Anna's Go-Go Academy

Publication: Melbourne Stage Online, March 1st 2006
Author: Lola McMillan

HAVE you ever considered spending an hour or so doing the Cool Jerk? Well I have and on Tuesday evenings, in a hotel in Collingwood, you can too and more.

Melbourne Burlesque performer Anna, from the Hi Ball Burlesque, has brought her effervescent joie-de-vie to an all new venture, founding Anna's Go-Go Academy - "Australia's only official go-go school", launched on February 21st this year.

According to Anna, this is a "fun, high-energy, easy to learn" dance class, requiring no dance partner, it's "good for fitness" and you will learn moves that will then be "instantly transferable" to the party dance floor. Suitably prepared, I attended her beginners class.

The class participants are personally welcomed by the exuberantly colourful dance teacher, whom I like to call Miss Anna. I found that she engenders a completely unintimidating, social environment and likes to begin each class with a "cider and a fag". The class I attended had a good wide range of participants, even a man, although it did initially appear a little cliquey, everyone quickly warned up and I've never been to sich a giggly class! There is no pressure to be good or even right, making it easy to pick up the cool moves and the ginchy vibe.

This evening's dance was "the Cool Jerk", comprising of such steps as the big jerk and the monkey. If the steps don't officially have a name, Anna will name them herself. It helps the memory. After learning the set dance, there is the freestyle section of the evening, wherein dancers pull out their "party moves".

It is worth mentioning that this fun class is high impact on knees and lower back, if this is a concern to you I would consider doing your own warm-up before Anna starts hers.

My experience of this dance class is that it's like being invited to a high-enegry party, at which you'll be taken care of by the hostess with the mostest! On a fitness level, it's also a good alternative to the gym. Anna's expresses a desire to "amass a go-go army" and by the end of the class I believed she could!

So bring your dance shoes (sneakers, heels, vinly boots - you choose), your enthusiasm and you too can "Shake it like a Polaroid picture".


For bookings and further information contact Anna by sending an email to
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