Last week I took my annual research trip for The Unofficial Guide to Las Vegas, and the highlight of my visit was reuniting with Elaine "Lanie" Hoxie, whom longtime Orlando dance fans will remember from VarieTease and DRIP. I caught up with her at David Siegel's Westgate casino before seeing Sexxy, the topless revue she's starring in through March 12. While Lanie prepared pasties for her performance, she filled me in on her life since leaving Orlando and shared some insights on Central Florida versus Sin City.
LAC: Why did you move from Orlando to Los Angeles to Las Vegas?
LH: I've been here almost two years now. I had already kind of intended on moving to Vegas, mainly because I wanted to pay off student loans. ... So I moved here with that specific purpose, putting those feelers out there. I knew a lot of dancers out here already.
I had happened to start working with Hal Sparks. ... His girlfriend was producing and choreographing a show here with another friend, and they were like, "There might be a job for you." Right away I moved out, and I auditioned and was put right into the show.
How is Orlando's burlesque scene different from Las Vegas and Los Angeles?
Every area is completely different. I learned everything from Blue and Tymisha [of VarieTease]. I had the best teachers and influences that I feel anybody can have. They prepared me for my future; I learned so much from them. Learning from Blue, I feel that Orlando has ... more of that drag-queen vibe to it. It's completely different in L.A.; there is that striptease element, but you're dealing with these dancers that will go balls to the wall doing anything.
I've been a part of some crazy rock burlesque shows, doing stuff for Rob Zombie. I call it "thrashy & trashy" – that's definitely my style. I love it! ... I wouldn't even necessarily call the topless shows here burlesque; burlesque is more of a striptease, where in these show you might have it all off to begin with.
- Photo courtesy of ‘Sexxy’ at Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino
What are Las Vegas auditions like?
In L.A. I was up against 700 people at times. Here it's much smaller. You're in your skivvies, learning some choreo and usually a little freestyle ... and a lot of times if it's a topless show, they will ask you to take your top off so they can see the goods.
How did you get cast in Sexxy?
This is the second show that I've done. The first was called Dreamgirls, and it was an amazing show. In my solo I was barefoot, and it was way more contemporary, more of my dance roots. Great show, great cast. I loved everybody, which is rare in this town to find.
Sexxy has been around for a year now. I was actually working in L.A. when they had auditions. I was going back and forth, thinking, "I just want to get a job in Vegas again." The day I got back into Vegas, I auditioned and was put into the show. We had only a month to put the show together!
Any memorable celebrity encounters?
A lot of the old rocker dudes hang out in town. Vince Neil has actually come to the show a few times, it's always pretty rowdy. Nothing too crazy. I like to keep my mind – here in Vegas it can be very easily lost.
Advice for Orlandoans considering moving to Vegas?
Be prepared for anything. I'm a hustler, I like to do everything and anything ... I'm lucky if I get four hours of sleep at night, but I like to keep it that way. There is so much opportunity for work here.
What's next for you?
I'm leaving the show. I'm more of a freelance type of girl, and I'm 35 and ready to set up my future. I've been getting a lot more involved in choreographing again and directing. I work with a group called the Flaunt Girls, out of South Dakota; they became popular from the TV show Full Throttle. We do motorcycle rallies all over; we were just in the Bahamas doing jobs for the PGA and Tiger Woods.
I've also gotten involved with Curtis Young, an up-and-coming hip-hop artist who is Dr. Dre's son. We've got some big stuff coming up, some shows in Mexico with Pitbull and Ne-Yo, and an East Coast tour with Wyclef. They're a great family to be a part of, and I'm going to be hiring the dancers, choreographing, putting everything together. Also, we're filming a reality show called Seeds of Hip-Hop, which will be on VH1, so I'll be a part of that as well. There's big stuff coming up!
Any plans to return to Orlando?
I was hoping to go back for a visit but I don't know when that's happening quite yet. Things just get crazier and crazier. I'm so thankful for my experiences in Orlando, especially with Blue, Tymisha and Willy [Marchante]. I learned so much from those guys. They prepared me for everything that there is, so thank you!