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Tags:   Babes,   Going out,   Creative women,   Theatre

By Colin Fitz   -  January 12, 2015

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Photo credit:  Natalia Randle

UNDINE LAVERVE is 23 years old and of Russian and Dutch descent. In recent years she has made her mark on Malta’s nightlife with her burlesque shows, a type of risque’ entertainment that had surely been missing from the island since the time British and American military forces used to be stationed here. SWAG sat down for a chat with the self-proclaimed 'Sin-sational Siren of the Mediterranean'.


Tell us about your education, your career and how you ended up where you are today.


I’ve been studying music – piano and singing, dance and acting from a very young age. My mother is a professional photographer, so I learnt how to pose for photos naturally being her subject for as long as I can remember.


I started modelling in Malta at the age of 16, at first for fun, but then it became more serious. Now I’m a model representing the Vampire Freaks community that is based in New York City and operates worldwide.

In 2009 I met a Canadian Burlesque performer called Liv Yorsten who became my mentor and while in Malta, taught me as much as she could before she moved back. From then on I’ve developed my style by working on it both on the island and abroad, and I now perform Burlesque internationally. I also model internationally and study musical theatre in Malta.



How did you end up in Malta?


I was brought up between cities, predominantly in London. I spent my childhood moving around with my parents but eventually it was time to settle down, and from secondary school all through higher education I’ve lived in Malta. The island is my home and my base, from here I travel, sometimes for long periods of time, but no matter where I go, I always come back here because I love Malta too much to stay away for too long.



Are there any musical/theatre/modelling stars that have inspired you and who you try to emulate?


I am inspired by many Burlesque performers as well as alternative and fetish models – the obvious being Dita Von Teese, Dirty Martini, Mosh, Bianca Beauchamp and many others; but I believe that every performer or model should have their own personality and look, so I never try to copy or repeat someone else’s work, style or ideas. I work on my acts and my shoots meticulously, putting together and making my own costumes, outfits, and always doing my own styling. I take pride in creating unique work.



What have been your best achievements in your career so far?


I am best known for being a Burlesque performer and my alternative modelling. I could talk about the obvious achievements – I’ve won a Burlesque competition and two awards this year, performed in numerous Burlesque festivals, represented the VampireFreaks.com community as a model, hosted events, modelled for a fetish fashion designer, starred in a make-up ad in 2013, as well as been featured in a number of music videos for bands like Red Electric. I’ve also done some TV work and had a small role in a Maltese movie. But for me, achievement is also how far I’ve gotten on a personal level and how much I’ve grown as a person through my travels, experiences and encounters.

Since I went International in 2012, my whole perception and philosophy of the world have changed. I’ve become a much happier and fulfilled person and learnt to love myself and be comfortable in my own skin and with my body just the way it is, through Burlesque and general involvement in the arts. Now I teach confidence, femininity and empowerment, along with dance moves, through the art of Burlesque. It’s obviously quite a sensual form of expression; therefore self-esteem and freedom are essential.



What are your current projects and the latest news from your career?


I'm currently in the process of setting up BAM – The Burlesque Academy of Malta. Meanwhile, I have started a collaboration with Adolf Anastasi to organize monthly Burlesque and Vaudeville shows in his wine bar and lounge, called Mezzanin. The show is entitled ‘Burlesque a La Verve’ and runs every last Saturday of the month. I headline the shows along with a different foreign performer every month while Australian showgirl Cherry Bomb and girls from my troupe Kabuki Guns Burlesque Malta will also take to the stage. We will feature live music, comedy and much more. Join us for our first show on 31 January!



Do you have any funny or embarrassing stories from your career so far?


Last October I was on tour in Italy and Poland: two weekends, two shows each. In Rome after one of the shows I saw my tutu skirt on someone’s head… it then proceeded to slowly move through the crowd and out of the club…however, in contrast, in Poland the opposite happened – I threw my stockings into the crowd twice during my act and twice, the audience passed the stocking all the way back to me, leaving them on the edge of the stage. How kind of them!



What’s your ambition?


I believe in ‘dreaming larger than life’ and am very ambitious. For now I’ll just say that I’m hoping to do more International work, more foreign festivals and competitions and am working on bigger and better acts. My aim for next year is that our shows on the island are successful – I believe that artists are meant to push boundaries and broaden people’s minds – It's our duty after all. I also aim to increase the amount of singing I put into my shows.



Who is your ideal man, and what must he do to woo you?


My ideal man must wine me, dine me and intellectually stimulate me.



Finally, what would be your ideal date?


My ideal date would have to be exciting and interesting, preferably shared with a fascinating individual, filled with thought-provoking discussions and good wine. Throw in some sultry jazz music like ‘Harlem Nocturne’ into the equation and I am won! Alternatively, we could have dinner and then go to a metal gig.

Undine LaVerve performs in Paris

Undine LaVerve's showreel

Undine LaVerve performs in Moscow

Behind the scenes at an Undine LaVerve photoshoot


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