Femme Friday — Kitten LaRue

Goodness, what a fine and happy time I had at Kitten and Lou’s “Holier Than Thou” show the other night! I was not raised in any religion, but I did have my heart broken by the UUs as an adult, and that is extremely mild given how toxic and death-dealing organized religion is and has been to queers. To so deftly examine such a huge, fraught topic through an extremely queer lens, using generosity, love and some serious hot and nasty, is truly a gift beyond compare. I am left with great admiration for Kitten’s dedication, creativity, skill and sheer fabulousness, and for her willingness to queerly and bravely use her art to address the biggest and most complex issues, not just to condemn, but also to heal.

Deep gratitude to Kitten for her high femme genius!

I asked Kitten to talk about performance and femme, and this is what she told me:

Thoughts on performing femme-ness in my work:

I believe that presenting and performing femininity is a radical act, now more than ever. In this current political climate, reclaiming and presenting the exaggerated trappings of high femme glamour on stage (big wigs, big lashes, high heels, sequins, and glitter) as a source of power, self-examination, and a way to subvert the male gaze has felt like a form of revolt for me….a revolt against the current administration and culture which views women as objects to be controlled, and a climate that makes all humans that present femme feel unsafe and less powerful.





About Kitten LaRue:

“Polished, clever, and glamorous…” (Dita Von Teese)

“Kitten LaRue is like the Patti Smith of Seattle burlesque.” (Burlesque Seattle


“Seattle’s biggest contribution to burlesque since Gypsy Rose

Lee” (Seattlest)

“She’s an independent creative force and a woman of multiple pioneering

talents” (Burlesque Seattle Press)


Kitten LaRue is the Artistic Director, Producer, Choreographer, and a starring

member of Seattle’s critically acclaimed burlesque supertroupe, THE ATOMIC

BOMBSHELLS, and one half of celesbian dancing duo, Kitten N’ Lou, winners of

Burlesque Hall of Fame’s “Most Comedic” title, and voted the #1 Burlesque

Performers in the world (Burlesque Top 50). As an original member of New

Orleans’ legendary Shim Sham Revue, Kitten has been at the forefront of the

international Burlesque scene since 2001, featured in numerous U.S and

international media, including Bust magazine, GQ magazine, USA Today, Tease!

magazine, MTV.com, Seattle Magazine, Emmy-winning series Full Focus, The

Craig Kilbourne Show, The Discovery Channel, Chase Jarvis’ Seattle 100, and

was featured on the cover of The Stranger and Boston Spirit Magazine. Most

recently Kitten appeared on PBS dancing with Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett for

their Cheek To Cheek Live concert.


At the helm of THE ATOMIC BOMBSHELLS, Kitten has produced and toured to

packed theaters in the U.S., China, and Europe, was a headlining performer at

The Burlesque Hall of Fame’s Legends showcase, has shared the stage with

such luminaries as Dita Von Teese, Tura Satana, and Lady Gaga, and continues

to produce wildly successful events all over the Northwest and abroad, including

The historic Moore theater in Seattle, a sold-out headlining spot at the

Bumbershoot Music and Arts Festival, and a yearly summer residency in

Provincetown, MA. Kitten LaRue has also made her Off-Broadway debut at Ars

Nova in NYC, and produced an Australian tour with The Atomic Bombshells in



Kitten LaRue is also 1/3 of powerhouse homo-fabulous production trio

DeLouRue Presents (FREEDOM FANTASIA, Homo For The Holidays, PARTY

SCHMARTY) with Lou Henry Hoover and BenDeLaCreme, and is the creator of

the now-legendary Seattle club event TRAINWRECK.





Every Friday, I showcase a queer femme goddess. Suggestions welcome!