We're not Broadway, we're not the film industry, we're not major network TV. We are weirdness as entertainment.
SNAKE OIL FESTIVAL is New Orleans' premier event dedicated to preserving the art and spirit of America's rich variety entertainment and sideshow history.
During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, purveyors of medicinal cure-alls known as snake oil salesman, crisscrossed the landscape of the United States hawking their sometimes dubious concoctions to a hungry and unsuspecting populous. In order to make sure that they always had an audience for their elaborate and entertaining sales pitches, the snake oil salesman would employ a vast array of entertainers to draw in and enthrall the locals. These entertainers were experts in the arts of circus, sideshow, music, singing, comedy and dancing, and often featured oddities and curios. The traveling medicine shows ranged from large to small, with some pulled in just a few carts by a team of horses to full scale productions that could only fit in semi-trucks. No matter what their size, the traveling medicine shows were always the most fun and unique productions to be featured in small and rural communities. In the last two decades America has seen a resurgence of the type of entertainment featured in the snake oil shows. We are honored to be a part of that revival and to be able to present to you some of the most talented and acclaimed performers working in these fields today.
Live entertainment has always been a force that unifies communities and connects all of us to one another. Through performances, workshops and networking opportunities, all set in the iconic cultural mecca that is New Orleans, the Snake Oil Festival seeks to create opportunities for artists and spectators alike to participate in a one of a kind, captivating and educational partnership, which helps the traditions of grassroots entertainment to thrive.
Join us for this amazing experience in June 24, 25 and 26, 2016!
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Above is our promo video by Jian Bastille, who also composed and performed the song. Choose full-screen, make sure it's on 1080p HD, and turn it up! (Bass Boost recommended!)
V.I.P. EXPECTED TO SELL OUT EARLY
THREE DAYS OF SHOWS, WORKSHOPS, PARTIES, AND CREATIVE DEBAUCHERY!
CHECK BACK HERE FOR WORKSHOPS AND CLASSES
THE CARNIVAL AT THE CROSSROADS - Friday, June 24th - The Carnival at The Crossroads kicks off the three day festival weekend by taking you back in time to a forgotten era when the traveling carnival reigned supreme as Americas premier form of entertainment. Journey into the world of the most daring, desirous, and diabolical variety artists working in the circus and sideshow revival today. Human blockheads, burlesque dancers, glass walkers, musicians, aerialists, belly dancers, hoopers, freaks, and all manner of debaucherous and wicked entertainers will be assembled to give you a belly full of the “other show business”. Headlining this mad circus will be DC's own Sideshow Gal, Mab Just Mab who combines stunts with theater, music and comedy to give you classic sideshow with a taste of vaudeville. Coney Island legend, the Gentleman Oddity, Mr. Donny Vomit will be your host and guide for the evening. He’ll not only introduce you to some of the best variety performers in the business, but also regale you with amazing feats of danger!
Starring: Arty Dodger - Heather Loop - Bette Machete - Cosmic Kittens (Solar Gretch and FerEliz) - Felix Elixir - Gar Gar - LeTabby Lexington - Maria Bella - Martika - Nola Amizigh Bellydance - Perse Fanny and Gideon Hodge - Remy Dee.
HOOCHIE COOCHIE BABYLON - Saturday, June 25th - For the second day of Snake Oil Festival we are proud to present our night of glamour, glitter, and gluttony, Hoochie Coochie Babylon! Join us as we feast our senses on the excesses of burlesque and sideshow carnival sin! Hoochie Coochie Babylon will feature sword swallowing, snake dancing, the human blockhead, glass walking, the bed of nails, aerial arts, gender bending, belly dancing, and of course decadent striptease. The night will be headlined by Marlo Marquise of Albuquerque, NM and Karolina Lux of Portland, OR. Known as Le Chic Freak and The Risk in Risqué, Marlo Marquise is an internationally acclaimed sideshow, cabaret, suspension and impalement artist who mixes olde school sideshow stunts with classic burlesque glamour and femininity. Karolina Lux is a multi-talented and internationally touring belly dancer, musician, burlesque dancer and creator of a style of dance known as Belly-Brass, where "trumpet-playing and belly dancing find an unexpected but harmonious union". Leading the evenings Bacchanal of extravagant burlesque and variety will be New Orleans undisputed Queen of Drag, and our Mister S of Ceremonies, Vinsantos DeFonte. And, before Hoochie Coochie Babylon begins, come early at 7:00p.m. to hear acclaimed sideshow historian, James Taylor weave the tale of Half as Old as Time (A Lecture on Novelty & Variety Entertainment History), against the backdrop of his cabinet of curiosities and oddities collection.
Come lust with us and share in the arts of the sideshow, circus, comedy, and more with our featured acts:
Starring: Ammunition - Angela Eve - Bella Blue - Charlotte Treuse and Nikki le Villain - Donny Vomit - Danny Borneo - Eva la Feva - Lita Deadly - Kitson Sass and Pistol Prudence - Nox Falls - Salem - Shimmy Shakti - Ula Uberbusen.
THE UNHOLY ROLLER REVIVAL - Sunday, June 26th -After a weekend of sinning and wallowing in the depths of depravity with the Snake Oil Festival, YOU WILL NEED SALVATION! Brothers and Sisters, step right up and receive forgiveness, mercies, and blessings for a nominal and inconsequential fee! Snake Oil closes out the weekend by bringing you the Unholy Roller Revival! The Unholy Roller Revival is a variety show with all of the fire and brimstone of an old time Pentecostal tent revival, but with none of the pesky damnation and judgment. Through theatrical performances mimicking the charismatic religious movements of the early 1900s, The Unholy Roller Revival takes you on a journey to a bygone era when dancing ladies, musical acts and sideshows followed religious revivals to towns far and wide, to entertain and save the public, while relieving them of a few dollars at the same time. This event pays homage to that era by rolling up all of the live music, dancing, sideshow and preaching into one hilarious show that lampoons religion and is guaranteed to have you in the aisles, jumping up and down screaming, “HALLELUJAH"! Produced by Little Luna and starring the preacher of perversion, The Reverend Pastor Father Brother Ben Wisdom and the live music of The Asylum Chorus and Dr. Sick which will accompany every act! Featuring some of the most sanctified and pious performers in the world!
Starring: Ember Blaize - Kitson Sass - Lune Noirr - Mariposa Bop - Mena Domina - Miranda Tempest - Queenie OHart - Tsarina Hellfire
Le Shimmy!: A crash course in “Belly-esque” with Karolina Lux Saturday, June 25, 1:00pm You're mesmerized by belly dance and titillated by burlesque. Both sensual art forms exult in the beauty of femininity, grace, flirtatiousness, the divine feminine, and FUN! Though similar in essence, the styles are different in performance. Le Shimmy helps you bring the playful qualities of burlesque and vaudeville performance to your dance, and the sensuous, powerful technique of belly dance to your bump-n-grind, or as an art on it's own. We will start with some history of burlesque and its overlapping roots with belly dance, move on to some fun warm-ups to pump your expressions up to larger-than-life proportions and learn a short choreography. In your next performance, you’ll shimmy, blow a kiss and leave em’ wanting more!
Stage Craft with Mab Just Mab: Saturday, June 25, 2:00pm Learn how to develop your skills as a performer with D.C.'s own Sideshow Girl, Mab Just Mab. Show Craft! or How to do what you do, BETTER! We will talk about structuring your act, connecting to the audience, happy accidents, and handling hecklers. Bring some ideas you want to see workshopped.
Bounce Workshop with Heather Loop: Saturday, June 25, 3:00pm Learn the art of New Orlean's own unique dance style, "Bounce", with Heather Loop. Heather has been teaching bounce classes for years and is recognized as one of the top instructors in this one of a kind dance art form. Heather Loop has toured with and appeared in videos for internationally famous Bounce artist Big Freedia.
James Taylor - Half as Old as Time (A Lecture on Novelty & Variety Entertainment History): Saturday, June 25, 7:00pm Show writer William Lindsay Gresham described the carnival as a canvas city, rose red and by tradition half as old as time. Novelty & variety entertainment doesn’t live entirely under canvas, of course. But as the man who's been called the worlds foremost authority on sideshow, James Taylor contends its the novelty & variety business that’s the oldest form of amusement and the real show biz. Ranging widely (and wildly) over the past few centuries and into tomorrow. Taylor hits the bases other show historians ignore, from circus and carnival, dime museums and sideshows, burlesque and world’s fair shows and all the business in between. With over four decades in the entertainment business, over half of which has been in the other show biz of novelty & variety, Taylor shows why its the business you’ll remember till the longest day ya live.
Producing and Directing Variety Shows Based On Your Vision with Angela Eve: Sunday, June 26, 1:00pm Well known Chicago and New Orleans based performer and producer Angela Eve will show you the ins and outs of producing your very own variety show. From moving up from the underground to branding your production for mainstream consumption. Angela Eve will show you how to produce a great show on a limited budget and have em’ lined up around the block!
Glass Walking Workshop with Marlo Marquise: Sunday, June 26, 2:00pm An all- inclusive workshop for beginners and performers taught by world renowned sideshow and suspension artist, Marlo Marquise. Marlo will teach you the cultural origins and ritual behind the modern trend of walking on glass, show you how to become an expert in the safety behind the skill of being a pain proof, harm proof glass walker with a two- part safety outline and give you the knowledge needed to create your own safe materials. This class includes a physical introduction to the glass itself! You will learn how to incorporate glass into any performance.
Behind The Drag, Workshop with Vinsantos DeFonte: Sunday, June 26, 3:00pm BEHIND THE DRAG. Ever wonder what it takes to transform a man into a lady or a lady into more of a lady? Join Vinsantos for this eye opening tutorial. In this tutorial you will get a birds eye view of the secrets behind Drag makeup and body transformation. There will also be a discussion on what makes a solid and memorable performer. These tips and tricks can be translated and useful to all mediums of the performing arts. No material needed. Come prepared with an open mind and an open heart.
No Workshops or Classes Friday.
SNAKE OIL FESTIVAL 2016 IS PUT TOGETHER BY
Design / Associate Producer
SNAKE OIL FESTIVAL 2015 RECAP VIDEO sponsored by TURTLE CREEK COFFEE
MUSIC & VIDEO BY JIAN BASTILLE - TURN UP THE VOLUME!