Who Am I ?
1: Who am I?
I’m an award-winning burlesque performer and show producer, based out of Brooklyn, NY.
2: What do you do and what project are you currently working on?
Well, mostly I do things like dance around in extravagant costumes, slither out of over-sized oyster shells and splash around in glass bathtubs. I enjoy calling this work. Some of the projects I am currently working on are The New York Burlesque Festival, which is 4 days of glitter and glamour in Gotham that I co-produce. We have over 150 of the best burlesque and variety performers from around the world in for an extra long weekend of shows and parties. This years event takes place September 29th to October 2nd at hot spots like BB Kings, The Highline Ballroom, Brooklyn Bowl and the Bell House. In addition to that I am working on a Fall national tour of “The Rock n’ Burlesque Spectacular” with the musical group, Los Straitjackets. I’m also in the midst of putting the final touches on a new dance DVD that will be out in August called, “Go-Go with Angie Pontani.” I am a bit obsessed with original 60′s go-go moves, so I am pretty excited about this release which takes those classic moves and tailors them to contemporary music and styles.
3: Where are you from and where are you going?
I’m from a blue collar extra large, showbiz-obsessed Italian-American family from Trenton, NJ. I moved to Brooklyn with my sister as teenagers. I am so much of where I am from, I love my family just as much as I love jetsetting. When the spotlight goes down, I imagine I’ll end up where I started (though in Brooklyn, she has stolen my heart): jarring tomatoes, making lasagna and cooking big Sunday dinners. But before that happens, I have a lot of pit stops to make on stages around the world. Hong Kong in September, across the US in October, Australia in December, and so on!
4: Who is your biggest hero?
I love Elvis. He was an amazing and sincere entertainer. He had a tremendous amount of showmanship. I go crazy for his jumpsuits, music and karate dance moves. Those were some bold statements he was making and it just proved to me that if your heart is in it, you can sell it. He was an original and, while I think his talent and charm were obviously off the charts, there was something so human and modest about him that I just love.
5: What book is your bible?
Buffalo Bill’s America. It’s the story of Buffalo Bill, aka William Cody. He had an amazing run and a tremendous amount of showbiz savvy. He created perfect amounts of scandal to support his epic shows. It’s a guide to show business before show business as we know it even existed. He was a true original thinker. I read it every few years because I love to remind myself that life and work is simply about keeping going, enjoying the good times and making that lemonade when things don’t go right. You can always make it work!
6: What are some things you love? And some things you hate?
I love my morning coffee in my garden with my dog. I love red wine, western movie marathons, dressing up and the rare night that I can get to bed before midnight. I hate mean spirited people, injustice, rumor mills, bugs, taking out the garbage and driving!
7: What is your raison d’être?
I live to work, but I love my job: it’s a ridiculously wonderful occupation as well as an adventure every day, every moment, every trip and every show. I love pleasing an audience and doing the best I can on stage. It’s a magic moment and it definitely drives me to keep going and keep growing.
8: What is your favorite color?
“Rorange,” the perfect blend of red and orange!
9: Who is your favorite comic book superhero?
The Goon, sometimes it’s good to be bad if you are just the right amount of bad and the other guy deserves it.
10: What is your favorite NYC hot spot?
I love Johns of 12th street. It’s an Italian joint that I have been going to with my family for years. I can sit in there for hours eating d’lish Italian, drinking fantastic wine and talking turkey with the wonderful staff. It’s classic old school NY red sauce and meatballs soul food.
11: What turns you on?
When someone treats me like a lady! I’m an old school girl at heart.
12: What would the last question of this questionnaire be if you were the one asking?
What are you wearing right now?
The Reigning Queen of Burlesque, Miss Exotic World Angie Pontani has been shaking her tail feathers for as long as she can remember. Founding member of The World Famous Pontani Sisters, she is one of the most recognized and respected names in burlesque and has been credited with helping to pioneer the new revival with her classic and classy approach to strip-tease. Performing all over the world, Angie spreads the glamour gospel with every shimmy, bump-n-grind, high kick and eye trick. She has been featured at private events for Stuff Magazine, Esquire Magazine , Hennessy, The Fox 5 Super Bowl Party, Virgin Records, The Guggenheim and many others. She strutted her rhinestone-studded self multiple times on Late Night with Conan OBrien, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy and Gossip Girl. Not one to shy away from the camera, Angie has flashed her pearly whites for renowned photographers like Ellen Von Unwerth and has been featured in countless prominent publication including The New Yorker, Glamour, The New York Times,Allure, Cosmopolitan, L’Uomo Vogue, Page Six Magazine, Time and even InTouch Weekly! This highly decorated Italian-Stallionette was recently named Miss Cyclone by Astroland in lovely Coney Island in honor of the famed roller coaster. She has also won the title of Miss Exotic World 2008. And Best Body In Burlesque. Culminating pounds or plumage worth of exper-tease, Angie puts on a show unmatched in style, sass, class and costuming, wowing fans the likes of Sting, Hilary Duff, The Strokes, Bai Ling, Anthony Kiedas & Taryn Manning, and even having performed for Hugh Hefner at LA’s famous Orpheum Theatre.
Questions by PMc Magazine
Photography by Clint Spaulding for Patrick McMullan.com
Design by Jillian Mercado
Contact Jillian Mercado if you’re interested in becoming a “Who Am I?”
Angie Pontani, Burlesque Performance, CAMPARI, INTERVIEW MAGAZINE and ARTISTS SPACE host a viewing of “DISTINCTIVE MESSAGES” Exhibition, House of Campari, NYC, October 4, 2007, Photography by Clint Spaulding for Patrick McMullan.com