Friday, January 15, 2016

An Interview with Jezabelle

On Wednesday January 13th, I was afforded with an opportunity to meet and chat with Jezabelle Von Jane who is the art director and house mother of the Aerial Gypsy Burlesque prior to her radio interview for the Your voice with (Tu Voz con) Christina show. The interview was to be held at the Stroudsburg, PA location of Lehman Township, PA station WABT aka Pocono 96.7 We got together earlier at Artisans of the Anvil which is an artist-blacksmithing company in Stroudsburg, PA in a meeting that was arranged by Armand Masque Scholaris who produces the Aerial Gypsy Burlesque shows. The experience proved to be a pleasurable one as I found a delightment in learning about Ms. Von Jane along with her love for the art forms of Burlesque and Vaudeville.

During our conversation, I learned that Ms. Von Jane sees herself mainly as a Vaudevillian whose numerous talents include dancing, comedy, emceeing, and more in addition to her considerable skills in creating wonderful productions through her stage set designs and artistic perceptions. The manifestation of her talents and skills began when she discovered that a number of employment opportunities in the Burlesque companies she encountered paid considerably higher wages than other local businesses. Her love for the business grew as she learned doing what she wanted to do was more profitable both financially and artistically than what people around her thought she should be doing. This was enhanced when she began participating in the process of creating productions for the Burlesque troupes she was associated with until she formed her own company. Since then, Ms. Von Jane has earned great acclaim for the shows she elevates to an even higher stratosphere through her plethora of skills and talents. You can learn more about Jezabelle Von Jane by exploring her Website at

It was after our talk did we travel to the WABT aka Pocono 96.7 studios so Ms. Von Jane and Mr. Scholaris could be interviewed by Christina Luna Zabih Boldu of the Your voice with (Tu Voz con) Christina show. A variety of Latino foods were present when we arrived which were eagerly consumed while Armand and Jezabelle waited to be individually interviewed. Armand was the first to enter the studio adorned with microphones and other technology relating to broadcast radio. The door closed behind him to assure the pristine audio conditions needed for a quality recording of the interview. This inspired Ms. Von Jane to listen with an inquiring ear at the door.

After Mr. Scholaris concluded his interview with Ms. Boldu, Ms. Von Jane entered the studios. The closing of the door did not impede the ability to hear a great deal of laughter from behind it's structure. The joy of the inaudible words were felt throughout the building and everyone in it. It was during this time did I partake of an opportunity to meet and chat with the station's personnel. This included the Station Manager, Kerri-Anne Freeo, with whom I shared a wonderful conversation which allowed me to learn more about the station and all it offers to the community. It was during this chat did Ms. Boldu's interview with Ms. Von Jane concluded and the remainder of our time at the station was spend bidding appreciative adieus to everyone present. You'll find more photographs taken at WABT aka Pocono 96.7 in the “An Interview with Jezabelle” Gallery at

The “Your voice with (Tu Voz con) Christina” show is hosted by Christina Luna Zabih Boldu and the show can be heard every every Sunday beginning at 8am on WABT aka Pocono 96.7. It is designed to give a voice to the Hispanic community through the presentation of entertainment, music, and interviews. Her interview with Armand Masque Scholaris and Jezabelle Von Jane of the Aerial Gypsy Burlesque can be heard on Sunday January 17th. You can learn more about Christina Luna Zabih Boldu and her show by exploring her Facebook Page at or her Website at

The interview itself was designed to promote an upcoming production of the Aerial Gypsy Burlesque which will be presented at The Sherman Theater in Stroudsburg, PA on Saturday January 23rd as part of their Dinner Series. The event includes a buffet dinner and a performance of the Aerial Gypsy Burlesque (or, if a patron wishes, he/she can experience the show only). The evening offers a delightful fusion of burlesque, Vaudevillian, and cabaret arts featuring the skill and challenge of aerial performances. Performances will be given by Lilith Noir, Bunny Bedford, ViVi Noir and her Follies, Venus Man Trap, and Zsa Zsa L'Amour along with a Tittilizing number performed by Jezabelle Von Jane. The evening will also feature comedian Andy Malafarina and crooner extraordinaire Brad Roccanova The Buffet Dinner begins at 6:30pm while the Show begins at 8pm. You'll find more information about the show and ticket information at The Sherman Theater's Facebook Page at www.face­ or their Website at Additional information can be gained through the event's Facebook Invitation at

The word Burlesque derives from the Italian “burlesco,” which, in turn, is derived from the word “burla” of the same language which means a joke, ridicule, or mockery. The English translation of the word has been in effect since the late 17th century but the concept wasn't presented as a theatrical art form until the Victorian era (1800s) which consisted of songs and ribald comic sketches, assorted male acts such as acrobats, magicians, and solo singers, chorus numbers, and an exotic dancer or a sports (wrestling or boxing) match at it's conclusion. A variety show format was introduced in United States from the 1860s to the 1940s and often featured bawdy comedy and female striptease.

Burlesque shows in England went out of fashion towards the end of the 19th century and were replaced by Edwardian musical comedy. However, Burlesque in the United States continued while gradually increasing its focus on female nudity and, by the late 1930s, burlesque shows would have up to six strippers supported by one or two comics and a master of ceremonies. But, by the 1970s, Burlesque declined as nudity became commonplace in theaters and other media. This decline continued It wasn't until the 1990s when a revival (Neo-Burlesque) movement offered a nostalgic experience of the perceived glamor of the classic American burlesque. The Aerial Gypsy Burlesque is not only a continuation of this revival but also an enhanced extension of the art form.

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

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