Sideshow Gathering: A Review
Seventh Annual Sideshow Gathering convention is now
history but it will be long remembered. Frank
Kossa managed to book a series of stellar acts that
truly shocked, amazed and entertained the crowds of
hundreds over the three day affair held in
Wilkes-Barre PA, Oct. 31 - Nov. 2.
Tyler Fyre and Thrill Kill Jill appeared you knew
you were going to see one of the smoothest, well
routined acts in the business today. In
addition to their blockhead, nailboard and swords,
Jill wowed them with her snake act featuring two
eight foot boa constrictors!
Cheeky Monkey Sideshow returned this year with
several new bits. The talented M.C., Stephon
Walker bought the house down with his comic Swami
Yomahmi antics. The cast included Trinket,
contortionist, Sally Cinch the gal with the 12:
waist, Mysterion, comic magician and Damien Blade,
sword swallower. A five star line up of
top-notch performances by all.
City Sideshow was a headline production. This
youthful troupe, new to the convention, presented
many of the standard sideshow acts in new creative
routines. Johnny Neuirino was the superb
talker who kept the show moving and really served as
the narrator for the entire cast who performed
silently to great background music. Martin
Ling "The Suicide King" really earned his title as
he presented swords, glass walking and hooks in the
eyes. Danny Boreno shocked with the grinder in
the face, blow torch on the tongue, and power drill
blockhead. Reggie Bunmuncher lived up to her
last name. The sexy gal ate worms, bugs and
goldfish. She also did contortion and a
colorful whip act.
troupe operates like a well oiled machine! Don't
miss them if they play in your area.
this year was the fast colorful magic act of Steve
Hyde and Melaine, The cute gal was pierced by
a sword and sawed in half. The feature of
Hyde's act was when Melaine escaped from a strait
jacket while enclosed inside a sealed mail bag! The
double escape was new to me.
welcomed addition this year was the Knotty Bits
Sideshow with Gwyd the Unusual and the lovely Sylver
Frye. This dynamic duo presented a fast and
funny act of sideshow standards. Their
handling of volunteer assistants was a treat to
watch. Sylver's whip act with a guy from the
audience was one of the best I've seen. They
were a real crowd pleaser.
again this year was the Crispy Family Carnival.
Crispy did his pin cushion and body staple acts.
These are always shocking. He also had three
new members in his group. Flora and Fauna were
twin contortionists. They also did the bed of
nails and sword ladder. The Professor was a
young man who ate light bulbs.
was the super M.C. for the three days and also
conducted the auction of sideshow items. I
always enjoy cutting up jackpots with him.
Szauter did his memorable memory act as Dr. Wilson.
It was amazing! he also did several spots as a
street performer. His blindfolded walk over a
stage filled with animal traps had the audience on
the edge of their seats.
Professor Fountain did a strait jacket escape.
Beautiful Natasha Veruschka amazed with her belly
dance and sword swallowing.
Professor Sprocket [John Spitzer] demonstrated why
he is known as the Talker of Renown. The guy was
Stilianos' comic juggling act added a touch of
variety to the shows. He's good!
Rippington presented his routine consisting entirely
of animal traps. He is a great talker.
It is easy to see why he is a popular act at
thanks to all of the super guys and gals for so much
pleasure and for keeping the sideshow arts alive!
All photographs by
James Mundie copyright
all rights reserved
1- Sally Cinch and Walt Hudson
2- Rubber Baby Buggy Bouncer