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Three Burlesque Dancers Reveal Their Favorite Flicks

The biggest, wildest parties are held traditionally on New Year’s Eve and if there’s anyone who knows how to tap into that celebratory spirit, it’s the burlesque artist. So what are the movies that inspire them, influence them, and impress them? For two out of three, here’s a single surprising hint: Christopher Walken. Read on.

Helenpontani Name: Helen Pontani

Signature Song:
The theme from The Godfather

Signature Prop:
A rhinestone-covered Jack Daniels bottle

Official Website:

Top 3 Movies

1. Singin’ in The Rain: "I am deeply in love with Gene Kelly. I could watch him tap all day long."

2. Cabaret:  "After I saw Cabaret my life was never same. I wanted to move away from home, and become Sally Bowles."

3. Sunset Boulevard:   "Norma Desmond is a dream character: ‘I am big. It’s the pictures that got small.’"

  Jo Weldon

Signature Song: Prince’s "International Lover"

Signature Prop: A Godzilla head

Official Website:

Top 3 Movies

1. Slapshot: "The scene when Michael Ontkean is stripping his hockey uniform…shows how deeply embedded the idea of the striptease is in our culture."

2. Lenny:  Valerie Perinne gives "one of the best burlesque stripteases on film ever, set to a quintessential striptease song ‘Lament.’"

3. Pennies From Heaven :  "Christopher Walken makes the simple act of removing everyday clothes artistic."

Little Brooklyn

Signature Song: Biggie & Tupac’s "Where Brooklyn at"

Signature Prop: Googly eye pasties and hubcap fans

Official Website:

Top 3 Movies

1. Dance, Girl, Dance: "People might call me the ‘Lucille Ball of burlesque’ but the true Lucille Ball of burlesque was in fact Lucille Ball."

2. Pennies From Heaven : "Christopher Walken’s striptease number to ‘Let’s Misbehave’ is wonderfully choreographed, perfectly executed, and beautifully filmed."

3.  The Great Ziegfeld : "The drool-worthy continuously shot ‘A Pretty Girl Is Like a Melody’ sequence features a seemingly never-ending spiral absolutely littered with the dreamiest costumes on beautiful people."

(Images courtesy of The Pontani Sisters, Jo Weldon, and Little Brooklyn; photo of Little Brooklyn by Stacie Joy.)

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