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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Edwardian Ball 2012: "The Iron Tonic" this weekend

It's the week of the Edwardian Ball in San Francisco, which means that there will be lots of costumed people surrounding this Edward Gorey-inspired, can't miss event.

The Edwardian Ball itself takes place this Friday and Saturday, January 20 and 21, at the Regency Center in San Francisco, which is located at 1300 Van Ness Avenue at Sutter (map). It's once again presented by Paradox Media and Vau de Vire. Tickets may be purchased in-person at the stores listed at, and they may be purchased online at Tickets may also be purchased (if available) at the door for a few dollars more. Please note that the Los Angeles date for the Edwardian Ball has been postponed. The new date (probably in March) will be announced soon.


On Friday, it's The Edwardian World's Faire, which is a night of music, theatrics, circus, fashion, gaming, and Edwardian-tinged rock n’ roll. It's touch less formal than Saturday's Ball, with steam-powered sculptures, displays, rides, and games that are one-night-only. Kingfish of the Hubba Hubba Revue will be host, and there will be the debut of the "Museum of Wonders." Performers will include Edwardian disc jockey Delachaux, Sour Mash Hug Band, Flynn Creek Circus, Vau de Vire Society, DJ Fact.50, and our now-famous Vendor Bazaar & Piano Saloon featuring the John Brothers Piano Company! Tickets for the World's Faire range from $29.00 for general admission to $75.00 for VIP Balcony, and may be purchased online at The Faire starts at 8:00 p.m., and is scheduled to last until 2:00 a.m.

Saturday's Edwardian Ball will be preceded in the afternoon by the free Vendor Bazaar daytime shopping, and an afternoon tea from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. with "chap hop" artist from the United Kingdom, Professor Elemental. Tickets for the afternoon tea are $30.00, and available online at Performers during the Ball are scheduled to include "Belle of the Ball" Jill Tracy, The Fossettes, Jef Valentine, DJs Miz Margo and Delachaux, and more. Plus, Ball founders Rosin Coven and Vau de Vire Society will bring Gorey's "The Iron Tonic" to life with original music, choreography, narration, and circus acts. Tickets for the Edwardian Ball range from $39.00 for general admission to $85.00 for VIP Balcony, and may be purchased online at The Ball opens at 8:00 p.m., and is scheduled to end at 2 a.m.

Although it's called the Edwardian Ball, and there are opportunities to dance, there's enough going on that even if you don't dance, there's always something to do. Whether it's shopping in the Vendor Bazaar, looking at the various displays that are set up around the Regency Center, watching and listening to the performances, chatting with the person wearing the fishbowl with live goldfish, or gazing in wonder at the costumes of your fellow attendees, it's an event that is sure to thrill.

What to wear? Although it is called the Edwardian Ball, your choices are not necessarily limited to the Edwardian Era. After all, it's inspired by Edward Gorey, so you can dress up as a Gorey character. Or you can sport the safari look like Professor Elemental. Dressing like a character in a Sherlock Holmes story is another idea. The event is a mashup of various influences, including goth, steampunk, and others, so it's hard to go wrong. It's probably best not to attend in a t-shirt and jeans, although a few people do. If you're really concerned, you can scan through the picture galleries at Something nice and formal for a night out on the town would work, too. Last year's 7x7 Magazine had an article with a good suggestion for women.

Also, see last year's "Newbie Guide" for more about attending the Edwardian Ball. Lastly, it's usually a good idea to get there at or before 8:00 for the Faire and Ball to beat the crowds getting in. And if you're hungry, there are restaurants and other establishments around the Regency Center.
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