Ricci Cortez: The Sleepytime Gal

Born on November 3: burlesque legend Ricci Cortez (Ethel Bronson, 1924-2008.) Originally from New York City, she changed her name for professional reasons after she started dancing circa 1947 — show business is perhaps the only field where performers change their name to something more ethnic, and then only occasionally ( I think of magicians and burlesque dancers primarily). She was originally a cocktail waitress, but once she jumped onstage her career took her to the top burlesque venues in the country. She performed professionally until the 1960s. In her retirement she settled in Houston where she operated a pioneering lesbian bar called the Roaring Sixties with her long term partner . Lot of photos, clips and memories of her can be found here.  

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