Subterranean Cirqus, Lon Eldridge team up at The Honest Pint
A decade. That’s how long it’s been since Lazarus Hellgate and Pinkie, the Princess of Pain, started their sideshow act. It was a humble beginning, just a couple of crazy kids doing weird stuff to amuse, shock and gross out their friends.
Ten years later, the Subterranean Cirqus has morphed in a full-blown performance troupe, earning some national notoriety and the respect of their industry peers. They’ve made a name for themselves, both for their unique talents and for their ability to create their own market here in Chattanooga where none had been before.
Lazarus sums it up nicely:
“When we started, we performed wherever we could, doing shows with bands no one liked in places people didn’t go. Hardly anyone showed up and when they did, often as not we scared them away. Now? This town shows us a level of love and support I never would have believed possible. Audiences are open enough now to the sideshow concept that acts from all over the country want to come here. To see the guys that inspired me to do this in the first place, heroes really, treat us like peers is the most incredible thing!”
The big man trailed off then, weeping tears of joy and humility, which I promised not to include in the article.
The kids have assembled an incredible lineup of talent, not the least of which is Chattanooga’s sharp-dressed musician, Lon Eldridge, who has chosen the River City Rumpus as the proper event for releasing his latest album, “Long Gone.”
Fans of “American Horror Story” may recognize Eric Odditorium, the world’s only break-dancing sword-swallower (sword-swallowing break dancer?) Thunder Snow Cone’s Scarlett is bringing the burlesque while partner and suicide girl Smurfasaur SG will be displaying stunning acts of balance and contortion and Mikey Mangorilla will be juggling things that ought not to be juggled.
Tinderbox’s Big Bad Circus Sideshow Road Show from Kentucky will be making their Chattanooga debut with special guest Sanjula Vamana, who was rather famously buzzed off “America’s Got Talent” for a breathtaking deep muscle piercing. Zanzibar’s lovely Lacy Jo will be dancing and the Chattanooga Fire Cabaret will bring their pyrotechnic performance to the stage as well.
The Subterranean Cirqus will be presenting their own usual band of miscreants and scalawags, including Irish strongman Jason Leroy Lewis and a new performer, the Doll of Shangri-La, a petite beauty whose billing as “fetish artist” doesn’t entirely capture the power of her performance.
Unquestionably, the highlight of the evening will be Pinkie, the Princess of Pain herself, in an attempt to set a new world record for “heaviest weight lifted with both eye sockets (female)”. The current record stands at 33 pounds, but Pinkie, ever a fan of round numbers, will be attempting to lift no less than 40 pounds.
A new album from one of Chattanooga’s most popular artists, a ten-year anniversary of the revival of the sideshow and the importation of weird and wonderful talent from across the country means one thing: It’s time for all you people with the “Make Chattanooga Weird” stickers to put your money where your mouth is and head down to the Honest Pint on Thursday, June 25. Show starts at 9 p.m., advance tickets are on sale for $10 via the River City Rumpus Facebook page. Admission is $15 at the door.