept listening for multiple footsteps up from the basement and a knock on my door and a voice, not unlike Samuel L. Jackson, demanding to be let back in, or he’d kick the door in, but nothing happened.

Years have passed, and I moved out of that space at the beginning of this year. But before I went, I was doing laundry downstairs, and I swear that I could feel eyes on me in the basement. Six of them, to be exact. I felt the spider’s gaze and glanced over at the meter cupboard and saw a leg, just one, protruding by the door. I waved and said hello. It withdrew. I wonder now from time to time, or whenever I tell this story if Mr.Manyfoot lies down there, with generations of children, telling the story of the strange human that brought the family down there. Like Aragog from the Harry Potter books, my name will live on through generations of spiders as the strange human who named their grandfather and rather than kill him, brought him to a new life and world, so that their family could flourish. And that name that I bestowed on their patriarch is still revered and spoken to this day. The one I called ‘EEEEEEekkkkk’.


Little Miss Risk

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Back To Blog And Guts

The horror community would not be what it was without the support of magazines, blogs and the people who love it. They are the very heart and soul of why we do what we do and why we love it. One of these pillars is Fred at Blog And Guts who has continued to be a wonderful support system for myself and others in the genre.

With the advent of Save Yourself, he was kind enough to ask me for an interview once again, which is always a delight. So, here it is, if you’re curious.




Little Miss Risk

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Notorious Vancouver: Bruce Wang

ene Blais. Mask & Makeup Caitlin Janes

ene Blais. Mask & Makeup Caitlin Janes

Up until this point, my interviews for Notorious Vancouver have been all female. As much as I love the many talented ladies of Vancouver (and beyond) I feel that props should be given to the gents of the city who contribute the colourful place that we live in.

That, and this guy is just really, elfin’ cool.

I found out about Bruce Wang when I attended a burlesque show, and had seen the usual glove peels, stocking removals and boa humps, then this guy comes out, does not only boylesque, does it well, but does – wait for it – COSPLAY boylesque. Ladies doing that was nothing new to me, but Bruce’s Thor was so fun that when I had a chance to recommend someone for the Vancouver Fan Expo after party, I HAD to get this fellow on the bill, and he brought the house down.

So in the interests of equal rights for men, and a chance to introduce this man to a slightly larger audience, I give you, the Stark Knight, Bruce Wang.

1. You are a member of a fast growing phenomenon – boylesque – how did you first find out about it and what led you to getting involved?

I guess I knew that men were a part of burlesque, my friend Lace Cadet who dared me into performing used a guy called Sex Luthor for her first number: a  Sword in the Stone-themed affair. But it wasn’t until a saw Wrong Note Rusty perform his Danger: High Voltage solo at Kitty Nights that I realised that I really had something to contribute. Two weeks later, Lace Cadet dared me to take the Becoming Boylesque class with the Screaming Chickens and I’m still going 2 and a half years later.

Photo by: Rene Blais

Photo by: Rene Blais

2. You do a lot of amazing ‘nerdlesque’ which I’ve been lucky to see. Everything as esoteric from Thor to The Cat from Red Dwarf (props, by the way on that one). Where do you draw most of your inspiration from?

This is gonna sound really weird, but my hair. Some of my favourite cosplay is when people use their natural similarities to characters to make themselves look more like them. For me, that tends to come down to my hair a lot: I look for characters with either long blonde hair or ponytails as the best characters for me to do nerdlesque with. For me I’ve noticed that nerdlesque is on an interestingly different level from classic or neo burlesque. The audience is often already familiar with your stage character, but you need to show them that you’re familiar with them also; my nerdlesque always includes some reference of things they’ve done. For Thor, I break a coffee mug in excitement. The Cat does his signature shuffle, and I took note of the time he talks about ‘all 6 of his nipples tingling’. It’s often challenging to fit those into existing choreography, or to make them work with other jokes in the routine.

 3. I’ve heard people slag burlesque as ‘stripping for fat chicks’. I don’t agree with this statement, but have you ever had any negative backlash to your performances or have you mostly had a positive reception?

Yeah, there’s so many things wrong with that statement I don’t think there’s the space to deconstruct it properly in this article. As a guy my negative backlash usually involves other men claiming they ‘don’t want to see that’ from me, which is yet another statement pretty full of social prejudice. In my experience some of the guys leave for a smoke when the man comes on stage, but everyone who stays screams twice as hard so it’s fine with me. In general, everyone who comes and talks to me after has something positive to say. I think the most negative feedback someone’s given to my face was the first time I did Thor: “needed more beard.”

Photo by: Rene Blais

Photo by: Rene Blais

 4. Do you have a history of performance background? When did the root take hold and draw you to the stage?

I used to enjoy the hell out of theatre classes in high school, but never explored it much more than that. I briefly did some competitive swing dancing too. But burlesque has been my first real foray into performing, and it’s really pushed me to a place where I’m much more comfortable being in the spotlight or the centre of attention in other areas is my life. That used to be something that I avoided. Now I’m all “look at me, look at me!”

5. You’ve got some road miles for your performances, so where can Vancouver (and beyond) get a chance to see the ‘Stark Knight’?

I recently got invited to perform at the Edmonton Burlesque Festival on September 13 as part of the showcase, which is really exciting for me! And the weekend after I’ll also be in the showcase for the very first Ottawa Burlesque Festival! I’ll be doing a lot of travelling in the spring! I’m also a part of the Screaming Chickens troupe here in Van, so you can usually see me at our monthly Taboo Revue shows.

6. Your both a performer as well as a producer. What are some of the learning experiences you’ve gone though, and what would be your advice to others who are neonates in either world?

As a performer, I found it really hard to watch myself on video after a performance. I would be so disappointed with how my performance looked compared to how I *thought* it looked, and we’re our own worst critics. But taking video often, forcing myself to watch it, and fixing the things I hate is the best way I’ve found to get better. And then I find I’m less and less disappointed with each new performance.

Producing is hard, but rewarding. And mistakes are inevitable. I’m ashamed to say that I lost a good friend over a miscommunication after the first show I produced. And I can think of a few people I probably rubbed the wrong way after the second. It takes experience to make a good show while keeping everyone happy, and until that happens there’s usually people that deserve apologies. Also, I continuously learn that marketing should be done months in advance! My main advice though, is that performers are the most important part of a show. Treat them well, pay them well and be transparent about money after the show and they’ll want to come back.

  7. Do you have any favourite fellow boylesque performers?

Oh yes! My first burlesque man-crush was Jett Adore from Chicago; he taught me to embrace the shiny. Then I fell in love with his troupe-mate Ray Gunn: an amazing dancer and nerdlesque performer. He taught me that boylesque could be art. Wrong Note Rusty was of course my first, and more recently I was really impressed with Trojan Original (Seattle) and his simple, straight, sexy style. It inspired me to add some more grinding to my move set.

Photo by Dangerous Photography

Photo by Dangerous Photography

To see more of Bruce… literally…. you can find him on Twitter at @onestarkknight and on Facebook here.

You’re welcome, Vancouver.


Little Miss Risk


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Double Whammy.

I’m going to strut a little here, if I may.

Yesterday, two of my favourite horror news sources both released articles about upcoming projects I’m in. Rue Morgue giving us homegrown love for Save Youself, which I’m off to Toronto shortly to shoot with Ryan M. Andrews directing, and Fangoria for the first look photos of Love Sick.

I may look calm. I may look composed. But on the inside I’m running around in a circle, squeeing, and clapping my hands. Suffice to say, I’m pretty damn excited as well as beyond flattered. Both publications have been major influences on me, and I feel like being recognized by both is huge.

So for those who’d like to check out the respective links…

Rue Morgue talks Save Yourself

Fangoria First Looks At Love Sick And Tusk

And since Fangoria has already posted it, the photo of Francisco Barreiro (HERE COMES THE DEVIL) and I for Love Sick.

Gonna need more than a bandaid for that...

Gonna need more than a bandaid for that…


Hugs and hisses,

Little Miss Risk


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Photo Bombed…

There is an Internet movement that’s commonly known as ‘photo bombing’. If you’re not au fait with this phenomenon, it consists of a person or persons in the foreground who are unaware that someone else has jumped into the frame behind them, making a face or doing something amusing to contradict the action in front of them. Or, that is, at least unaware of it until they’ve posted their photo to social media, only to find that the topic of conversation isn’t their awesome wedding photos or selfies, but the person who stepped in and added their own colour to the moment. I’ve been a photo bomber and I’ve been bombed. It’s the give and take that is the social media universe, and I accept the cycle.

I think that most hilarious of these in nature is when animals photo bomb. There are whole sections, I’m sure, of dogs ruining photos by squatting/pooping/humping in the background. These I find are hilarious because they were totally unintentional on the part of the dog, and also because I have all the maturity where humour is concerned of a teenaged boy. For the record, I still think farts are funny too. However, it’s come to my attention that certain animals might be slightly more aware of their actions. As the Internet has shown us on the wondrous talent show that is You Tube that animals are, indeed, jerks.

A perfect example of this was when I was shooting back in January with one of my collaborators, David Denofreo and his lovely wife Tracey. We were shooting in the place I now call home that is a fantastic and 107 years old Victorian salt box style house. The main thoroughfare outside was a dirt road with horses and buggies when the house was built in East Vancouver which is now one of it’s busiest arteries. Part of the charm of this space is the elderly cat, Jazzpurr. Jazz is not my cat, but I love his company. He is eighteen years of age which, were he were human and the equivalent age of eighty eight, would no doubt be regaling me with tales of things that happened to other cats, all dead now. As it stands he is cantankerous, loud, and sort of deaf.

He is also an expert photo bomber.

Jazzpurr showed little to no interest as I finished my hair and make up and David and Tracey loaded in the lights and other gear. It wasn’t until we were set up and shooting that his interest was piqued in what we were doing and photographing. It likely wasn’t that he wanted to see what we were shooting, exactly, I think he just wondered why we weren’t shooting HIM. He then proceeded to try and insert himself into every frame, so that there would be the top of his tabby head or tip of his tail in multiple shots. Finally, it got to the point where we all just said, ‘fuck it,’ and brought him up on the couch.

True to feline form, once we’d decided on incorporating him into the shots, he decided he didn’t want to be in them. But for a few of them, he and I were have a good time. Naked, wearing heels, and with good feline company, which is, how I like to spend my time. T.S. Elliot once wrote an entire book of poems on the contradictory nature of cats. I’m certain that if one was to read ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, that the contents would be between statements of ‘isn’t my cat cute’ to ‘he doesn’t know if he wants to be in the pyramid or out’. Never mind Facebook: the ancient Egyptians were the first to start the whole craze of posting cats to walls, and it’s gotten somewhat out of hand…

But I digress. I was successfully upstaged by an elderly, cranky, tabby cat. And to be honest, I don’t mind a bit.

_MG_2630_Web _MG_2639_Web _MG_2645_Web _MG_2655_Web _MG_2659_Web _MG_2669_Web

Yeah, I still know enough to know when I’ve been photo bombed by a pro.


Little Miss Risk

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