at Bottoms Up!

Burlesque first showed its bottom with the “tease” in a play called Lysistrata by the ancient Greek playwright Aristophanes. Lysistrata is a comedy where the women characters in the play used their sexuality and sensual wiles to convince their husbands to stop the war through sexual blackmail and tease. Burlesque was then seen performed by many Vaudevillians and confronting performers of the 1840s as a political satire and commentary of the social classes.

A typical Burlesque night included 3 or 4 acts of comedy, dance, mime, singing and striptease, with a grand finale. Burlesque then made its way to the shores of the US in early 1900s where the tease (and titties) had major influence. Over the next four decades many burlesque venues opened up, where great performers such as Gypsy Lee Rose and Zorita took to the stage.

Nowadays Burlesque can be clearly defined in two categories – the European political satire, involving taboo topics and risqué performances, and the other being the American pin-up girl style of the saucy tease. Here at Bottoms Up’s Melbourne burlesque studio, we combine both genres.

Burlesque has since evolved dramatically and new burlesque, or neo-burlesque, tends to try to shock the audience and takes on many forms. It includes acts based on the earlier conventions of strip tease, cabaret, comedy and elaborate costumes but brings the original foundations of political satire to the relevant issues of day.


Burlesque Beginners

New to Burlesque?

Bump and grind, peel and pose your way through this 8-week course. Learn the history and the foundations of Burlesque through playful poses, shimmies and shakes, hip and chest isolations, undulations, glove peeling and Burlesque struts. While learning technique and moves you will be guided through a choreographed group routine giving you the tools needed to develop body awareness and confidence, along with a cheeky and seductive burlesque attitude! This course is for those with little or no previous experience in dance and burlesque. All levels of fitness welcome.



Bump 'N Grind



There's no school like the old school!

This course throws a spotlight on the transition from golden age peelers through to modern striptease.

Learn the techniques, history and attitude of the fierce bump and grinders of Burlesque!

All levels welcome


Chair Dance & Chair Trickery

WOW your audience!

The humble chair.  An amazing apparatus to add to your dance and to WOW any audience.  Sometimes sassy, sometimes cheeky, sometimes seductive, sometimes dynamic & tricky. This 8-week course will combine cabaret, burlesque, neo, contemporary & exotic dance styles, with tricks you never dreamed of doing on a chair.  Chair

Dance will begin with the basics and will expand your chair dance skills to more complex & impressive moves!

Each 8-week term will focus on a new style with new tricks, so it is the perfect course to keep doing over & over!

This course is fantastic for core strength, flexibility and developing great body confidence and awareness. 

No previous experience is required, although we do recommend to have completed a Burlesque or Pole Beginner level course (or similar).


All about Rock N' Roll attitude!

With hot rock n’roll routines, attitude and red lipstick this brand new course is suitable for beginners to advanced dancers. Unleash your rock’n’roll showgirl while building your dance confidence and strengthening technique with Burlyrock this summer! With over 20 years of experience, Ferri Maya the Goddess of Rock ’n’ Roll, AND the current Miss Burlesque Melbourne 2019, has performed far and wide. She is educated across ALL areas of Dance and has performed internationally for rock royalty and Royalty alike.

All levels welcome!


Feathered Fan Dance

Fluttering, floating feather fans

Accredited to Faith Bacon and popularised by Sally Rand, feather fan dancing has been the bawdy bump and grinder's delicate, ephemeral sister in Burlesque. Using conceal and reveal to tease and titillate, feather fan dancing   is a staple skill in any Burlesque enthusiasts bag of tricks!   Learn how to become one with your fans as you flutter

and float. 

Every 8-week term reveals new choreography & techniques so you can fan dance the whole year round!

Students must have completed a Burlesque Beginners course (or similar) prior to enrolling.

Silk Fans 

Naked Butterflies

Fluttering, floating, soaring! Silk fans are a dramatic, mesmerising style of fan dance and dramatically different from feather fan performance. Learn the basic techniques and an emotive choreography with Bella de Jac.

*currently not running

Shakin' Tease

60s Burlesque! 

After the censorship of the 1950s clubs like Whisky A Go Go, Peppermint Lounge and the famous Playboy Club brought back the art of burlesque with showgirls dancing on bars and teasing the audience with crowd interaction. It was a great time to be a performer, and to be alive!

Drawing inspiration from 1960’s vixens such as Jayne Mansfield, Sophia Loren, Ursula Andress (Bond girl) Ferri Maya will be teaching the art of strip n shake. Think shimmies, shaking and stripping to a rockin 60s soundtrack! It'll be a gas!

We highly recommend completing a Burlesque Beginners course (or similar) prior to enrolling.

*currently not running


Neo Burlesque


Refine technique, characterisation & stage craft

This brand new course has been created for experienced Burlesquer’s wanting to refine their technique & stage craft with a view to performing on the big stage in a group show.


The course will delve deeper into developing confidence & technique as a performer. Focussing on characterisation, stage presence & theatrics & musicality.  You will explore the diverse & expressive styles of traditional & neo Burlesque.  Learning the Vaudevillian roots of parody & satire through to the pin-up era.   Fine tuning those Burlesque walks, the shimmy & shake, bump n’ grind and really bringing the sass! 


Advanced Burlesque is a performance level class.  It is for those with experience in Burlesque, it’s ‘not your first rodeo!”  There is no end to learning & refining technique & stage craft.  This course will change slightly from term to term whilst still covering these principal elements, so you can joyfully enrol multiple times.


Please check with your teacher prior to enrolling.


Pop in any night from 5:15pm and all day Saturdays and have a chat to one of our lovely receptionists. They will be more than happy to help you out with any enquiry!



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