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Drag-Tastic!!! Funny Girls & Funny Boys
Funny Girls (Blackpool)
Member Name: sdean
Funny Girls (Blackpool)
Advantages: Excellent price, excellent show, Jade & Amber
Disadvantages: NONE !!!
Funny Girls is based in Blackpool on Dickson Road near the North Pier and Blackpool North stations. It is part of a company called ITP Leisure (In The Pink), which owns a group of Gay and Gay friendly bars and clubs around the Blackpool area.
~What is it?~
This is the type of show you would have to fork out over £40 to see in the West End of London. It is perfectly choreographed dance / singing numbers - which are mimed (remember they are all men!) by a team of fantastic dancers (some in drag, some not). They will include all your favourites that have played at the cinema's , theatre's over time. Including songs from Hairspray, Chicago, Thoroughly Modern Millie and loads more, they will also have choreographed dances to 'modern' songs. All in full drag, not a scrap of make up out of place, perfect miming (that even Britney couldn't do) and with it there are laughs all the way.
DJ Zoe is your Master of Ceremonies for the evening; nothing gets through without Zoe knowing. Zoe is also dressed in drag and always has a fantastic variety of dresses and shoes which would make any girl jealous. Zoe stands on her pedestal stage left and will play music and talk with the crowd from 8pm until the first 'act', she will then carry on playing music in between each act and after the finale. Beware, she can be a devil. If you look like you can take it she will take the p*ss, it's all light hearted and good fun. Word of warning, if you don't want to be talked about do not approach stage left!!
Betty 'Legs' Diamond
BLD also known as Simon Green is the choreographer and 'lead' dancer of Funny Girls, he takes the lead role very seriously I've heard and likes the cabaret to be perfect! Hence his poor overworked team of dancers! But they always produce the best show that has kept me going back more and more. BLD brings a comedic edge to an otherwise astounding performance and seems to bring the same amount of energy night after night 6 nights a week.
Jade & Amber
Jade & Amber are Betty's support dancers, they take turns in leads when she is away on holiday and they provide fantastic back up support. They have been with Funny Girls for years and are best friends. Fascinating fact - Amber was taught to dance by lead dancer Mark a long time ago and has not looked back - I think she is the only one who is not a trained dancer! Amazing. They often look better in their costumes than anyone else and frequently have straight men questioning their sexuality!
The Boys change frequently, I don't think the girls like to keep the same ones on too long! Mark is the Dance Captain for the boys and wears top hat and tails well and is a Funny Girls stalwart. He always looks like a gentleman and is one in real life as well! Usually there are 3 or 4 males dancers in the show and choreography changes if less male dancers are on stage.
The bar staff and waitresses are what they call 'Bar Trannies' or 'Follies'.
If you frequent Funny Girls you will get to know a few of their faces, but they do change around often. They always look immaculate, well groomed and ready for a performance, when in fact they probably only get paid regular bar wages (and those dancers tights cost a fortune!!)
For the Finale some of the bar staff, DJ Zoe and the regular dancers all take part, which makes for an interesting show. Especially as Zoe has changed hair and you are trying to spot where she is!
The restaurant at the rear is 'Garbo's' which can be reserved for pre show dinner to make the night in one place. I have never been in here, only had food on an ad hoc basis inbetween parts of the show which was ok, very chicken and chips and not gourmet food by any stretch of the imagination, but it will line the stomach.. If you book dinner there beforehand you will be given things like a choice of soup or pate for starter, and chicken, lamb, salmon, pork or vegetarian main course with a choice of sides. This would be great if you have a lot of people to make sure were in the right place, but at only £16 per head, not bad!
Funny Girls is currently housed in the old Odeon, which Basil Newby (Owner of ITP leisure) redecorated to be in a more Art Deco style and had the seating changed so that the upstairs balcony was a seated area with waitress service, the front stalls of the cinema have been completely removed to become a standing / dancing area. And the rear stalls have been made into a small tiered seating area complete with waitress service. At the very front you have a stage (where the screen was) and directly in front is the bar.
Doors open Tues-Sun at 7pm, where you can go in, get a spot and get a drink.
DJ Zoe comes on stage at 8pm
The show commences at 8.30pm
Show Finale is at 11pm.
Each day has a different price Tues- Thurs expect to pay only £3.50 to get in. I know bargain!! Fri, Sat and Sunday it is from £5-£8, still very cheap, with drinks at regular pub prices you can afford to go there more than once!! To be seated you will pay £11 Tues-Thurs and I'm not sure how much it is on a weekend, but it will be a little more.
~Is it Safe?~
Some people will worry this is a 'Gay' venue and they will look or feel 'out of place'. This venue is 'Gay Friendly'. This means that it is predominantly a 'straight' venue, however they accept gay people. This does also mean that if people are to be found snogging each others faces off, the lovely door staff will politely ask you to stop, gay or straight. This also stands for unsavoury characters. There are a few hen parties that will come to Funny Girls and after drinking lots sometimes people get a bit rowdy. In all my times there I have noticed people being a nuisance, then disappearing. The slightest hint of trouble, people are removed, I think this comes from where they have gay staff, they are protecting them against any 'would be' homophobes.
The show is over before midnight and there will be taxi's outside the main entrance which is also staffed with doormen to make sure you get safely home. However if you want to take your pick of gay or straight clubs there are plenty around.
Funny Girls is one of my favourite places to go in the world. I really enjoy theatre and stage shows, and you can get a mixed bag here. If you enjoy musicals, you will love it, theatre, you will love it, music, dance, a drink. You will love it. Do not be afraid to approach the bar, sometimes a 6 foot hottie in heels will deter you but be brave, they will only have a go if you are nasty. But they more often than not will have a laugh with you. DJ Zoe will swear at times and perhaps tell a couple of crude jokes, the shows are not particularly crude, they will have funny dancing bits and funny faces, but probably nothing your granny wouldn't enjoy. I often see people with a few generations of their family in tow, who all have a great time, so this shows it is great for everyone!
For the entrance price you get a fantastic show, more people should go in the week to support this great show as it sometimes looks a little sad for all the hard work the dancers are doing!
Also look out for the great carpet on your way in ! Brilliant!
Summary: Excellent show everyone should visit at least once !