Camilla Cream went from part-time performer to compere extraordinaire. Let’s find out more about Melbourne’s rising burlesque star and hear her casually describe a new type of burlesque-based wardrobe malfunction.
What is your burlesque name? Camilla Cream
What inspired your burlesque name? A picture book! When I first started performing solo I was dubbed with the name “Siren Lamour.” I felt like it didn’t suit me or show what kind of stage persona I have. So, after some thinking (I wanted my name to sound like a real name and I love alliteration) I came across Camilla Cream in a picture book! Fell instantly in love with it, and it has stuck.
What first got you interested in burlesque? The very first time I saw burlesque, I had no idea what it was, I was just having a night out with friends seeing ‘a show’. As soon as I saw the glamorous costumes, dance moves and the sultry side of striptease I was hooked! The one act that really got me was a performer called Bijou who came on stage as a postage box and took off parcel packages rather than clothing items. It was fun and sexy! I wanted to do that! And the rest, as they say, if history!
What style of burlesque do you perform and why? I love classic burlesque (I started out as a neo performer, creating characters) . I love to nod to yesteryear, the tradition and artful skill of removing costume pieces and also popping in the unexpected twist or moment to surprise the audience.
Where are you from and where do you live now? I was born and bred in Melbourne, Australia and still live here! I love it. After all the travelling, all over the world, I have done, nothing feels like Melbourne.
Who are your inspirations and influences? Old world Hollywood – icons, movies, actors, clothing, etc. Plus, modern music. I like mixing the old with the new.
Describe your look: Classically elegant mixed with the girl next door.
What’s the worst and/or funniest thing that’s happened to you when performing? Oh I popped both flaps [Does that mean what we think it means? – Ed] during a performance and I only knew once the photos had been put online!! Haha, funny thing was though, that it was only one photo… the shots afterwards they popped themselves back in!
Who do you like working with most and why? There are a few people I enjoy working with and it’s always because it’s fun and easy-going. Those people have drive and dedication, are reliable but can also have a laugh. It makes it worth being backstage.
How often do you perform? Pre-pandemic very often! I got to the point where I was performing multiple nights a week and interstate every month. Post-pandemic I now perform a couple of times per month and that’s okay with me at the moment.
Where can people usually see you perform? I don’t have a ‘usual’ space/venue, but if you follow me on socials or check out my website, I have a section for upcoming shows.
Any upcoming burlesque tour plans? Taking my troupe The Sugar Showgirls all over Australia – we have lots of plans in the works for 2023 already. We would love to go international though, so if anyone is interested in hiring us, please do get in touch!
Do you compete and have you won any titles? I have competed in the past and got a RU Title and a State Title. I will never say never, but I don’t think I’ll compete again. It was great for that time in my career, but I really like connecting with audiences and giving them a great show, rather than my own merit right now.
What other things do you do in the burlesque industry besides performing? I produce shows (as an individual producer and for a troupe). The Sugar Showgirls produce their own shows with a structure unlike other burlesque shows – we like to mix it up.
What are you available for and how should people contact you? I am available for burlesque and cabaret bookings – this could be for local cabaret or burlesque shows, hens/bucks parties, corporate events, you name it, I’ll probably do it!
Is burlesque your full-time gig, or do you have a day job? I have a day job (and I actually enjoy it most days)
How can the burlesque community support you, your brand and your business? Like my Social Media accounts, share posts, buy tickets to shows, invite friends to shows and FB events – the same as many performers I would think.
What do you love about burlesque? Freedom. Creatively, personally and as a woman. I love that there are no restrictions on what burlesque is – I can mix in any other kind of performance and make it my own. I can own my body and space on the stage in front of others and inspire them to do the same. I can unleash certain sides of me that are hidden in my day-to-day life. It really is freeing.
What do you hate about burlesque? The drama. I tend to stay off social media a lot now. I manage my time on Facebook and Instagram much better. But also that the Australian government and community as a whole (big generalisation here) tend to undervalue the arts and funding is very lacklustre. It would be nice to have more importance in the nation’s eye.
Contact Camilla Cream
Which social media accounts can people follow to keep up with you?
All images have been supplied by the performer. If you’d like to add any missing photographer credits or attribution, let us know in the comments.