2011 Miss Burlesque Australia – Sina King
The Coronation of The Royal Captivator
By Alyssa Kitt
She’s the royal captivator, Queen of Cheeky Glamour, the slow-mo showgirl who’s incomparable glitz and grandeur transcends stages and translates to even a Bunnings aisle. Her long elegant limbs extend through her ethereally conceptual artistry, King combines this with her opulent costumery with some gosh darned good old fashioned showgirl glamour. Sina King has been captivating audiences worldwide since 2011. She’s competed for Queen of Burlesque at the Burlesque Hall of Fame in Las Vegas and headlined international festivals around the world.
Sina has risen to the ranks as one of Australia’s most influential performers, internationally representing the Australian burly crew at European burlesque festivals, and cities across America, Germany, Sweden, Austria, New Zealand, Italy and Seychelles. She’s currently voted number 39th in the world on 21st Century Burlesque Magazine’s Burlesque Top 50 but her down to earth personality is what makes her an endearing and much loved member of the Miss Burlesque family.
Driven by the desire to inspire women around the world to embrace their femininity with flair, Sina’s journey is closely followed by tens of thousands. While her bio reads as some of the highest accolades, big gigs and awards, her journey into burlesque began with her first step on the Miss Burlesque Australia stage.
Miss Burlesque Australia went into its second year of the competition with great success and the first wave of competitors were rising to notoriety. The stage was set for the next winner.The performer announcements were released when a photo of a statuesque Ralph swimwear model hit the Miss Burlesque Victoria contestants list. Many of the contenders first thoughts were “woah – who is this?” Sina had recently competed in from Ralph Australian Swimwear Model of the Year competition, where she had just placed 1st runner up at the national grand final. “I entered on a whim and made it to the Grand Final, then came second by one point! It was where I did my first professional photoshoot, so I can hardly say I ‘came from bikini modelling’. I will say, however, that it gave me more certainty that being on stage was where I wanted to be.”
The MBA stage was ready for Sina. Entering the competition in 2011 meant instant exposure to the community of performers, producers, judges and patrons but Sina says she ended up gaining so much more. “I have incredibly loyal fans of six years that witnessed my very first burlesque performances… and that is quite special.”
“My experience was unique, in that it was the very beginning of my career. That’s right, entering MBA was my first step onto a burlesque stage. No one knew who I was including the competition creators.”
Sina King won the title of Miss Burlesque Melbourne, alongside Kelly Ann Doll, who won Miss Burlesque Victoria in 2011. Being an unknown hardly had it’s setbacks for Sina.
“Being a ‘newbie’ and entering the competition against established artists was exciting as it gave me the challenge I needed to push myself to my creative best.”
“I hadn’t seen much burlesque before the competition, however, the one show I did make it to was Danica Lee’s ‘Burlesque Royale’ [which was at] The Palms at Crown Casino. Featuring for the first time in Australia, UK burlesque sensation Immodesty Blaize, International stars Kalani Kokonuts (US), Michelle L’amour (US), and Perle Noire (US). Also performing was Australian artists Danica Lee, Holly J’aDoll, Kelly Ann Doll, and Lauren La Rouge… Now if you know your stuff, you’ll agree, THAT is an introduction to burlesque! Kelly Ann received a standing ovation (myself included) that night and I could not wait to meet her. Kelly was the ‘hot favourite’ to win the whole competition and I would be competing with her in my heat. I knew I had to compete with a national swing dance champion that did backflips and everything else amazing one can do on one or two feet. This is the reason I thought of including the art of magic into my act, so yes, it helped me a great deal.”
While Sina King is known for her opulent “cheeky” glamour – it might come as a shock to her fans now that her neo burlesque routine in 2011 was in fact a comedy act. Sina’s gardening service was slapstick perfection, with dramatic faces, the odd gardening rake entendre, and lashings of mud.
Watch Sina King’s 2011 Neo here:
“I love making people laugh, but the slapstick style from the competition acts was something that didn’t challenge me personally… it was how I entertained my family and friends growing up, so it came very easily to me. I have explored many ‘characters’ throughout the past seven years on a burlesque stage. Each act still has a narrative, and character, and comedy elements but they’re a little less obvious at times. My acts are very varied. I don’t place any boundaries on what I create.”
With sides already split after her neo round, it was time for a little magic to hit the Enmore Theatre stage. Sina’s unique routine was a quick changing narrative which according to The Telegraph “ stunned the audience.” Sina learnt quick change and slide of hand magic just for the competition. “I practiced ferociously… it is not easy to make it look easy.”
Watch Sina’s 2011 Unique here:
With both genuine shock and overwhelming joy, Sina King was announced as Miss Burlesque Australia 2011. Rita Fontaine, dressed as a sparkling fairy Godmother, bestowed the crown on Sina’s head and the first handover started a beautiful tradition. The act that Sina performed for her own handover the following year ended up being accepted into Best Debut at BHof. She performed in luscious costume elements from her Miss Burlesque Australia prizes (including the incredible Silk Bazaar isis wings that so prominently featured on the show billboard outside The Orleans in Las Vegas.
Winning Miss Burlesque Australia was only the first grand achievement in Sina King’s already illustrious career. While Sina has had a great amount of personal success over the various creative aspects within burlesque (directing, mentoring, marketing, producing, performing, designing, competing, travelling and touring), she says her biggest achievement is becoming an inspiration for others.
Sina’s advice for first time competitors:
- Perform your acts as many times for family and friends, and whoever has 10 minutes spare… their real responses and feedback will give you invaluable perspective to revisit your latest version.
- Breathe: Practise the art of being present and witness your breathing so you can perform your best on the night with a clear focus.
- Play by the rules: Read the rules, then check how you’ve ‘ticked the box’ for each category. Assume each of these rules will be applied on the night, and ranked/graded out of 10. Now ask yourself, ‘Am I honestly presenting a 10 version of this category/rule/guide in my creation?’ If you want to win, you’ll need to think like this.
- Be true to you: Put your own stamp on your work. If you know deep down it’s not your idea, don’t bother putting it on stage. Judges have seen it all before, they will know exactly where a unique costume design or storyline has been presented before. Where you can, it’s better to have your own work to build upon than a polished presentation of anyone else’s ideas and essence.
“I’m looking forward to seeing the Australian burlesque stars continue to blow everyone’s minds with their fresh creativity and thoughtful presentation. As a producer, I love discovering new performers, and seeing established stars continue to shine each year.”
We can’t wait to see what Sina creates next and you can follow Sina all her creative endeavours on her socials: