INTERVIEW: Burlesque Uni Co-Founders, Rosie Mae and Pastel Supernova
Rosie Mae and Pastel Supernova, collaborate to launch Burlesque Uni, a fitness studio designed to teach the art of burlesque dance. The school is a 10-week program for students looking to further their dance and
performance skills, but also welcomes students of all-levels. Read more about what inspired these women to start their own studio below.
Thank you so much for taking the time and answering my questions. Tell us more about Burlesque Uni and each of yourselves as dancers. What was the story behind the two of you opening up this studio?
Rosie and Pastel: Burlesque Uni is a studio designed for dancers to explore the world of showgirls through the art of burlesque and various dance and fitness classes. The studio was opened as the city was lacking a space that not only focused on burlesque but also included extensive dance training that could lead to working showgirls.
Rosie: I grew up training in dance and completed a college program for commercial dance. I have since worked in various music videos, television series, films, and theatrical works. Burlesque is my main focus at the moment as Pastel and I work on our first two woman show and continue to teach at our studio.
Pastel: I was classically trained in contemporary dance and ballet. I “cross trained” in theater and acting for film and television. Over the years I’ve toured and performed globally both teaching and choreographing on the side. Returning to open my own company and now the Uni are the latest steps to my dance career.
Was opening up a studio something both of you have always wanted to do? What inspired you to teach?
Rosie: I started teaching dance as a teenager back in my hometown. I originally thought I would open a studio for kids and work with competitive dance students. After school, I fell into the world of burlesque and it was only a short amount of time until I began to teach burlesque and truely find my own style/brand.
Pastel: I started teaching to get my Love Letters Cabaret dancers to embody my style. Over time more people wanted to be in the know…and so it goes.
What has been the most challenging part about opening up your own studio?
Rosie and Pastel: Finding a suitable environment where our students can feel comfortable in costume, or bikinis, or however they choose to present themselves. A prime downtown location has been tricky. We are still growing and definitely still a work in progress.
What makes Burlesque Uni stand out from other fitness and dance classes that are available out there?
Rosie and Pastel: BurlesqueUni is unique in many ways. We focus on performance through interaction, flirting, seduction, and temptation. Our style comes from many different backgrounds; ballet, contemporary, jazz, urban, erotic dance. There really isn’t another studio like ours. Our space doesn’t even look like a dance studio; it’s covered in murals, costume props, and…pictures of us.
What kind of reaction do your students have at the end of your classes? Do you see a lot of confidence building with womxn especially?
Rosie and Pastel: Often students are surprised at how hard of a work out each class is and how much fun they can have while working out. Confidence comes with time, but with repetition our students become bombshells in no time.
What do you hope to impart to your students in the long run? How do you want to make them feel?
Rosie and Pastel: In the long run we hope our students feel fit, sexy, happy, and own a nice pair of heels. We want them to come to class feeling like they can say what they want, dance how they choose and leave feeling the exact same way.
For people who are feeling shy or afraid of taking burlesque lessons, what kind of advice would you give them in order to overcome their fears?
Rosie and Pastel: Just do it. Don’t think too hard. It’s a workout at first, striptease comes later if you so choose.