Sunday, September 25, 2011

Interview: Onur Karaozbek ~ Gallery Burlesque

As I wrap up my series on Gallery Burlesque for The Sydney Fringe Festival, I wanted to share one last interview with you. Meet the one, the only, Onur Karaozbek, also affectionately known by the Gallery Burlesque family as Papa GB. Without Onur, there would be no Gallery Burlesque, no magical nights of music, art, poetry & Burlesque rolled into one for Sydneysiders to enjoy...


When & how did GB come together (begin its journey)?
I never called myself an artist but family and friends have been kind enough to label me one… So as an individual in the arts field, like many others, I have felt the need for more avenues to create and show all forms of art… Being in the performance and burlesque area was a bonus I guess when I started doing my Art Gallery nights. I started the nights over 2 years ago but it came to a solid form as Gallery Burlesque late December 2009.

How do you find/scout your performers or do they tend to find you?
We are a small community in Sydney… and with ties to the other burlesque communities around Australia. Gallery Burlesque is not just a regular burlesque event; but a family of creators, artists, dancers and performers and knowing this I try to learn more about every performer that is around and try to see if any of them have similar values of Gallery Burlesque in core and creation. In result we get together to entertain and share experiences. In saying that I am always open for people to contact me too…

How would you describe the show you're putting on for The Sydney Fringe? Is there a theme running through the show?
Well for the fringe; art and burlesque share a kiss and invite music over for a ménage à trois, the biggest line up of burlesque in the fringe festival with art and music. A true gathering of fringe artists creating a fringe show!

One thing is that our regular GB events never have a theme; it’s an art show from the art works on the walls to the burlesque on stage and the music on decks… Unique, different and varied for all kinds of tastes… Our special GB events that we do once every few months do work on a theme such as our new show “Secret Identity” which is a cosplay / super hero burlesque event.

What do you think the general public, who may not have seen burlesque before, believe burlesque to be about? Is this what GB has to offer or far from it?!!
This is a question asked over and over again and I have tried not to answer as it creates a massive debate… but all I can say is our grandparents knew about it and enjoyed it long before us. Anticipate nothing, expect everything we have a lot on offer…

What do you hope The Sydney Fringe audience will get out of the GB show?
Head spins, heart palpitations, mind melts, eye pops, joy, entertainment and a unique experience… as well as a few gifts and free drinks for the lucky ones all night long!


A huge thank you to Onur and the gorgeous Gallery Burlesque performers who shared a little of their selves with us here; Memphis Mae, Cherry Lush, Evie Va Voom, Frankie Faux & Betty Grumble.

If you live in Sydney, you won't want to miss their final Sydney Fringe show on Wednesday 28th September at Civic Underground.
More details here.

~ Clare x

Photo courtesy of Gallery Burlesque


  1. I live in Italy :( so Really intresring this interewiev

  2. Great interview Clare!
    Have a pretty day!

  3. oooh, great series. I will need to grab a cuppa and read through them all.... i have been taking down time, but time to catch up I see!!
    hope all is well with you!


  4. Great interview! Have a wonderful day, Kellie xx


Thanks for sharing on Soulful Mama ~ Clare x