Mediums: poetry, performance art, music, live/theatrical performance, piano, voice
Dreambaby is my witch cabaret alter ego, as well as the quintessence of my interdisciplinary work as it combines poetry, storytelling, vocal performance, piano, and ritual for a unique and cathartic experience. Typical Dreambaby sets include original poems and a blend of original and covered music, often stepping into the realm of performance art through rituals that include audience participation. I also host and MC shows such as my 2019 Winter Solstice Tarot Ball and Arts Market at Rituals and numerous "Dreambaby Cabarets" like Nostos: a Dreambaby Cabaret at The Peale Center. Dreambaby operates firmly in the aesthetics of camp and the occult, drawing inspiration from artists like Diamanda Galas to bring spooky, operatic music and phantasmagoric writing/incantation to the ears of audiences everywhere. I've always described Dreambaby as more of a performance art project that uses music, ritual, and spoken word poetry as a storytelling medium—this is especially true in the sense that Dreambaby isn't a "music" project as heavily aestheticized covers of other artists' work comprise about 80% of the music I perform, making even the music itself more an act of theatrical mimesis than musical composition. Although I write the arrangements themselves, I am largely interspersing my own spoken word poetry and music with my own theatrical, witchy interpretations of music written by other artists; thus, the performance itself becomes the main artistic throughline of the work, collaging my own original work with mimesis. Dreambaby is meant to be experienced as live performance, and even studio recordings are complementary/secondary to that experience.
Through my Dreambaby Cabaret experiences, I was one of Baltimore's early adopters of the "Zoom show" format, embracing the medium to create Diadem: a Dreambaby Cabaret as early as April 2020, Mayfair: a Dreambaby Cabaret in May of the same year, and Spells & Songs for the Winter Solstice in December—these shows brought in queer indie icons from across the country like Vinsantos (New Orleans), Jeremy Mikush (LA and San Francisco), and moon baby (Philadelphia) alongside of performances by current or former Baltimore residents like Ginger Witch, Talbolt Johnson, Amorous Ebony, Christine Ferrera, and Olga Comedy. Through Zoom, Dreambaby also co-hosted Apartscape 2020, guest featured for Mobtown Ballroom's Mobtown Live (my performance starts around 58 minutes), and featured music and poetry at the online Mushroom City Arts Festival. This year, thanks to warm weather and the scientific wonder of vaccination, Dreambaby was able to return to the stage for Cicadarama at Peabody Heights and join other shows like Laure Drogoul's popup 14 KT Cabaret shows at Maryland Art Place.
As a witchy host, producer, musician, and performer born at the 2013 Transmodern Festival, Dreambaby has enchanted stages from Baltimore venues like Metro Gallery and The Crown to Washington DC (The Black Cat & Bier Baron Tavern), New Orleans (Siberia & The All Ways Lounge), and even Spain (La Xata La Rifa 2013). Dreambaby has also been featured at festivals like Electric Halloween (rural PA) and The Americana Burlesque and Sideshow Festival (Asheville).