From Poe to Steampunk - Keeping the Party Going in Cincinnati

The Poe Show , a night of ooey, gooey, dark richness, is cold and dead now. But, still there lingers a lovely, warm, thump, thump, thump flowing through the veins.  I, Teri H. from the outside looking in, thought it was a masterful job of tingling all our senses to get to the depth, the point and the joy of it all, the not-too-clever cleverness and the respect given to the heart and soul of Poe. From the original music to the original choreography, I say Bravo to it all.

But there’s more - here’s a few memories from the lovely Katherine Robb on the creative process and the final performance from the perspective of a dancer on the inside looking out:  KP=Poe-rave-kat-dan-273


As we spent the afternoon tying ravens to trees, and placing skulls, candles and antique knick knacks from our homes around the 2nd floor of the York Street Café the excitement in the air was almost tangible. We kept smiling brightly at one another as we handed each other a piece of tape, a pair of scissors or one of Ashley’s amazing Red Velvet Cake Balls and squealed, “I can’t believe it’s today!”

We finished decorating and gathered for one final run through and then…that was it. Ready or not, it was time to don our costumes and makeup and do the Poe Show….in front of people

Nervous and completely bursting at the seams with excitement, the dancers held hands backstage and whispered encouragement to each other as our Master of Ceremonies, Loren the Black strode out and silenced the audience with one single, strong look and a tap of his skull capped staff. We wished Camille luck as she went onstage to kill Heidi.  KP-Poe-terrie-heidi-ashley

The audience journeyed with us from Camille’s comedic turn on The Tell Tale Heart, to Ashley’s sultry vision of The Black Cat, and were hypnotized, as were we, by Sunova Starshine’s beautiful, surreal hula hoop dance to Dream Within a Dream. They dug those crazy bells, fell in love with Lenore, became unhinged by The Raven, ached for Loren’s lost Annabel Lee and feared The Red DeathKP-Poe-Heidi-Red-Masque-273


Though all the frenzied running around, changing of costumes, donning of headpieces, pinning and gluing that went on backstage, we heard them, we felt their energy and laughed, loved, ached and feared with them.

As we stood together for our group bow, we were truly humbled- really absolutely floored- at the sincerity and the enthusiasm from the crowd. We leapt way out of our box, and a gamble like that always brings about a certain vulnerability. We could not have felt richer or more rewarded by the reception that night.   KP-Poe-the bow-400

“How are you guys going to top this?” several guests asked.

I don’t know if it’s something Keshvar Project should try and “top”. One of the reasons the show worked is because the base material was so rich, inspiring and full of such a range of human emotion. Poe is something that so many can relate to, and at a variety of ages and life experiences.

The highlight of the entire adventure for me, was a woman who came up to me after the show. She had brought her son and was so excited, because, after seeing the show, he wanted to go home and read the stories and poems that the performance was based on.

The following day, I received this message from her: 

“My son and I had a fantastic time reading, and sometimes trying to understand Edgar Allan Poe. I didn't think he would be into it... I guess we do learn something new every day!”

Katherine Robb 





And a still-beating heartfelt thanks to magical Sunova Starshine, the masterful Zahara and the mesmerizing Mayan Ruins for completing the evening with tales of their own. Of course big thanks go to Loren the Black, Master of Ceremonies.  And a big, giant, warm, gushing hug full of heart for the crowd! 

Thanks for coming, thanks for looking the part, thanks for dancing and swinging and swaying!  Thanks, Thanks, Thanks!  Now, to the Time Traveler's Ball and some Steampunk socializing!  

Teri Hhhhh     KP-Poe-group-tribal-dance-300




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