Erica Saben's passions have taken her near and far. She studied dance, political science, and Caribbean culture in Kingston, Jamaica, before returning to the United States to perform with several multicultural companies. A juggling gig in Philadelphia introduced her to two local circus experts who knew the director of Philadelphia School of Circus Arts. From this chance meeting blossomed a new chapter in her life: in addition to teaching her her big-top skills such as aerials and tightwire, they introduced her to Chinese acrobat Lin Junming, who would become her resident acrobatics coach when she founded Charm City Movement Arts.
Nestled between Canton and Brewer's Hill, the studio and performance space lets children and adults live the lives of professional circus performers without having to sneak into a tent disguised as a barrel of clown feed. Each instructor boasts experience in diverse movement backgrounds: Lin is also a member of the Fujian Acrobatics Troupe of China, and managing director Paco Fish has taken home awards in several Southern burlesque competitions. Other instructors draw from backgrounds in rock climbing, slacklining, acrobatics, and aerial work. Using this range of skills, they teach students the basics of Western and Chinese acrobatics, Broadway tap-dancing, modern dance, juggling, unicycling, and blends of clowning and burlesque. When not in class, staffers and students also hone their own chops as performers in seasonal dance and circus shows.
In recent years, The 8x10’s musical focus has returned to the name and vibe that it first debuted in 1983, serving up nightly live bands alongside a full bar of drinks and draft brews. The tap slings 16 ounces of frosty fermentables into beer glasses ($3.50–$6) and a backing track of bottled brews wets whistles ($4.50–$6; $8 for 22 oz. Fat Tire). Like a giraffe on stilts, drinks at The 8x10 are double-tall, so a goblet of Red Bull and vodka hosts an up-tempo duet of two shots ($8.50).
Even if they were not apprised beforehand, guests at Illusions Bar and Theater would quickly realize that they were in no ordinary watering hole when they noticed the straightjacket suspended above the small stage behind the bar. Far from the state's only psych ward with a liquor license, the venue is the brainchild of former clown and showbiz veteran Ken Horsman.
Typical evenings see patrons sipping on fine spirits while gaping at a show by Ken’s son, escape artist Spencer Horsman, as he wriggles his way free from increasingly secure restraints and dangerous situations, all while tickling ribs with playful banter. Other magicians regularly stop by to show off their illusions, wowing audiences and deepening the depression of real wizards who can't get anyone to believe in their powers.
The thespians and theater crew at Fells Point Corner Theatre have enchanted audiences with nonprofit productions of new and rarely seen plays for 25 years. Upcoming attractions include Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women, the 1994 Pulitzer Prize winner about three differently aged women who reflect on their lives with acerbic wit while scaling skyscrapers; and The Little Dog Laughed, a look at gossip and celebrity in the 21st century. Colorful characters populate Circle Mirror Transformation, a comedy detailing a motley crew’s attempt at bonding during a six-week acting class; Eugene O’Neill’s iconic play The Iceman Cometh explores universal social questions in the back room of a 1912 skid-row saloon. Though seating at the 85-seat Fells Point Corner Theatre is subject to availability, the small size of the theater allows for good sight lines from all seats.
• For $29, you get two general-admission tickets to see the Edwin McCain Band (up to a $50 value) and two domestic drafts or well drinks (up to a $12 value) on Wednesday, September 7 (up to a $62 total value). • For $26, you get two general-admission tickets to see Slick Rick (up to a $44 value) and two domestic drafts or well drinks (up to a $12 value) on Saturday, September 10 (up to a $56 total value). • For $34, you get two general-admission tickets to see Stryper (up to a $60 value) and two domestic drafts or well drinks (up to a $12 value) on Tuesday, September 20 (up to a $72 total value). • For $19, you get two general-admission tickets to see Dio Disciples (a $30 value) and two domestic drafts or well drinks (up to a $12 value) on Sunday, September 25 (up to a $42 total value) • For 19, you get two general-admission tickets to see Southern Culture on the Skids (a $30 value) and two domestic drafts or well drinks (up to a $12 value) on Thursday, October 13 (up to a $42 total value).
Admission for all three games is included in the value of this Groupon. The ball-tossing battle begins with the number-seven-ranked Terps taking on the preseason's top-rated team, Duke, for a rousing field-romp at 11 a.m. Next, watch as Princeton's rising stars Jack McBride and Chad Wiedmaier go up against Johns Hopkins at 1:30 p.m. The day concludes with Notre Dame versus Loyola at 4 p.m. Take in all the action from club-level seats.