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Viva VaVoom! Dita Von Teese Revamping Las Vegas Burlesque
The seductress returns to the Crazy Horse for a limited engagement and big plans for the future

Dita Von Teese made her much awaited return to the Crazy Horse Paris at MGM Grand this week. On Wednesday, Dita premiered her eight show run.  It was her first time on stage in the three years since she became Crazy Horse's first ever guest performer since its inception in 1951.

Since Dita's debut at Crazy Horse, the revues in Las Vegas and Paris have invited other guest stars to perform. Carmen Electra has appeared twice at the MGM Grand and Holly Madison has expressed interest as well.

"I think Crazy Horse has been great at bringing people who are relevant into the show," Dita said. "Carmen Electra is sexy and is known for taking off her clothes, for Playboy. Holly, in the same way, is relevant, and so is Pam Anderson (who appeared in the Paris version of the show)."

Though, Dita explains there is a hierarchy when it comes to these guest performers, at which she still remains at the top.

"I live and breathe striptease and burlesque, I know what it is all about. I have no reality show. I'm not an actress. This is what I do.

"So if the question is, ‘Do I think that I'm even more relevant?' The answer is, yeah, I do."

Dita's response isn't cocky or arrogant. It's just true. No one does striptease like Dita Von Teese. She constantly surprises and brings something new to the table, as seen in her current engagement. Dita has brought three new segments from the Paris revue to Vegas, which includes an update of her now infamous, bathtub sequence.

Financially independent since 15, the now 37-year-old performer is uncomfortable relegating power to others. Dita has made sure to be in control of all aspects of the scenes she'll be featured in at Crazy Horse. She even estimates she's spent around $100,000 of her own money on the show.

One reason Dita is so dedicated to her performance is her passion towards the arts, and a certain lack of innovation and sophistication in the Las Vegas adult entertainment scene.

"I love Cirque, but it would be a tragedy if it were all Cirque du Soleil," Dita explained. "In general, I'm far more interested in figuring out how to do a show that doesn't appeal to the lowest common denominator. Any time you see these big revues, you see moments that go so wrong and can't figure out why someone spent all this money on these and can't figure out how to do a glamorous, sophisticated show from state to finish."

"Crazy Horse has a definite vision. It is a super-sexy, beautiful, racy show."

And boy is it! Dita's performance at the Crazy Horse is seductive, glamorous, and titillatingly intimate. The sexy star was featured in three scenes called "Lazy," in which sexy French maids undress a haute-couture decked out Dita; "Teese-ing," during which she sexily smokes a cigarette topless; and "Le Bain Noir," her signature bathtub piece inspired by 1950s burlesque icon Lili St. Cyr. For the first time in a show, the audience gets to hear Dita's singing voice as well.

"I really wanted to do something big this time in Las Vegas for myself and by myself," Dita said. But her Crazy Horse performances aren't the only big things the seductress has in mind.

"My big dream of course is let people understand that I create these shows. Eventually I hope it leads to my own grand revue. I would love to direct my own numbers and also other numbers for performers. My dream is to have a show that is my burlesque fantasy come to life. That's the big, long-term goal."

"I recognize the problem is that it takes a lot of money to do shows like that. I know what it cost me to just create these three acts. Las Vegas, though, would appear to be the most ideal city. It's a pretty big place, and the budgets are here for such big shows. I would love to see it come to life in Las Vegas. You've had so many revues close, even Folies Bergere is gone. Lots of big Las Vegas showgirl revues have vanished."

"My goal is to change people's minds about striptease and show how and why it's enduring and why there were stars such as Gypsy Rose Lee -- true striptease artists. I would like a big glamorous revue with those risqué elements. I would love to watch a show from start to finish that never gets stupid. Every time I go see a show, it's going along well until the lasers, the smoke and the roller skates come out. There always seems to come that moment when it dumbs down and becomes something silly about it. I believe you can still make great productions without that happening, and at some point I will prove that."