Joe Downtown Radio: Some people downtown are comfortable being different

For the majority of us, change is the ultimate challenge.

On this week's broadcast of the "Joe Downtown Show," we talk to two people who have had moments of out-of-the-box thinking. One went from auto engineering to dancing. The other from simple office work and a religious upbringing to a form of electronic burlesque.

When Mister Tony, whose real name is Bernard Walter, walks anywhere, people stare. And giggle. And smile.

Tony is used to it. More than that, he wants it. He developed his whole Mister Tony persona to gain attention and to bring him out of an existence that, five years ago, he could no longer bear to live.

The change in his life began with events that would make for a good country-western song: Dog died, wife moved back to Germany, and the recession hit. And Tony decided to do something.

He dances. In maybe the brightest, rainbow-colored garb you've ever seen. And now he's going to start a clothing line featuring his designs.

Another unconventional thinker is Darla Lush. Darla, not her real name, grew up in Cleveland to a large Catholic family of three sisters and two brothers.

Her mother was a former nun. Her sister is a Bible translator. A cousin is a priest.

To say she is steeped in religion is an understatement.

She didn't rebel so much as she simply didn't follow the path of everyone else in the family.

When she turned 18, she got out. She moved on. She ended up in San Francisco, then Los Angeles.

About three years ago, her life took a turn. She discovered burlesque. Then a year ago it took another turn. She discovered projection mapping. You'll hear how she uses this new digital art form and incorporates it into her act.

Joe Downtown Radio

Marching to a different drummer downtown

  • Your Browser and plugins either do not support HTML5 or Flash, or you have JavaScript disabled.

Joe Schoenmann talks to Bernard Walter, aka Mister Tony, and Darla Lush about life downtown on this week's episode of the "Joe Downtown Show."


CORRECTION: A previous version of this story contained information about a future episode of the "Joe Downtown Show." The updated story has the correct show information. | (October 24, 2013)