A showgirl is a female dancer or performer in a stage entertainment show intended to showcase the performer's physical attributes, typically by way of revealing clothing or even toplessness or nudity. Showgirls are often associated with Latin music and dance, particularly samba.
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Showgirls date back to the late 1800s in Parisian music halls and cabarets such as the Moulin Rouge, Le Lido, and the Folies Bergère. The trafficking of showgirls for the purposes of prostitution was the subject of a salacious novel by the nineteenth-century French author Ludovic Halévy.
The Las Vegas showgirl
The first casino on the Las Vegas Strip to employ dancing girls as a diversion between acts was the El Rancho Vegas in 1941. Showgirls were presented in Las Vegas in 1952 as the opening and closing act for Las Vegas headliners, sometimes dancing around the headliner. They were introduced at the Sands Casino for a show with Danny Thomas. In 1957 Minsky's Follies took the stage at the Desert Inn giving birth to the topless showgirl in Vegas. This was followed by a long-running The Lido de Paris at the Stardust Casino that ran for 31 years.
Revues with showgirls
- Calypso Cabaret (Bangkok, Thailand)
- Folies Bergère (Paris)
- Folies du Lac (Paris)
- Jubilee! Bally's (Las Vegas)
- La Nouvelle Eve (Paris)
- Le Lido (Paris)
- Moulin Rouge (Paris)
- Paradis Latin (Paris)
- Roderick Palazuelos 'Platinum Stars' (México)
- Splash (Riviera, Las Vegas) (Frank Marino Show - La Cage)
- The Fabulous Palm Springs Follies (Palm Springs, California; unique in that the chorus line is of showgirls in their 50s, 60s and 70s)
- The Francis Show (Transvestite Show) (México)
- Tihany Spectacular Circus (Brazil-México)
- Tropicana Club (Havana, Cuba)
- Cabaret Red Light (Philadelphia, USA)
- VIVA Cabaret Showbar (Blackpool, UK)
- 90 Degrees & Rising (Dunes Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas)
Showgirls in popular culture
- The Gold Diggers films, including The Gold Diggers (silent, 1923), Gold Diggers of Broadway (1929), Gold Diggers of 1933 (1933), Gold Diggers of 1935 (1935), Gold Diggers of 1937 (1936), and Gold Diggers in Paris (1938)
- Bolero, a 1934 film in which American burlesque dancer Sally Rand played a carnival showgirl and performed a fan dance
- The Golddiggers, a troupe that performed on The Dean Martin Show beginning in 1968
- Showgirls, a 1995 movie directed by Paul Verhoeven and starring Elizabeth Berkley
- Guys and Dolls, a 1950 Broadway production, depicts a Miss Adelaide as the main character's fiancée, a singer and showgirl in various musical numbers.
- Kylie Minogue was inspired by different types of showgirls and named and styled her Showgirl: The Greatest Hits Tour and Showgirl: The Homecoming Tour concerts after them. Showgirl themes can be seen at many corners through Minogue's entire career.
- Several showgirl cars are seen at the Dinoco booth during the animated film Cars; former Motorama show car Flo displays vanity licence plate SHOGRL as a "Motorama 1957 showgirl".
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Showgirl.|
- Haze Fan (26 April 2016). "Ban on car show girls at Beijing Auto Show gives male attendants center stage". CNBC.
- "History of Showgirls". Oklahoma Showgirls. Retrieved 14 September 2017.
- McClary, Susan (1992). Georges Bizet: Carmen. Cambridge Opera Handbooks. Cambridge University Press. p. 38. ISBN 9780521398978.
- Gioia-Acres, Lisa (2013). Showgirls of Las Vegas. Arcadia Publishing. p. 8. ISBN 9780738596532.
- "Las Vegas: An Unconventional History". PBS. Retrieved April 23, 2012.
- Mary Manning (May 15, 2008). "Las Vegas Showgirls: Show and (a lot to) tell". Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved April 22, 2012.
- J.D. Morris (13 June 2016). "Celebrating the Las Vegas showgirl: An icon lives on in one group's evolving passion project". Las Vegas Sun.
- Shteir, Rachel (2004). Striptease: The Untold History of the Girlie Show. Oxford University Press. p. 153. ISBN 9780195300765.