BOURBON STREET BURLESQUE LEGEND LINDA
BRIGETTE DEAD AT 64
Lambert (Linda Brigette, the Cupid Doll) 1939 - 2004
On April 9, 2004, Georgia Lambert, also
known as burlesque star Linda Brigette, died of a massive stroke. Linda
Brigette, the Cupid Doll was the last great Bourbon Street stripper from
the glory days of burlesque in New Orleans.
She was born in 1939 in Winnsboro, Louisiana, the daughter of a poor
sharecropper. She wed at 13, and had a child at 14. In 1957 she was
working in a Baton Rouge strip club as a cocktail waitress when Texas
legend, Candy Barr was headlining the nightclub. Inspired by Candy,
Linda became a stripper herself, taking half of her stage name from
actress Brigette Bardot.
In the late 1950s, Brigette
moved to the French Quarter in New Orleans and worked at the Gunga Den
on Bourbon Street. Her second marriage was to club owner Larry Lamarca.
In the mid-Sixties, when Lilly Christine “the Cat Girl” died, Linda
Brigette took her place as headliner of the 500 Club on Bourbon Street.
She was billed as “the Cupid Doll” and “America’s Most Beautiful
Exotic,” while reportedly earning up to $1500 a week. Her act consisted
of a striptease ending with seductive moves on a settee. At just under
five feet tall, she was most noted for her largely enhanced breasts and
big platinum blonde hair. Brigette’s other acts included dancing in an
oversized champagne glass, fire-eating, and using live animals (a monkey
and a python) as props.
In 1966, Brigette was busted on obscenity charges while performing
“Dance of a Lover’s Dream.” At the time, District Attorney Jim Garrison
was conducting raids on the strip clubs to rid the French Quarter of
B-drinking and obscenity. Brigette made headlines when Governor John
McKeithen granted her a pardon.
In the late 1960s, Brigette married her spotlight man, Joe Trosclair.
They were married in Newport, Kentucky in what was publicized as the
first nude wedding ceremony. Her maid-of-honor was Morganna, a stripper
who later became known as “The Kissing Bandit.” Brigette and Trosclair
were married for 18 years.
Since 2000, Brigette has been telling her life story to filmmaker Rick
Delaup. She occasionally made personal appearances and autograph
signings. She also spoke about her life as an exotic dancer at the
Tease-O-Rama burlesque convention held in New Orleans in 2001. Survivors
include her sisters Shirley J. Garrido, Eloise Zilbermann, and Ruby
Lambert; two sons, Glen Williams and Steve Williams.