Burlesque star Dita Von Teese still has surprises up her sexy sleeve

By Madeleine Marr

Dita Von Teese
Dita Von Teese

Sin is in.

And there’s no better woman to prove that than Dita Von Teese.

On Tuesday night, she played philanthropist, donating 100 general admission tickets and their proceeds to Houston for Tropical Storm Harvey relief.

The burlesque queen will bring her over the top striptease act “The Art of the Teese” to the Fillmore Miami Beach Friday night.

Von Teese’s sexy moves remain the same, but the show has gone through some tweaks. Expect plenty of lace, corsets, and stockings from the sizzling fashionista. The one major change: Von Teese has gone back to her blond roots.

“I’ve been dying my hair for as long as I can remember, probably the last 25 years,” said the Michigan native before her trip. “People know me for my black hair and pale skin. I’ve fantasized about doing this and it’s a nice unexpected twist when the audience first sees me.”

OK, the secret’s out, but there are surprises in store.

“TAOTT” promises to bring you “an opulent evening of glamour and seduction,” reads a release.

Dita will be performing some of her best-loved acts and some new routines that have never been seen on tour before.

Take Von Teese’s most famous prop — the giant glass she slinks around in on stage. It’s definitely still in the picture, but this updated champagne coupe is gilded and bedazzled with Swarovski crystals.

“This is probably the most ambitious glass we’ve done so far,” she explained of her signature accessory. “There’s this giant sponge strawberry inside. It’s beautiful.”

Every time she goes on tour, the Your Beauty Mark author thinks about various ways to, um, please spectators.

“I think of someone like Madonna when we plan the choreography. The way she does ‘Like A Virgin’ differently every time. I try to reinvent myself and really push the envelope.”

At 44, Von Teese still has the moves —and sleek physique.

“Physically, I make sure I’m as strong as possible,” said the Pilates fan, adding she is opting for more weight training and yoga lately. “I work out at an actual gym now. I walk around and see all the men doing their thing and it’s entertaining. Fascinating actually. You have to like what you do to have that motivation.”

Since starting out in 1992 as a headliner at strip clubs and fetish parties, Von Teese has seen a lot of changes over the years.

“I feel like the audience has shifted,” she said. “It used to be predominantly male and a lot of couples too. But now I’m looking out at this wonderful, diverse atmosphere — the LGBQ community as well as eccentric pinup girls and drag queens. It’s a beautiful thing. I’m having the time of my life.”

The sometime actress especially excited about bringing her act to The Fillmore.

“The production level is something that is really important to me. We bring our own curtains, lights, music. I have a semi truck packed to the gills. We build out every scene. We need to have the right sizing to make it work and I think it works.”