Every Memorial Day Weekend for the past ELEVEN years artists and audiences have flocked to to Asheville from around the world for the Americana Burlesque & Sideshow Festival, aka ABSFest. With emphasis on variety in entertainment, artistic empowerment and nurturing creativity, ABSFest has solidly defined itself as ‘not just another burlesque festival. since its inception.
ABSFest producer Lauren ‘Madame Onca’ O’Leary curates a cast of local, national, and international talent, while also working closely with local businesses to give the festival a uniquely Asheville feel – full of the bohemian community spirit that Ashevillians know and love.
This year’s headliner is the epic Golden Glamazon, Sydni Deveraux, from NYC. She will be the crowning jewel of the Saturday Spectacular at the Orange Peel, hosted by the vintage vixen, Carmel Clavin, vaudeville entertainer and producer of the Shenandoah Valley Fringe Festival.
Festival-goers at the Grey Eagle will enjoy our bigger-then-ever Friday show, presenting FanDom homage acts to all the greats. We’ve invited artists to present tribute pieces to everything you’ve ever loved, from Queen, Spinal Tap, Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, the Muppets and more. Close the weekend out with our Sunday Burlesque Brunch: Monster Edition, hosted at the Grey Eagle by Dr. Dour and Peach, accomplished ethnocryptozoomusicologists of DC.
This year’s Artist Recognition Award will go beloved community members, Jen and Jim Lazoum, of LaZoom Bus Tours, with pomp and ceremony at the Saturday Spectacular.
Beyond the performance festivities, the ABSFest Seminary will also be offering workshops taught by headliners and other accomplished artists where participants can learn the art of the tease, ukulele, and more.