Bucks Cabaret and Bucks Wild once again hosted the industry’s top showgirl dance competition in Dallas
Texas may be known as the “Lone Star State,” but when the EDI West recently graced the stages at Bucks Cabaret and Bucks Wild in Dallas, there were plenty of star performers in attendance. Sixteen feature entertainers in two divisions (Showgirl and Starlet) competed over the course of three evenings, April 19-21. When the dust settled, two first-time entrants — “Showgirl” Autumn Knights and “Starlet” Miss Galaxy — emerged as the 2023 EDI West’s big winners.
Autumn Knights outlasted a very competitive “Showgirl” Division, which boasted the more “advanced” crop of feature entertainers including First Runner-Up Justice and Second Runner-Up BJ McNaughty, as well as Michelle Lynn, Pixie Raye, the Fire & Ice duo (Janine Jericho and Hayla Faye), Bambi Wilde, Phoenix Phires, Ella Hotwheels, and Koyotee VonDiva. Autumn’s aerial athleticism and pole theatrics won over the judges on both nights, including the “Showgirl” Division competition at Bucks Wild on Thursday, April 20, and Finals Night at Bucks Cabaret on Friday, April 21.
“I’m incredibly honored and proud to have won my first-ever EDI! Everyone worked really hard on their shows and it absolutely paid off,” says Autumn. “The competition was fierce! The whole event ran super smoothly from where I stood, like a well-oiled machine. Shout out to Rob Aiken and Tom Hooks, who busted their butts to make us look as good as possible. Thank you Dave, Kris and Lexi for organizing, planning, and preparing everything behind the scenes that we don’t see. And congratulations to my dear friend Miss.Galaxy who won the Starlet division on her first-ever EDI as well. We started our feature journey together one year ago with Aerial Angles at Michael’s Men’s Club and it’s so fun to get to do this with her. Really congratulations to everyone in the competition! It’s not easy putting together these shows and competing in itself takes a ton of work and courage.”
Justice’s hilarious “Mermaid” show, which is highlighted by singing her own unique version of “Part of Your World” from The Little Mermaid (with decidedly “adult” lyrics), earned her the title of “Best Overall Show,” while BJ McNaughty added yet another entertaining and tasty “popcorn” twist to her always-entertaining clown theme.
Autumn Knights and Justice will move on to compete at the EDI Finals in Las Vegas at Peppermint Hippo on Sunday, August 20 (at the start of EXPO 2023). They will be joined by the winner and first runner-up at the upcoming EDI East at Jerry Westlund’s Pony Clubs in Huntsville, Alabama (May 24-26).
In the “Starlet” Division, which includes relatively new entertainers (touring/competing for less than four years), Miss Galaxy stood head and shoulders above the rest. Her bright and vibrant shows wowed the crowds, which also helped her earn the “Audience Favorite” mini-title. First Runner-Up Zelah Pandemonium seduced the crowd and the judges with her fluid pole movements, while Second Runner-Up Claire Fae offered up a one-of-a-kind “Crab Boil” show that was certainly an EDI first!
Other Starlet Division competitors included Hannah Doll, Kimberly Blaze and Sophia Karenina.
“I was ecstatic upon hearing my name for this year’s Starlet winner! The EDIs are very well put together and prove to be such a creative environment for entertainers,” says Miss Galaxy. “This was my very first feature competition so I was very nervous but the staff, the crew, the other Showgirls and Starlet contestants were so welcoming and sweet. I can’t wait for next year’s competition.”
“Bucks owners Curtis Wise and Kevin ‘Rich’ Richardson and their clubs present an ideal environment for our EDI West contest,” says ED Publisher and EDI Founder, Dave Manack. “We have to give a special ‘thank you’ as well to Bucks managers Jason Jones, Jimmy Edwards, and DJs Jimmy Jam and Jeff from Bucks Cabaret. The staff and entertainers at the Bucks clubs are attentive and supportive, so we always have a great time producing the EDI in Dallas!”
Special thanks to EDI producer Lexi Lamour, co-producer Kris Kay, stage producer Rob Aiken, stage assistant Tom Hooks, videographer Daniel Montoya, photographers Ricky Rich and Richard Kent, and show emcee Danny Meyers. Additional thanks to judges Larry Kaplan and George Kane.
EDI West Mini-Titles:
Best Costume: Bambi Wilde
Hottest Body: Autumn Knights
Most Extreme Show: Michelle Lynn
Most Ambitious Show: Ella Hotwheels
Best Dancer: Justice
Most Original Show: Phoenix Phires
Audience Favorite: Miss Galaxy
Best Overall Show: Justice
Photos courtesy of Ricky Rich. See the July issue of ED Magazine for more coverage of the EDI West!