Burlesque Hall of Fame event brings back old-school tease

The Burlesque Hall of Fame Weekend takes place at The Orleans , the same resort that hosts the Viva Las Vegas rockabilly gathering in April, and attracts some of the same tattooed, vintage-attired followers.

But there's at least one practical distinction: You can probably get in to the burlesque festivities this weekend. While "all-in" passes for the rockabilly usually sell out in advance, "we purposely hold back tickets," says the Burlesque Hall's leader, Laura Herbert.

"We really want local Las Vegans to embrace the history of burlesque in Vegas," Herbert says of the invitation to join about 800 fans, who travel from countries such as Spain, Finland and Australia.

And more people seem to understand this is retro striptease - "This is your grandmother's striptease" is a tag line - and not the pole acrobatics often misaligned with the word "burlesque" in Las Vegas. "People know enough to be curious about it now," Herbert says.

Single tickets are sold for the two centerpiece shows. Today's 8 p.m. "legends" showcase, the "Titans of Tease," turns the stage over to dancers who can be well into their 90s. Saturday's 8 p.m. "Tournament of Tease" is the competition for today's generation of dancers who carry on the burlesque tradition.

They are surrounded by peripheral events such as a "Texas Tease 'Em" poker tournament and even some "Naked Girls Reading" from burlesque memoirs.

Contact reporter Mike Weatherford at mweatherford@ reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0288.