White cloud border

Storyfort & Frankly Burlesque Present Fierce

Storyfort and Frankly Burlesque Present Fierce: The History of Leopard Print with author and burlesque legend, Jo Weldon.

Join us Thursday, November 21, 8pm, at Woodland Empire Ale Craft (21+) in your best leopard attire for a free lecture on the history of leopard print. Donations would be appreciated!

Books will be available for sale to have signed by Jo, as well as other merchandise.



These days leopard print is everywhere, but it remains one of the most controversial topics in fashion, equally denounced and adored. The term “leopard print” no longer refers simply to the pattern of a big cat being represented on fabric. From being the sole province of kings and warriors, it has become a fashion staple for people in every walk of life.

It now signifies a wide range of conflicting implications, depending on who wears it and where they wear it. Because it was created in nature, it can never be purely cultural, but pop culture has imbued it with impact no one could have imagined 100 years ago. No matter how common the print becomes, it never loses its bite! This illustrated lecture will trace leopard print’s path through modern fashion and celebrate some of its fiercest wearers.



Jo Weldon is the author of Fierce: The History of Leopard Print (HarperCollins 2018). Her experience with the print spans the worlds of fashion, rock n roll, and the performing arts. She is the Headmistress at the New York School of Burlesque and tours the world performing and teaching, as well as being a field instructor at Playwrights Horizons at Tisch School of the Arts.

Her leopard print lectures and events have been featured in Mental Floss, Racked, The Financial Times, and the New York Times, as well as in many more national and international magazines. She has worked as a harm reduction advocate, presenting media analyses at conferences and lobbying at the UN to promote diverse perspectives on women’s issues. She is currently advocating the conservation of big cats and their habitats to promote ethical fashion. She lives in New York City and the Hudson Valley.