Go Deeper Happy Hour on the Fringe: John Jarboe

Happy Hour on the Fringe: John Jarboe

Posted December 5th, 2019

On this episode of Happy Hour on the Fringe we talked with John Jarboe, creator of the long-running monthly Get Pegged Cabaret series and founder of the Bearded Ladies Cabaret, about the Get Pegged performance at FringeArts on November 15, 2019 and the curatorial process behind Get Pegged. Listen as we talk about the people who have inspired him, along with the origins of the Bearded Ladies Cabaret.

Listen to the episode and read the transcript below.

[Music Intro]
Zach: Hello, and welcome to Happy Hour on the Fringe. FringeArts is Philadelphia’s premier presenter of contemporary performing arts. I am Zach Blackwood, an artistic producer here at FringeArts.

Katy: And I’m Katy, another artistic producer here at FringeArts. We invite you to pour one up and enjoy our conversations with some of the most imaginative people on this plane of existence.

Zach: Today, we’re talking to long-time Fringe partner John Jarboe, who is the founder of the Bearded Ladies Cabaret and also the creator of Get Pegged Cabaret here at FringeArts and also was just curated in this Fringe Festival in 2019 with a show called Late Night Snacks that turned an old auto body shop into a cabaret dreamscape.

Katy: Welcome, John. We were just saying it’s crazy you haven’t been on the podcast yet, so thanks for joining us today.

John: I’m glad to be here. I’m at a lot of happy hours, and normally, they’re not recorded.

Zach: She’s in demand, so I can see maybe why it might’ve been difficult to line up our schedules before now. You’ve got a lot going on, even going into the end of this year, right?

John: Yeah, we do. We love partnership at the Bearded Ladies in a sort of polyamorous sense of the word, so there are many people that we’re flirting with and dating around the city, but grateful to be here.

Katy: Awesome. For our listeners out there, the Bearded Ladies Cabaret is your long-running venture in Philadelphia, which is a real stalwart of the performing arts scene here, and it’s been around for a while, so we wanted to take a moment to talk about that and about Get Pegged, your partnership with us here. And maybe we can just start by looking at the Beards. How has that organization changed over time, what has remained consistent, and what are you hoping to continue to shift as you move forward?

John: We’re about 10 years old now. We’re going on our 10th season.

Zach: That’s great.

John: We look six years old. That’s horrifying. We’ve been around for 10 years, and we started out of my living room in West Philly. I think that we’ve functioned very much like a little barnacle in the city, a sort of parasite that attaches to larger organizations and works in collaboration with them to make work that is queer very visible but with integrity. And I think what we’re realizing in the past couple of years is that we are also a kind of host, that we’ve become a larger organization, and so we’re both kind of the whale and the barnacle in the city.Our work has shifted to being from a troupe of artists working in my West Philadelphia living room to being also a host organization that is extending some of the generosity and the partnership that we’ve found with places like FringeArts and the Wilma Theater and Opera Philadelphia to other artists often in the cabaret or cabaret-adjacent fields.

I’d just say that we really love being in intimate conversation with people and with our audiences.We’re often doing work that sits on your lap, that tells you a story, that if you speak or express your humanity will acknowledge your humanity. And in that way, you can create spaces of accountability and presence and consent and an actual conversation that is distinct from virtual planes and performances that don’t require you to show up in the same way.

Zach: That’s exciting. We don’t think of you as a barnacle.

John: Really?

Zach: Well, no. I think what’s interesting about the Bearded Ladies as a company is the Bearded Ladies has grown by being kind of a resident company of the whole city of Philadelphia, which I think is a really, really interesting approach, and I don’t know. It’s just been really, really exciting. I remember the first time I encountered the Beards was when I was running payroll for Wide Awake as a part of 2013, so it’s interesting.It’s been a long, long way, but that was, of course, a program at the Kimmel Center and a really, really large scale one, but then you’ve also worked with the Wilma. You’ve worked with the. You’re everywhere, but Get Pegged is something that we’ve been doing together for now almost five years, right?

John: Five years?

Zach: February 2020 will be …

Katy: I think will be our fourth year.

John: Fourth year.

Katy: 16, 17, 18, 19 –

Zach: But we did all of 16. It started February of 2016, and that’s a year, so one year anniversary would be 17; two years would be 18; three years, 19. Oh, that’s how math works.

John: We’re on 19.

Katy: It is four years.

Zach: Four years. Four years.

Katy: To our listeners out there.

Zach: That’s easy, so it’s graduating college in a certain way.

John: It feels like five, and –

Zach: Stop this. No, it doesn’t. It feels like a blink of an eye. But so now, as you’re graduating kind of with your undergraduate degree in Get Pegged, what are you looking forward to kind of in the expansion of the project? Are there dream guests, dream art installations that join us? I’m thinking about Adrian Trescott’s  cardboard piano.

John: Oh, my God.

Zach: There have just been so many really beautiful moments.

John: I recently put together a list of all of the artists that we programmed together at Get Pegged, and it makes me really proud. I think it’s a special program. It’s a one night stand between a local artist and a national international artist, and I think with all the Beards’ work and with a lot of the work you’re doing at FringeArts, it’s not about cultivating any one audience. It’s about bringing people together, and I think a lot of the great things about cabaret is that the performance in cabaret is the performance of the space and the audience in the space as much as it is the performer. I think that we’ve done some really fun, exciting, disturbing, shocking work, and I’m excited to continue doing that.

I would say I really want to get Dina Martina in here, who’s an artist from Seattle. If you don’t know Dina Martina, she’s a brilliant cabaret performer and drag personality. I would love to work with Jomama Jones  from New York, who is a channeler. Sometimes confused with a direct performer but is a beautiful choreographer, channeler, singer, songwriter, tarot card reader based out of New York. Those are two of my faves, but I’m also curating in collaboration with you, Zach, and you, Katy, dreams that you’re thinking about as well.

Katy: And that’s been one of the joys of working on this program with you, John, and just to take a second, my first experience of Get Pegged was the day I came to do a day-long interview at FringeArts, which was about a year and a half ago.

Zach: It was really fun.

Katy: And it was a long day meeting many people on the board here and many of my now colleagues here, which was amazing. And then I had dinner with Nick, and then I came to Get Pegged at 10:30, and it was the Get Pegged that was kind of looking towards Do You Want a Cookie?

Zach: Looking towards Late Night Snacks. Oh, Do You Want a Cookie?

John: Oh, crap.

Zach: That was the cookie jar.

Katy: It was a two hour, almost maybe even two and a half hour extravaganza, and it was incredible.

Zach: With Messi on the water tower, yes.

John: Wow.

Katy: And Adrian was there, and there were a lot of beautiful group numbers but also maybe as many as 10 different artists from all corners of the globe. And it was a real moment where I was like, “Whoa, FringeArts is doing crazy stuff.”

Zach: On stage?

Katy: I have been pushed to my limit in terms of what I’ve encountered in this day, and that’s where I want to be working. My God, I want to work in a place that has people climbing through every aspect of this restaurant and that is really privileging queer voices and people who might not be represented in the same way and carving out space for them and doing it in a really joyful way. I’m excited for us to keep doing that kind of work in Get Pegged. One thing we’ve talked about that I’m curious about is how to incorporate dance more.

Katy: Get Pegged has been primarily music-focused, which makes so much sense, and yet one of the things I love about the Beards in general is the way that it brings in people from Philadelphia who might not consider themselves a cabaret artist and gives them a platform to explore what that might mean. And that can mean a million different things, so I’d love to see how dance can maybe be a part of that as we keep working together in the future.

And I, like you, John, am so interested in the history of cabaret too and its relationship to performance art and the history kind of within the New York or the broader cosmopolitan scene in this country in the last 40 years. I think we’re also interested in what would it mean for someone like Dancenoise or someone like Carmelita Tropicana, who I really see as the fore-mothers to this kind of program and getting them in as well, so a very multi-generational look at it.

Zach: I definitely echo all of that. I think the work that we’ve gotten to do in kind of bringing poets in the Get Pegged fold has been really, really exciting for me, but I don’t know. I’m also really interested in Charlene Incarnate, which I know you share as well, and –

Katy: Love her.

Zach: And kind of people who are doing this almost pop and rock cabaret moment that feels really, I don’t know, interesting and spicy to me. Sateen is another group who I would so, so, so love to see do a Get Pegged. Who else? Meow Meow. Oh, my gosh. Bernie Dieter. There are so, so many people who I’ve just seen kind of just moving around in Australia and kind of in the UK where there’s really, really hot cabaret scenes as well.Jack Rook is one, actually. A really great storyteller from England who previously worked on the BBC really kind of covering just issues for queer youth and kind of the “It gets better” movement in the UK and then really very publicly said,

“This work of reporting on these stories is really challenging for me, and I would like to do something else,” and now creates all kinds of really beautiful storytelling shows about just kind of growing up as a young queer kid and body issues and growing up in this kind of connected app society as a queer person. Also, he’s a bit younger than me so really grew up kind of in that zone, that strike zone, so it’s interesting to kind of hear that voice as well.

John: I feel like if you’re listening, you’re getting a sense of what curatorial conversations talk like or sound like, so this is all about putting local artists on dates with national international artists. If you’re local, and you’re listening, hit us up.

Zach: Or if you have a great superstar cabaret artist that we don’t know about

John: That you want to date.

Zach: You’re always welcome to send a cute little email over to FringeArts, and it will reach us. Yes.

Katy: And I love this concept of the date where so much of what we’re trying to do is have deep relationships, and we care about people in the long term 100 percent, but I think it’s also great to be like, “We’re going to try it.” And this is not necessarily a low-stakes environment, but it’s a permissive environment. It’s an environment filled with care where we’re going to build a crash pad for you; where if you want to try to sing for the first time in your God-given life, we’re here for it. Go for it. And I think that is something really special within the field more broadly but particularly within Philadelphia. And I’m grateful that we can carve that space.

Zach: And I think the data approach flattens out the hierarchy in a really, really specific way. It’s not like resident artists and presenting organization inviting this guest artist in. It really is seen as this exchange where we’re both going to learn more about each other’s work, that it’s really about kind of our shared development as a field.

Katy: Absolutely, and building those relationships. It was great to hear you talk, John, and this is one of the things I love so much about cabaret, about the relationship between audience and performers. And for those of you who haven’t been to a Get Pegged, it happens within our resident restaurant, La Peg. And so as an audience member, you can engage with the performance in many different ways. There are some people who sit in a table and eat a hamburger and fries while they watch it. There are other people who stand at the bar and have a drink of their choice. There are other people –

Zach: There are people who just make out in the back of the room.

Katy: 100 percent.

Zach: That would be me, but thanks for that.

Katy: I think, John, that’s one of the things we also wanted to talk about is that the Beards and FringeArts work really carefully and sensitively to make it a care-foregrounded experience, and so how does that impact the type of audience that we are hoping to get to these performances and the very different levels of experience one could have at a it Get Pegged?

John: I think we’re in a dynamic, evolving conversation about the cabaret form and also values of consent to experience. If you’re interaction-adverse, you can still come. You’re welcome to come to a Get Pegged, and there are tools that we will give you on the day to signal that you don’t want interaction –

Katy: Or that you want a particular kind of interaction. Some people are like, “Oh, please do not touch me, but I am happy to be seated at the bar while you’re performing on the bar.”

John: Totally, so it’s about you having power to control your experience. And what’s amazing about that is I think that that’s sometimes seen as limiting to the art, but my experience over the past few years is that it actually allows the art to go further because everyone feels like they’re in a respectful, thoughtful environment. And I don’t quite believe in safe spaces. I don’t believe in that language, so it’s not a safe space, but it should be a thoughtful, healthy space where artists and audience can be a little dangerous and really try something new, which means that it’s hard to say, “You can expect this if you come to Get Pegged.”What you can expect is that I will be hosting, or someone that the Beards and FringeArts choose will be hosting, and there will be a certain amount of caretaking.

The host’s name is Peg. It’s Get Pegged at La Peg with Peg, and Peg is not always happy that you’re there, especially if you came from Dave and Buster’s, but Peg will empower you and will give you the kind of context and care that you need to get you through your evening. It’s not about you liking the performers. It’s not about you getting your money’s worth, and it’s very accessible in terms of pricing too. I think it’s eight bucks?

Katy: It’s eight bucks.

John: But it is about giving you an experience that maybe you needed, maybe you didn’t know you needed.

Zach: What I always love to see is somebody who just happened to be walking by and saw the performance through the window and maybe doesn’t come inside, but they stand, and they just kind of look. And they take it in, and you can see that they’re having this kind of performance experience they didn’t expect to have that night, and that’s all very interesting to me. And whether they come in or they don’t, I always think it’s interesting. You stop, and you look through this window, and you see this thing going on in there, and then you decide if it’s for you or not. And if it is, that’s great. I think it’s for everybody. If it isn’t, thank you for not coming in and being disruptive, but I always think that’s really interesting, kind of how the ambient neighborhood community engages with Get Pegged and all the people who might already be in our bar when a Get Pegged starts who might not know what they’re getting into –

John: That’s fun.

Zach: And find themselves with a full surprise and delight moment. I’ve got so many patrons come up to me and be like, “I had no clue this was happening. I’m so excited that I was here. I just came in for champagne and a pound of wings, but this is great.”

John: I’ve interrupted a few dates before, some to great effect and some to not so great effect.

Zach: Me too, but never at Get Pegged.

John: I do want to say that I feel like what’s special about Get Pegged too in the context of the city is a lot of this experimental work is happening in the nightlife scene and in spaces like in the gayborhood, et cetera, but it’s never resourced the way that it is here. What’s I think particularly special about the partnership with FringeArts is you’re allowing the Bearded Ladies and these performers to be resourced in their experimentation and to value them as other artists who are maybe in more traditional, more easily consumed and recognizable forms are resourced. And that’s not only just a fee, but that’s also maybe housing or a tech crew that’s there and present and actually lighting them so that you’re not holding a flashlight while you perform, and … unless you want to … that feels really special and unique.

Katy: And I think it goes the opposite way too in terms of just our recognition as an institution that has some clout, I would like to think, saying that that art is valuable, and that art should be happening in more traditional theatrical institutions as much as it should be happening in a bar in the gayborhood, and that it’s not relegated to Wednesdays.

Zach: Well, and one other facet of working with the Beards that I deeply enjoy is the sensitivity and care-foregrounded way in which, John, you and your staff approach every part of the production process. I think when we have meetings together, it’s always so tender, and I think we go in, and we check in with each other. It’s, “How are you? Kind of what’s in your pockets going into this meeting? No, not what’s going on with you professionally, not what meeting do you have after this, but how are you today? How are you feeling? Are you primed and ready for this conversation?” And I guess my question is more kind of in what ways are you and the Beards working to make the kind of arts administration part of cabaret more sensitive and more equitable?

John: I think I try not to think too differently about those spaces. I try not to think that there are different values in the performance space as there are in the … maybe there are different expectations obviously, but in the administrating space, how do you be human-valued in all of the spaces? And I think the hard thing in administrative spaces is that a lot of that work is invisible, especially if it’s done really well.

You’re like, “Oh, I didn’t think about all that effort,” so how can you give love and visibility to that is something that the Beards are doing. And I have a great team. Brandi Burgess  is our general manager. Dan O’Neil  is our artistic producer. Sally Ollove is our associate artistic director, and we’ve got Heath Allen and Rebecca Kanach are Beard’s company members, so I’ve got a really great team. And obviously, we’re fairly promiscuous, so as I say, partners all around the city that are working together to make sure that our endeavors into interdisciplinarity have integrity and thought behind them. I hope that answers your question.

And there just so many different avenues and ways we’re talking about health. But if you’re talking about education, the Elevator Repair Service’s take on Gatz or take on Hemingway, that like is a much more sort of interesting and vibrant way of experiencing literature than maybe another dry reading of a book that you might hear of somewhere else. And so just adding so much more richness to the way that we layer in things that are part of our history. I just, I get so much out of it from so many different ways and I wish more people would plug in. I’m always shocked when I come to Philadelphia and I get off the train at 30th street and hop in the cab and people don’t even know the festival is going on. And I’m like, how is that possible?

Zach: Well, and it goes way beyond the administrative part. What you’re talking about as far as how we can make the performance space more accessible to two different people is so, so interesting, but also, every time I see a show by the Beards at any institution, it is priced in a way that is accessible. And I think that’s a big part of what you’re all doing, and I think there’s always a VIP level too. You can kind of self-select into all of these different levels of engagement, but there is always a way to get in and see the work, and I think that’s really, deeply important and inspiring. And because you work with so many institutions, I think it really does advance the field locally to have the Beards as this kind of instigent for a more accessible kind of cabaret environment.

We do feel like we’re a guinea pig of the city. We’ll be like the first ones to work with the PMA on a certain kind of program, and then we’ll try all the things. We’ll break all of the art, and then they’ll know what to do next time, we do feel like we’ve, I mean, tried to be a good partner and instill good values. And now, we’re experiencing that on another level because we have a follicle program with the Beards that gives artists micro-grants; and a cabaret residency program, which is a more expansive $2,000 to work with a partner on a project.

And we’re now having conversations about like, “Oh, if we’re giving this resource to an artist, how can we also gently say, ‘Our intention is that you are paid with this resource’?” But how do we learn from people’s values who have less resources, have more resources than ours, and how can we instill good values of artist care as we’re engaging with artists that come from many different walks of life in the city?

That’s really fascinating. We’re learning a lot and hopefully offering a lot in that work, and that’s some of the work that the Beards do that I don’t think is often visible is the way in which we’re cultivating community and trying to … this is maybe a lingo, but institutionalize tiny risks and experimentation, which is what the cabaret form is all about is actually try it.

Try it in front of an audience. Try the interaction and see how it goes, and then maybe it expands into a bigger piece for the theater or something, or maybe it doesn’t. Maybe what it is is a tiny experiment that continues to be that size.

Katy: Well, I know, John, as the Beards have grown bigger and older, you’ve also started doing more touring as well, whether it’s across the United States or internationally, and I know that you have learned a lot about different cabaret fields abroad or further afield, and it’s interesting to hear how then you can bring those back to Philly and work to advance our city and our arts ecosystem. And so what are some of the things that you’ve seen other places do that you’re hoping to bring here?

John: Wow, that’s a good question. I think what’s fascinating about the form is it’s a form that’s really steeped in the local and the local vernacular, so to go to Germany and go to Berlin and see cabaret, it’s really hard to translate because it’s very local, which is what I love about it. It’s like we’re making work by Philadelphians for Philadelphians, and the Beards kind of hear that, and then we bring 14 artists from around the world to Philly to kind of give their prismatic definition of cabaret, so I’m constantly in a dialogue about what is shared in this approach and what is different.

Mexico City, the history of cabaret there is very, very political. It’s more of a ground-up kind of thing. There’s a cabaret festival run by a bunch of queers, and whereas French cabaret has become more museum-like and pushed into the corners or caves around the city and can feel very nostalgic. In terms of what to bring, I mean, I have approaches. I’m like, “Oh, that’s a Bridget Everett tactic,” or, “That’s a Meow Meow tactic,” et cetera. And when I bring those into my own practice as an artist, or I recognize that in other people’s work, I try to also make sure that I acknowledge where that history comes from.

Katy: That’s huge.

John: I think acknowledging the connections and where you learn what you’re learning is part of how we’re bringing in the history, but mostly, it’s about bringing the people here, and some of those people, you can’t bring. There’s an artist named Juwelia Soraya in Berlin who is one of my favorite cabaret artists in the world, and she performs in a little gallery of paintings of herself, mostly nude.

Zach: Oh, my gosh. Obsessed.

John: With a little mix tape player and a microphone, like a kid’s tape player, sometimes a pianist, and she’s a brilliant visual artist and performer. And I’m like, “You can’t bring you Juwelia without bringing all of her paintings, and I don’t have that kind of money.”

Zach: Putting their whole house up on.

John: And even then, what she’s talking about is what happened down the street earlier that week, what’s in the local news, so I guess also what I carry with me as I travel to those places is a permission to speak directly to the people that I’m talking to. I feel like sometimes as artists, we’re like, “How do we get it outside of Philly? How do we break the Philly bubble?”

And I want to do that too. Everyone wants to, but I think also, Philly is an amazing city to make work in, and there’s a kind of unique work that’s coming out of Philly because of the resources and the ecosystem that we live in. Embracing that, I think, is a lesson that I’ve learned from other cabaret places because often, cabaret is made out of necessity. It doesn’t have that kind of higher art, “I want to be in these global festivals around the world, so my work has to look like X, Y, Z.” It’s like, “I’ve got a closet and a hairbrush and a little glitter, and that’s what I’m doing.”

Katy: I think that’s so important to remember. I feel like every artist we meet with is like, “How do I get my show to New York? How do I get my show to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival?” And we are so happy to talk with people about that and to extend our connections and talk about what makes that possible. But I think it’s great to remember that there is also so much here and that I think it’s really special to be able to speak to that locality in an incredibly foregrounded direct way, which doesn’t happen in the same way when you go on tour.

Zach: Oh, absolutely. I think about that a lot as well. It’s kind of, “Are you done doing things in Philly? You feel a completion as far as reaching audiences?” It’s like, no. There are still so, so many more partners. There are so, so many more audiences to reach. There are so many artists to work with. It’s this kind of a wellspring of arts and culture.

Katy: And I think the continuity is also worth it. I think yes, it’s great to continue to work your way through the city, but I also think it’s really valuable to be like, “We do Get Pegged six times a year, and maybe we reach the same 30 regulars who come to all six of them, and how incredible to be able to have that consistent check-in with those people and to bring them along for the ride.”

John: An artist that does this really well that we’re going to have at Get Pegged I believe in January is Magda. Magda is working on the right now. And what was Magda’s earlier piece about working in the children’s hospital?

Katy: I can’t remember what that was called.

Zach: Feral Wild Girl Child.

Katy: Thank you.

John: Oh, my god. It was so good.

Zach: That was so good.

John: It was so good.

Katy: It was really.

John: It felt very, very focused on Philadelphia and experiences in Philadelphia and was performed for 20 people in a little studio in the Bok Building and was one of the best things I saw last year. I feel like that’s the kind of work that we’re talking about, too. And of course, that should and will travel, but part of what makes it so special is that it was a conversation that needed to happen and needed to happen here first.

Katy: Definitely. A big plug to everybody: Our next Get Pegged is Friday, November 15th. Jan, of course, will be hosting as Peg. And we’re excited to have the local group Girl Poop along with New York-based artist Morgan Bassichis, so everybody come out.

Zach: It’s a can’t-miss event, friends. If you’ve not seen Girl Poop, and you’ve not seen Morgan Bassichis, I feel deeply for you, and the opportunity to see both of them in a single night … In a single night, you can see both of these fantastic artists. You got to get there, and you’ll love it. You’ll love it.

Katy: Hands down, we’ll change your life. But before we wrap up, we always ask our guests on the podcast, what are your highbrow and lowbrow inspirations?

Zach: Or current obsessions. You can take it anywhere you want, really, truly. And we’ll do one if you’ll do one.

John: Fleabag. Is that highbrow or lowbrow?

Katy: I think that’s the question.

John: It’s super satisfying. And in terms of cabaret, it’s really hard to talk directly to an audience through a camera, and the only people that do that super well are Mr. Rogers, and Phoebe is an incredible actor. And I’m like, “Wow, you’re really making me feel talked to right now,” so that may hit both of those for me. But maybe another highbrow thing is I’m obsessed with Anthony Roth Costanzo, who –

Katy: Buying my tickets to Akhnaten today.

Zach: I know, who was just on another great kind of contemporary art podcast, Dance And Stuff. Definitely listen to the ARC episode of Dance And Stuff. It’s very, very good.

John: And Fresh Air, recently with Terry Gross, whoever that is.

Zach: Katy, any highbrow lowbrow obsessions right now?

Katy: Was not prepared. Let’s see. Highbrow obsession, I am very excited to see Akhnaten, which both looks like the campiest opera I’ve ever seen and the best thing. I’ve read about it so much, but it’s actually never been seen in New York before, and involves Gandini Juggling, which should be incredible. I can’t wait to see highbrow and lowbrow really collide when I go see that in December in New York. The lowbrow inspirations, hard for me to say.

Zach: You watched any good TV?

Katy: To keep it really real on the podcast, I’m watching Modern Love right now on Amazon, which comes out of a essay that is published in the New York Times style section once a week that talks about love in really expansive ways. It’s not even always romantic. It is all kinds of relationships, and I have really loved reading those essays. Some of these episodes are really amiss, and some of them are more charming than others, but I do enjoy watching it. That’s true. Zach?

Zach: I would say highbrow, I’ve just been reading a lot right now. I just finally read. I’m the last person to read this, I promise. Everyone else had read this book already. It’s a long-form erasure poem that takes all of its controlled vocabulary from Bram Stoker’s Dracula to talk a little bit about queerness and identity, and it’s really, really special and beautiful. And I can read about two poems at a time before I’m like, “I have reached capacity as far as just the depth and incisiveness of the work.”

And then my lowbrow, I don’t know. Is it horror movie marathons? Because I’ve been very into that right now, but Halloween just ended. No, you know what? It’s Catherine the Great on HBO. I can’t stop watching it. It’s Helen Mirren as Catherine the Great. Yes. It’s a gay Fantasia, and I don’t understand why the girls aren’t talking. I’m upset.

Katy: Well, also, I think the The Crown

Zach: Helen Prospero Mirren, Oh, The Crown” as well. Oh, yes. Yes, yes, yes.

Katy: The Crown comes back tonight with Helena Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret, which I just can’t wait for. That’s my lowbrow inspiration.

John: There’s some kind of horse joke that I’m just inserting into this. I’m not saying what it is.

Zach: Great.

Katy: We’ll let you all ruminate on that, but thank you so much, John, for joining us for this episode of Happy Hour On the Fringe. We hope to see you all at Get Pegged on November 15th at 10:30 PM in La Peg.

Zach: Make sure you follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, and download the FringeArts app, and visit to see more of our upcoming programming including Martha Graham Cracker, Get Pegged, and so much more. John, where can we see more on what the Bearded Ladies are doing?

John: We are doing a trestle engagement party, which is a fancy fundraiser for us, on November 21st. And then on December 7th, we’re doing All I Want For Christmas is a Dead Chanteuse, which is an Edith Piaf holiday show featuring Tareke Ortiz  from Mexico City is coming into town to do a special performance at World Cafe Live. If we sell out the first show, there will be a second show, so get your tickets now, and there is a promo code with that, so email us. Not all of our partners will let us do pay what you decide, so just let us know, and we’ll make sure that you’re covered.

Zach: Well, thank you so, so much, and that’s been Happy Hour On the Fringe.

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