Obscene? Questions after Jersey City burlesque show shut down

ByNaveen Dhaliwal WABC logo
Friday, March 30, 2018
Obscene? Questions after Jersey City burlesque show shut down
Naveen Dhaliwal reports on the shut down of a Jersey City burlesque show.

JERSEY CITY, New Jersey (WABC) -- A burlesque show was shut down at a New Jersey bar after the city says it was too risque and violated code, even though the mayor is partially supporting the show.

Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop declined to comment, but one local entertainer wants to know why her show was targeted over the other similar ones performed in the city.

Lillian Bustle is 39 and confident, and she's been performing burlesque shows for five years.

"I'm not hiding, people know who I am," she said. "My performers, I asked them always to perform in pasties and a G-string."

And that may be why the FM Bar, where she was scheduled to perform this week, got a letter from the city citing a code violation saying burlesque is "obscene entertainment."

"I think it was a completely uninformed decision," she said. "They have no idea what I do or what I was planning to do here."

Bar general manager Ed Snyder opened the establishment just a month ago, got an entertainment license and followed all the rules, even canceling this week's show with Bustle.

"It's an adult place, we don't allow anyone under the age of 21 to be in here after 8 p.m.," he said. "Why we were targeted when it's going on in other places?"

It was a great question for Mayor Fulop, who tweeted after the city's decision, saying "Legal Dept is very prude. For what it's worth, I would have attended."

They were comforting words for Bustle.

"I'm not ashamed of what I am doing," she said. "I think it's incredible. It has great artistic and political merit."

Bustle said she will be performing a show in northern New Jersey over the weekend and plans to work with Jersey City leaders to see If they can allow her to bare creative side locally.


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