Breast Show – Busting Out – Thanks for the Mammaries
By: Rolf Holbach
Busting Out - Breasts, Boobs, Bosoms, Jugs, Melons, Tits, Rack, Sweater Puppies, whatever you want to call them…half the world has them, and the other half wants to look at them. That’s why Australian musical stage actress and comedienne, Emma Powell, wrote a show about them called “Busting Out”, which Cynthia and I and a few other SCNA members saw a few weeks ago.
What started in 2006 as a one-woman show has evolved to the present two-woman show, with several different productions and duos playing across Australia, New Zealand, and England. During its 5-year run it has been seen by over 250,000 people. Most of the audiences have been women, which may say something about the anatomical anxiety of men.
This Los Angeles production stars Emma, and another very talented musical comedienne, Mandi Lodge. The 2-hour show was hilarious, good-natured, and ribald. Through song, sketches, word play, and tacky jokes, it unabashedly celebrated women’s bodies, specifically breasts, in all their glory.
For most of the audience, after the initial shock of seeing two middle-aged, plus-sized women expose their D-plus cups, they soon begin to realize that with their charisma, comedic timing, vocal and physical talents, Emma and Mandi successfully satirize the female form without sexualizing it. As Emma said in an interview, “Our show demystifies and celebrates what women actually really look like under their bras, and allows us all to share a good laugh at ourselves in the process.”
Of course it helps when the women revealed they had affectionately named their breasts Hillary & Condoleezza, and Starsky & Hutch.
The two women also like to involve the audience. Since Cynthia and I were in the second row, I was picked out by Mandi early as her comedic foil throughout the show.
Later, they came down and picked Brian out of the audience, and brought him onstage to get fitted in their Russian bra fitter sketch. Three female audience members were later brought up to compete, and see who could remove her bra the fastest, without taking her shirt off.
Their sketches ranged from a shopping channel sequence, to a rap song about mammograms, to a Chinese lactation consultant that resulted in the first few rows getting squirted, and a full on shower for me.
Throughout the show they playfully transformed their boobs into doughnuts, crying babies, sniffer dogs, burgers, and ABBA performing “Mamma Mia”. At one point they brought out a screen and engaged in shadow play to simulate the Taj Mahal, Batman’s Bat emblem, and to parody what happens when Dean Martin sings “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” among other equally funny images.
Mandi started off the Second Act with a side-splitting stand-up routine about women’s bodies, aging gracefully, being comfortable in your own skin, and all the challenges and joys this brings.
At one point, two “mature mums” have the courage to reveal their less than perfect and perky busts to challenge and satirize textile society’s image obsession. Or as Mandi added, “Two middle-aged women on stage getting their dangly bits out…what could be better?”
Overall, we enjoyed this empowering and affirmative celebration of the female body, validated by the overwhelmingly female audience ( of the 150 people in the 200-seat theater, I estimate about 80% of them were women).
The show next travels to New York in December 2011. Tickets start at $45 each but you can get them half-price (or even lower) online at http://www.goldstar.com
This article originally appeared in the Southern California Naturist Association Newsletter, October 2011.