Happening in Kansas City
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Oh, how quickly the weather changes and fall is upon us! And if it’s finally cooler outside, it must be time for the Kansas City Renaissance Festival. This month I caught up with Annie Cherry, the talented performer who is making appearances at the festival, in Bonner Springs. If you know Annie, you know what a colorful character she is! If not, you’ll soon learn that her interests in performance are wide and varied and that her personality sparkles through in everything that she does.
1. I understand that you are a burlesque performer. When and how did you first become involved in burlesque?
Well, like most of the wonderful things that have happened in my life, I pretty much stumbled into it. I had been performing a bit as a belly dancer, and I caught wind of a burlesque production with a live band that was getting ready to start production, so I got brave and talked my way into it. That was around 2005. Burlesque turned out to be my theater gateway drug, and from there I began involving myself in various theatrical and film projects, emceeing events and even performing marriage ceremonies. I love a good adventure, and I love trying out new forms of self-expression, but burlesque has a special place in my heart like any first love.
2. What do you love most about performing burlesque?
In my opinion, burlesque done right is short-form theater, and it’s usually parody to some extent. It’s a performance art celebration of human sensuality, whether it’s comedic or sincere. I love the limitless options for self-expression, the taboo nature of the thing, and the focus on feminine power and visibility.
3. I know that you teach burlesque as well. What tips might you give me if I wanted to perform for my partner (or my cat)?
One: Remember that when you’re in the spotlight, literally or figuratively, you own the moment. That is YOUR moment.
Two: Your audience (man, woman, or beast) will look where you are looking, so guide their gaze with yours. Don’t be afraid of direct eye contact, even though cats are terrible at it.
And three: Enjoy yourself. That’s the biggest secret, enjoying yourself. (That might be the secret to everything.)
4. During the summer, you were in Dykes of Hazzard at Missie B’s. How did you become involved with the show?
I asked to be involved, and they agreed. I’m a big proponent of the philosophy of, “If you don’t ask, they can’t say yes.” Ron Megee has believed in me as a performer since my very beginnings, performing at his loft nearly 10 years ago. I have worked with Ron and the other writers and producers, Jessica Dressler and Chadwick Brooks, on multiple occasions, and they know just what kind of shenanigans I’m capable of!
5. How was the show received?
We received an overwhelmingly positive response from our audiences, with an almost 100 percent sell-out of the entire run. Late Night Theatre audiences are the best in Kansas City! So much fun was had on and off stage.
6. What are your current and upcoming projects?
Just now I am mid-Kansas City Renaissance Festival, where I play one of the women of Madam Red’s Brothel. The brothel characters are portrayed as strong, independent, sensual beings, so my role there goes along quite nicely with the other theatrical projects I am involved with. The festival runs through Columbus Day this year.
Teaching curious, courageous women how to embrace the performer within is my pet project at the moment. We are mid-session of my Awesome Burlesque 101 beginning burlesque class. It’s so very exciting!
I co-write and co-produce a bi-monthly series at Missie B’s called The Night Cap. The show follows the classic late-night talk show format, featuring many stars of the Kansas City performing arts community. Some appear as themselves and some as characters that they’ve created. It’s always a hilarious, great time. Past guests have included Victor & Penny, Katie Gilchrist, Ron Megee and Jon Fulton Adams, David Ford, Daisy Buckët, Michael Byars, the Latenight Callers, Rex Hobart, comedian Martin Plant, and many more.
Beyond that, I am producing another bi-monthly show, Burlesque on the Rocks, at the Buffalo Room. Currently, my assistant producer, Sara Hadley (aka Sara d’Joue), and I are working on two special features over the Halloween weekend! The shows feature classic and neo-burlesque tribute numbers to the music of our favorite rock-and-roll artists. So far we have featured Led Zeppelin and Jimi Hendrix.
You can find out more about all of my productions, classes, and various involvements at AnnieCherry.com.
7. Where do you find inspiration for your performances?
People inspire me, especially other artists, no matter which discipline they create in. Musicians, painters, dancers
After the last 2 years of dealing with the pandemic and packing on those COVID pounds here are some motivational quotes that can be the spark plugs to our wellness engines. You can have a full tank of gas, a clean carburetor, all the fluids topped off, and 300 horsepower of Detroit’s finest under the hood, but you’re going nowhere without that initial spark. In your quest for well-being, you need a catalyst to move you from idle to ideal. Here are some motivational jolts to inspire you to get your health and fitness vehicle moving.
Make time for exercise each dayPhoto by Victor Freitas on Unsplash
Thomas Paine said, “The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.” You will have conflicts with making time for exercise each day. The treadmill will conflict with your enjoyment of the living-room couch and its fluffy pillows. Your body will engage in conflict with dumbbells and exercise balls as it seeks better health. Embrace these conflicts with excitement, and walk through the smoke and fire. Triumph is waiting on the other side.
Marathon runnersPhoto by Miguel A. Amutio on Unsplash
John F. Kennedy said, “Things do not happen. Things are made to happen.” The firefighter’s 55-pound weight loss did not just happen one day on a call. The computer programmer’s success in the Chicago Marathon did not just happen on a Sunday in October. The 4th grade teacher’s significant drop in cholesterol level did not just happen the day before spring break. These people made things happen…and it took time.
Ralph Marston of The Daily Motivator website, wrote, “What you do today can improve all your tomorrows.” Let today be the first day in 28 years without a cigarette. Stay an extra five minutes on the recumbent bike at the gym today. Start training today for the three-day breast cancer walk that is scheduled for the fall. Tomorrow is always waiting to see what you put in your piggy bank today. Invest wisely and watch the dividends grow.
Full MoonPhoto by CHUTTERSNAP on Unsplash
Jill McLemore once said, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you will land amongst the stars.” Set that goal to trim 75 pounds from your body. Only losing 42 pounds puts you way out there with the North Star. Aim to run 750 miles this year. Coming up 68 miles short will still put you past that former planet Pluto and on your way to the Orion constellation. Dropping eight waist sizes by Christmas instead of the projected 10 will let you glow with the luminescence of several brilliant wonders in the sky. By the way, I think there’s a full moon tonight!
Zig Ziglar stated, “You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.” Tom Cruise was another aspiring pretty face in Hollywood about 30 years ago before starting to audition for parts in TV shows. Jared Fogle was a morbidly obese college student at Indiana University in the 1990s before beginning his Subway diet. Mark Zuckerberg was just another starry-eyed Ivy Leaguer until he began to implement a social network idea. They all have that common bond: They started something.
These motivational quotes should help get your wellness engine running and once your car is started there’s no telling where your health and fitness can go. Don't forget to end me a postcard when you get there!
This health and fitness article is brought to you by that guy who’s sneaky like a black hole and bright like a nebula. My name is Ron Blake and I can be found playing with my telescope at email@example.com.
Curative has announced that it is currently providing COVID-19 no-cost testing in your area at Metropolitan Community College.
Stay safe and get tested!
You can schedule COVID-19 Test at curative.com, and receive results in 24-48 hours.
Curative is the leading provider of COVID-19 testing in the United States. Curative’s mission is to end the COVID-19 pandemic by providing simple-to-use and painless testing at scale to produce reliable data for patients and health officials. We know that broad access to testing, robust contact tracing, and a vaccine are necessary to end the pandemic.
Is there any cost?
Regarding the tests, there is no out of pocket cost to the individual. Through the CARES act, all individuals with health insurance will be covered for a COVID-19 test. No one is ever charged a copay or deductible.
For uninsured individuals, they are covered under the HRSA fund under the CARES act. Curative will never send a bill to any individual getting a COVID-19 test through any of our testing sites.
How soon do I get the results?
Curative provides results within 24 hours of arrival at our lab (if not sooner). We pride ourselves on our ability to distribute tests rapidly, test patients easily, and send them their results quickly. Other highlights include:
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Curative believes that communal well-being is fundamental to individual health.
Curative is building infrastructure to make essential health services easier to access for everyone. Their infrastructure is designed to change as the world does—offering nearby access, affordable services, and science-based guidance.
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“I wish I could work out, too, but I just don’t have the motivation!”
Give me a dollar for every time I’ve heard that and I’d be in Cabo San Lucas with an umbrella drink right now. Let’s identify a few of your motivations to get you on the right path. They are there … you just need to realize them so you can make it a great 2022.
How about getting healthy so you can be at that Christmas celebration in 30 years with all the family gathered around and exchanging presents? There will be nieces, nephews, brothers, sisters, children and maybe some grandchildren, all enjoying the sounds and sights of the season. That would be amazing!
How about being healthy so you can watch the first man land on Mars in 2030? You hear all the talk about preparing for a mission to Mars, but it will be a long time in coming. Just think if you were alive and well to see it happen!
How about being healthy so you can attend that 60-year class reunion? It might even be nice to walk into the function with a spring in your step and a glow of health about you! Many of your classmates will have walked past St. Peter and those pearly gates by that time, but you can give yourself a chance to stay here with some proactive measures.
How about being healthy so you can spend more time being relaxed and retired? It would be awesome to just not have to do anything you didn’t want to do! Get up every day and use that watch they gave you as a fashion accessory only. With a healthy body, you can spend ample time in the lap of leisure well into your 90s.
How about being healthy so you can walk your dog with your grandkids or great-nephews after that Thanksgiving meal many years down the road? It will be so cool to have that turkey dinner with all the relatives, but it’ll be even more fun to be able to move around without having to catch your breath between steps.
How about being healthy so you can continue to enjoy vibrant sunsets, thrilling football games, colorful leaves in the fall, summer barbecues, or birthday cards in the mail?
Everyone can find the motivation to work out! You just have to identify which motivation will get you to your starting line each day and which will help you get to your daily finish line.
There are plenty of great things to enjoy in life. Find your motivation and start earning your frequent flyer miles for your healthy life. Then soar into the future with excitement about what will be!
This article of motivation is brought to you by a guy who knows a good thing when he sees it. That guy of good vision is Ron Blake, and he can be spotted on that bright horizon at firstname.lastname@example.org.