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Burlesque 101: The Essential Burlesque Dance Series

with Headmistress Jo Weldon and Superstar Guest Instructors!

About This ClassDetailsDress Code
Register NowStudents on Stage!


Sundays, 1:30-3:00 pm EST, on Zoom.
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We will be offering our legendary Essential Burlesque series in an online version for the first time. Classes will take place on Zoom.

Essential Burlesque will not be happening in the studio in August 2020, but we will be live on Zoom!
Additions to our calendar will all be listed on the index page of this site and announced on our Instagram account at @nyschoolofburlesque.

The Essential Burlesque series of four theory and movement classes is online in September 2020! Make your selection from the dropdown menu below, or sign up for all 4 for a discount. $15 each or $50 for all four. You'll receive a Zoom invitation the day of the class.
If you haven't received your zoom invitation by half an hour before class time on the day of any class for which you are registered, let us know by emailing Be sure to state the name of the class.

Sundays in October 2020:

Essential Burlesque Online October 2020

Class recordings are sent to students to watch, good for one week after class. Students will also receive written materials and links to additional in-depth recordings for all the elements of Classic Moves, including pastie-making!

Individual Class Descriptions
Striptease Expertise
A lecture on the theatrics and psychology of striptease, followed by exercises to get you into a seductive groove.
Jo will go over her 15-point toolbox for making your striptease effective! If you've never done a striptease before, this will put you at ease. If you're an experienced performer, it will refresh and renew you!
Props: a hoodie that zips and open down the front or a button down shirt (two demos will be offered so you can use both).
Chair Dance And Stocking Peel
Jo will guide you through a simple but sexy chair dance, using a basic folding chair. You can use any chair that doesn't have arms. You'll learn a full routine, plus stocking peel tips and a bit of hairography!
Props: a pair of stretch stockings. Wear shorts or a leotard so you have bare legs.More details
Fan Dance
Jo will teach a choreographed fan dance with small marabou fans, then demonstrate a series of signature moves with large ostrich fans.
Props: small fans or other objects to use in place of fans, such as folders; if you have large ostrich fans, bring 'em!
Classic Moves
Learn a full burlesque routine with boa moves, glove peels, bumps n grinds, and tassel twirls!
Props: Six- foot boa or scarf, gloves (Jo will be using strretch satin opera gloves), back-hooking bra, tasseled pasties.
Props for the class


just added a FREE five-minute (really!) pastie-making tutorial on our blog!
Check it out!


If you are taking the series, you can watch the classes as demos or you can get props. See the individual class descriptions for needed supplies.

VERY IMPORTANT -- PLEASE LET US KNOW IF YOU HAVE NOT RECEIVED YOUR ZOOM INVITATION LESS THAN ONE HOUR BEFORE THE CLASS BEGINS. Due to the logistics of teaching online from home, registration ends at noon on the day of classes. Email if you have not received your zoom invitation.

These class times are for Eastern Standard Time.

You may want to have reading materials! You'll find the routines from Fan Dance and Classic Moves in the The Burlesque Handbook, as well as pastie-making instructions.

Preregistration is required for all NYSB classes. By paying to register you agree to comply with our payment, refund, and class transfer policies. No refunds for online classes in April unless we have to cancel.

the information below is provided in case you are waiting until we return to the studio to take the series in NYC.

Essential Burlesque is required before taking Act Development. We also require Performance Fundamentals before taking Act Development.

In this series you'll learn several group routines that show you how classic burlesque works, while learning to handle unqiue burlesque props such as chairs, boas, gloves, tassels, and feather fans! No matter what your level, this is the only series that will teach you the fundamentals of burlesque movement.
If you know the moves in this series and you want to create a solo routine to perform, sign up for the Get Your Act Together Series. In that series, you can create any kind of routine, from the most outrageous neo to the most seductive classic routine. The Essential Burlesque Series and the Get Your Act Together Series are a great combination if you want to immerse yourself in burlesque. If you want to learn a group routine to perform in the students showcase, take Flirting With Burlesque.

Classes include:
Striptease Expertise: Go deep into the powerful mysteries of striptease psychology and logistics. Learn a showgirl strut. After this class you'll be able to take off anything, even a hoodie, with mesmerizing style! Bring a button down shirt or hoodie that unzips all the way down the front.
Stocking and Chair: Learn to peel stockings and do basic sexy chair dance moves! Bring a pair of stockings with you, and wear shorts or a leotard.
Fan Dance: You'll play with glorious feather fans! Bring your cameras for this one so you can get a selfie with the fans!
Classic Moves: Get ready to do an entire burlesque routine! Secrets of showgirl posing and attitude, plus boa play, glove peels, bump n grind, and the glorious, outrageous tassel twirl! Bring a back-hooking bra with you.
Note: Class order may vary, so please consult with your instructor about which one is upcoming
Suited for women and femme only. We honor your identity and pronouns.

If you have any questions, please email

Please let us know if you have a gift certificate and we can help you apply it to any class including this one!

You'll learn the authentic burlesque moves that make burlesque so much fun: the tantalizing glove peel, the sexy shimmy, the devastating bump n grind, the dazzling tassel-twirl and more! You'll be shimmying, peeling, and rocking it, performing an entire burlesque routine in the very first class. You'll get the basics of the history of burlesque and striptease as an artform. There will be tips on costuming, getting gigs, the history of the Burlesque Hall of Fame and burlesque in Coney Island, where to see burlesque shows in NYC, and more!

You do not need to be a performer or planning to perform to take these classes, though performance theory will be discussed in class. This series is suitable for beginners, as well as for dancers or other types of performers curious about the language of burlesque.

Created by the author of The Burlesque Handbook!

Check us out on the Headmistress's Instagram!

Preregistration required for all NYSB classes. By paying to register you agree to comply with our payment, refund, and class transfer policies.
Registration is strictly limited to ensure the quality of the class. If you are registering with a friend, please register together to ensure that you both get in. Email us at schoolofburlesque at gmail dot com if you receive a notice that the class is sold out; we may be able to fit you in if there is a cancellation.
We recommend registering immediately if you are interested. Once you sign up for the class, please bookmark this page for reference.

There is a certificate of completion issued for taking all four classes in this series. However, it cannot be mailed or picked up--in order to receive it you must be in the final date of the four classes of your series, as this is the only time the certificates are issued. There are no certificates for partial completion of the series.

About This Class

Get in touch with the history of sensual, magnetic, powerful women, and become part of that history yourself in the the series that started the the NYSB! Enjoy the sparkle of rhinestones, the flash of fringe, the feathery dreamy drop of a boa...

New York School of Burlesque Headmistress Jo Weldon has learned directly from the fierce and fabulous ladies who performed during the magical golden age of twentieth century striptease, and has taught these movements, principles and styles to NYSB instructors. Although it has been honed over time, this is the same series that has helped produce some of burlesque's most popular new performers over the past five years!

This class series is for women and trans/binary only.
Register Now!

Dress Code

Wear clothes you would work out in or take dance class in. Skirts are not recommended, nor are flowy sleeves or pantlegs. Yoga or dance class clothes are great. Bring two pairs of shoes if you like, one with high heels and one without. See class schedule below for specific classwear requirements. We also recommend you wear layers as the venue temperature fluctuates—bars and dance studios are notorious for this. Boas, gloves, and pasties will be provided for use during class.

We recommend you purchase The Burlesque Handbook to accompany this class. This is the first-ever book on how to create a burlesque routine written by NYSB Headmistress and Founder Jo Weldon. Includes pastie-making instructions, information about how to choose music, how to put together a costume, and more! Purchase now on!

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The calendar below is constantly being updated.