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Burlesque Meets Improv At The Bard's Town

Danny Alexander

Improv comedy combined with burlesque dance may sound like an unlikely pairing, but two local groups are presenting a joint show this weekend.

Improva-sutra is a partnership between the Kentucky Burlesque Society and Project Improv, and will alternate dance numbers and improvised sketch comedy.

The improv performers have created characters for the show, which is set in a fictitious club owned by a Russian immigrant and his family, Project Improv’s Jeff Koleba said.

“The full name of the club is the Improva-sutra Variety Fun Show Club — and Grill,” Koleba said.

The improv performers have created characters, including the club owner, Igor Travinsky, and his wife, Babushka, but will take audience suggestions on what those characters will actually do. Koleba said it’s somewhat like a sitcom.

“We already know the characters in our favorite sitcom, but any given episode it’s, oh this is the day when the guys go to the park or the cast goes to Atlantic City — and we’ll get that from the audience, live.”

The burlesque performers include Pixie Pistola, Holly Harvest, and Siobhan Atomica. Those are not their real names, but you already knew that.

Koleba said that burlesque and improv share a critical element.

“Both art forms utilize audience interaction,” Koleba said. “They thrive on the energy and the responses from the audience, and that really affects how the performers do what they do.”

“Improva-sutra” will be performed at 8  p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Friday, and at 10:30 p.m. Saturday. The performances will be at the Bard’s Town.