Famed for bringing burlesque to London’s West End with ‘The Hurly Burly Show’, burlesque star Miss Polly Rae brings a brand new show, Between the Sheets, to the city’s Underbelly Festival.

The show – which sees the flame-haired Miss Polly Rae act as compere, chanteuse and producer – seeks to explore the darker, more taboo elements of sex and fantasy through the medium of burlesque. However, when that medium is artfully removing lingerie down to tiny rotating nipple tassels, there was never really going to be too many boundary-breaking surprises here.
Between The Sheets was a fun night out with rare moments when the rowdy mix of ­disrobing truly saw comedy mixed with carnality. Lilly Snatchdragon’s risque take on “I’d Do Anything” from Oliver! and some 90s and early 00s background music corkers like Craig David and Another Level, were moments where the striving for naughtiness didn’t feel so strenuous.
The highlight of the evening had to be a moment of quiet when the two male dancers performed a beautiful, balletic dance together to the captivating Two Men In Love” by Jamie McDermott’s art-pop outfit The Irrepressibles.
The song; a beautiful, intimate confession of the powerful love between two men in the face of a rejecting world felt not only pertinent, but also provided the ideal backing to the intense and moving choreography performed by Tom Cunningham and Callum McDonald.

Starting with slow sweeping movements, the two dancers entwine in and out of hold to a rousing ending that mirrors the songs euphoric ending where a chorus of choral refrains meets a polyphonic string arrangement.

Of all of the sex, the UV bum cheeks, the bondage horseplay and the double-entendre, this perhaps felt like the most transgressive moment, illustrating how romantic love between men is still rarely portrayed in mainstream culture.
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High art this is not, but the show’s stars and material provides a refreshingly tongue in cheek alternative to the outside world.
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So, step away from the harsh realities of life, find solace in the bosom of Miss Polly Rae and step into her stimulating celebration of the human form.


Miss Polly Rae: Between the Sheets is on until 29 September at the Underbelly Festival at London’s Southbank. Click here to book your tickets.

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Miss Polly Rae: Between the Sheets reviewed
4.0Overall Score