Ralph Allen says that burlesque theater started off at the turn of the century as a comedy revue; it wasn't until the 1930s that the tradition took on its more erotic elements. Allen cowrote the play Sugar Babies, which has been produced worldwide.
Harry Rigby and Terry Kramer are co-producers of the burlesque musical revue "Sugar Babies." Rigby co-conceived the show with theater historian Ralph Allen, and is known as the producer who brought revivals back to Broadway. Kramer is known for producing a number of plays, including "I Love My Wife" and "Knock, Knock." Her mother was also a theater producer. "Sugar Babies" is back in Philadelphia with its original stars, film legends Mickey Rooney and Ann Miller.
Writer Ralph Allen returns to Fresh Air to talk about his new musical Sugar Babies and the history of burlesque, and to tell his favorite jokes from that tradition. Fresh Air listeners call in to join the conversation.