Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Step Right Up (or, A Really Long Post)

Like I said in an earlier post, I've modified the exact theme of Troupe Macabre ever so slightly. The original theme was simply "carnival"; I thought it would be more interesting to focus on a part of carnivals that isn't really done in haunts: Sideshow! Granted, I'm on a budget, so I can't very well hire a bunch of performers to wonder around doing their stunts, like sword swallowing, the Human Blockhead, fire-eating, and all other forms of extreme entertainment (it's neat idea, though). So what I'll be doing instead is turning my sidewalk into a midway, and my front porch into a circus freak museum. Instead showcasing "freaks" which would have people more ticked off than scarred, MY museum would display creepy "artifacts" like shrunken heads, the Fiji Mermaid, the Mummy, and much more! Now for the real meat of my post today: the biggest influence over my haunt this year, the Carnival Diablo Circus Sideshow!!!
This sideshow has a long and interesting history. It's run out of Toronto Canada, by owner Scott McCelland, AKA "Nikolia Diablo" who performs as head freak and Ringmonster of the show. It originally opened as a tourist attraction in Calgary, but became so popular it took to the road. Scott apparently got his inspiration from his grandfather, who owned Canada's largest traveling carnival, which ran from 1920 through 1968. This sideshow is different from the usual fare because it takes a theatrical approach to sideshow, instead the more common "Hey-look-what-I-can-do" approach. Also, it doesn't hurt that the whole show is done in the style of old fashioned horror movies. To give you an idea of the show, There's a video of the show below, but be warned: the video contains "Graphic and Unusual Performances" and keep in mind, NO SPECIAL EFFECTS HERE! It's all real. So please, don't little any little kids be watching this. It's, well, freaky:

Now for some more lighthearted fare: Scott also owns a traveling museum, called the Carnival Diablo World of Wonders. Here's a video of Scott, in character as "Nikolai" performing as the barker. Don't worry - this one is kid-friendly:

Both barker's spiels in the videos have given me inspiration, as I'll be playing the barker at my haunt. Well, gotta run. For those interested, here's the Carnival Diablo website:

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