Singing trio’s brand spanking wartime show tells Blitz’s biggest secret

Vocal vintage-style trio The Three Belles who formed in Portsmouth three years ago need your help.

The popular trio are heading to Edinburgh to launch London Life, a riotous comedy revue based on the little-known “specialist” magazine from the 1930s and 1940s.

"Dig for Victory!" (photo copyright (c) Beck Photographic www.beckphotographic.com

“Dig for Victory!”
(photo copyright (c) Beck Photographic www.beckphotographic.com

The normally reserved singers decided to put on the show after stumbling on a pile of London Life magazines in an antiques shop.

“We started reading the magazines and couldn’t believe what we were seeing,” explains Anneka Wass of The Three Belles. “Because this magazine, published in the middle of the war was dedicated to people with very particular fads – like wearing rubber or spanking.  It was in fact, a World War 2 fetish magazine.”

A cover from a 1941 issue of London Life

A cover from a 1941 issue of London Life

She goes on to say that after they picked their jaws up off the floor they began to see the comedy potential.

“Their stories are often funny, poignant and sometimes moving. They never spoke about it in public, but these people decided to seek fun in unconventional ways at a time when rubber, leather and clothing was strictly rationed.  It’s never rude, always in good taste – but extremely funny.”

True stories in the show include the woman who made herself a rubber dress from bath curtains only to nearly choke on rubber fumes after sitting in front of a fire, or the married couple who discovered a stiff-upper-lipped love of cross-dressing at a Christmas party.

“The background to their lives is danger,” says Sally Taylor, also of The Three Belles. “It’s tragi-comic. It’s never been told before.”

The Three Belles will be weaving 1940s songs into the show such as Gimme Some Skin, Beat Me Daddy Eight To The Bar, and the earlier Masculine Women, Femine Men.

In order to take the show to Edinburgh, the singers need to raise £10,000 to cover expenses.

“It’s not a cheap business going to the Fringe,” says third Belle Isabelle Moore. “We need help, and have launched a fundraising campaign on Indiegogo that runs until May 24th. Remember, your Belles Need You!”

London Life, The True Story of the Secret Kinks of World War 2 will premiere in July in London before transferring to the Edinburgh Fringe on August 11th.

To find out more about The Three Belles show go to: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-three-belles-go-to-edinburgh-fringe#home

For more information about London Life magazine: http://Londonlifemagazine.org

 

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