Lauren Bok: Boklesque {Melbourne International Comedy Festival} – Comedy Review

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Who knew that burlesque could be funny? Lauren Bok did and she’s providing serene sex appeal and hilarity in her new show – Boklesque.

As soon as she stepped onto the stage in a sparkly and gorgeous lilac outfit that she made herself, Lauren Bok impressed with a sensual and jest performance to Cher’s ‘Welcome to Burlesque’. It was in that moment I knew I’d be in for a treat.

In this unstoppable one-woman tour de force, Lauren Bok is a troupe of very quirky and unique burlesque dancers. The show consists of hula hoop act that is out of this world, a mesmerising dark diva complete with cane, and a self-proclaimed burlesque queen with celebrity-like green room demands.

With every character that Bok transforms into, although each with their own hairstyles and outfits, the accents and the comedic physicality in the way Bok carries herself to differentiate these multiple personas is truly masterful. Not once did I ever confuse one character for the other. Yet, at every moment, I was thoroughly impressed by Lauren Bok’s cheek and bravery.

Smartly mixing comedy and burlesque together, this clever queen had me laughing until my face hurt. At the same time, Lauren Bok expertly maintained a sexy confidence throughout the show’s entirety and I’m still trying to wrap my head around just how a person could achieve this. Lauren Bok really is that special.

The audio dialogue that plays in the room while Lauren Bok makes her quick changes in between acts never sounds like the same person putting on different voices (even though we know that this is the case). Her characters each sound like very flawed different people, well developed and deeply familiar to Bok, despite the 55 minute runtime that we have to get to know them all. The conversations that we are flies on the wall to never feel like time filler opportunities for an outfit transformation. Instead, these conversations that we are privy to provide enough context to form a decent narrative to Boklesque. The chaos is super juicy and the MC’s struggles (the show must go on) feels genuine.

Boklesque is not a parody. Instead, it is another form of burlesque with enough tease and nipple tassels to satisfy seasoned burlesque fans while at the same time, dishes up the right amount of funny moments to boldly please the avid comedy seeker.

While Lauren Bok’s characters are enticing and entertaining in their own ways, it is Lauren Bok herself that was my favourite of the bunch. The way she held the room felt friendly, welcoming and familiar. Yes, plenty of skin is revealed throughout the performance but not once did I ever feel uncomfortable or awkward. Even with the tricks she pulled off, it was all in good measure and never apprehensive. Lauren Bok’s ability to hypnotise, inspire laughs and tantalize the audience simultaneously is mind-blowing and I found myself quietly envying her confidence.

Lauren Bok is infectiously hilarious, undeniably gorgeous and her Boklesque is fierce, proudly feminine, and funny as hell. My only criticism is that its 2024 Melbourne International Comedy Festival run ends far too soon.

Boklesque is currently playing at The Butterfly Club – Downstairs until Thursday April 4.
For more information and ticketing, please visit:

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