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Burlesque Artist performing at first Royal William Yard Festival invites Sir Richard Branson to come and watch – for charity!

April 27, 2017 Destination Europe No Comments Email Email

Australian burlesque artist and entrepreneur, Sapphira, who crusaded for 4 years to meet Sir Richard Branson, will be performing her original My Heart Belongs To Branson song at the Royal William Yard Festival – with an invitation to the British businessman to come and see her sing as she as she launches #BurlesqueAPeel, a fundraiser for mental health.

Dubbed the ‘Princess of Plymouth’ the enterprising burlesque artist’s quest to meet her idol involved a series of YouTube songs which she insists helped her stand out and succeed in meeting him in person. Now the focus is to launch her expand her business launching her album and festival in Ibiza but first she is donating all monies she is paid for performing at the Royal William Yard Festival to her fundraiser for charities, Sane and Butterfly Conservation.

‘When I suffered a severe bipolar episode nearly 20 years ago I vowed to myself I would turn my life around and overcome it’, says Sapphira. ‘Burlesque changed my life and it’s why I have launched a record label, dance school and festival so I can reach more people with the artform.

Since meeting Sir Richard in October last year I was inspired to learn more about business and I’ve attended workshops with Virgin Media Pioneers that help entrepreneurs develop their skills. When I attended the Change The World Workshop, I realised other people are struggling with mental illness so I want to speak out, fundraise and give them courage. I wanted once again to let Sir Richard know he is still my inspiration and I look forward to entering the Pitch To Rich competition in 2017 to present my next project, the Ibiza Burlesque Festival. I am donating the money from my performance in Plymouth and my heart’s wish is that he would come to hear me sing in person.’

The inaugural Royal William Yard Festival will be a celebration of Peninsula lifestyle and culture. The festival will bring areas of the Yard to life with an array of classic cars and boats, providing the back drop to 6 musical stages, including a Cabaret & Burlesque show hosted in the old barrel store. The Royal William Yard is a stunning Grade 1 Listed ex Naval victualling yard, redeveloped to much acclaim by award winning Manchester-based property developers, Urban Splash.The Yard is home to some of the best food brands in the South West, including Bistrot Pierre, Las Iguanas, Le Vignoble, Prezzo, River Cottage Canteen & Deli, Seco Lounge, Wagamama, Wildwood and Victuals cafe as well as arts hub, Ocean Studios.

Supporting SANE UK one of Britain’s leading mental illness charities and Butterfly Conservation, Sapphira runs the burlesque academy Sapphira’s Showgirls which exists to empower women through self-expression after her own recovery from a major psychiatric illness 20 years ago was aided through her discovery of burlesque. All of the women in the My Heart Belongs to Branson YouTube videos are from her dance school.

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