By day, Christen Malone works full time as catering director for HiCotton Hospitality, the company behind Ryan Rogers’ restaurants Feast BBQ, Royals Hot Chicken and Bar Vetti.
The job is both challenging and rewarding, and it keeps her immersed in the daily grind that goes into running and operating three successful restaurants in Louisville.
At night, Malone, 29, sometimes lets her hair down and slips into a role that is a bit more freeing. Since 2009, she’s been performing burlesque as Beatrix B. Naughty, dancing for several local companies throughout her career.
On Friday, April 13, Beatrix will host Louisville’s first-ever burlesque improv competition called “Boots Off Burly Brawl” at The Cure Lounge. It’ll pit 13 contestants from around the region and beyond in a contest to win Top Burlesque Star and $500 in cash.
Beatrix tells Insider that some of the contestants are flying in from Philadelphia, Kansas City and Cleveland for the event, and she hopes it continues as an annual or biannual event.
“It’s inspired by the ‘Shimmy Showdown’ in St. Louis that was created by the majesty herself, Lola Van Ella, who has had a heavy influence on the burlesque scene here,” she says.
That scene, she believes, is growing and growing each year.
“It’s been a long time coming, but it’s really making strides,” says Beatrix. “And it’s so fun to watch new characters join the mix. The melting pot of talent is growing, and I want people to think of Louisville as a rising, professional scene for burlesque.”
Beatrix recalls her early days with the Va Va Vixens, where she learned routines by watching, practicing and eventually doing.
“One of my first routines I remember putting together was with my acro partner at the time, and we did a gender-bender acro peel,” she says. “It felt invigorating to tell these stories with my body, and in the last 10 years, I have grown a lot.”
For now, Beatrix is working with her friend and co-producer Ethel Loveless on possibly building their own burlesque troupe, and she also enjoys performing with other companies in town as well.
“We like to promote healthy relationships with other producers, as we believe it builds strength within the community,” she adds.
Before Beatrix prepares to host Friday’s “Boots Off Burly Brawl,” she answered some very important questions …
What’s the most surprising thing on your Bucket List?
I am working on my “30 Before 30” list right now, and some things I have on there are learning Spanish and singing a solo karaoke song. I feel like I will get the Spanish before the karaoke though!
What poster was on your wall in junior high?
I definitely had a “Spice World” poster on my wall. I was obsessed.
If you were mayor, to whom would you give the key to the city?
I don’t really know what you get for having the key to the city, but it seems like a high honor. Probably my boss, Ryan Rogers. He is doing such amazing things for the service industry in Louisville, and it’s really cool to work for him.
What are your preferred pizza toppings?
I usually get the vegetarian pizza … and add sausage to it.
If you could be any age for a week, what would it be?
I have to say this is the happiest time of my life, and I truly enjoy my age being my age. Is that cheesy?
What famous person do people say you resemble the most?
Honestly, no one. I’ve been described as having classical beauty, though, and I think I prefer that much more.
Who would you most like to be stuck with in an elevator?
My best friend and co-producer Ethel Loveless. We can entertain ourselves for days!