Eli August and the Abandoned Buildings

Baltimore-Philadelphia-New York City

The music of Eli August is akin to the waters of a great river. It’s always moving and pushing forward, whether through percussive guitar and banjo, or the urgency of delicately crafted lyrics; the music never looks back.


The Dark Americana music is, at its roots, devoted to romantics and those who reflect upon their days with a certain longing for the past. Eli is often backed by an ever changing East Coast collective called The Abandoned Buildings, who bring rich and earthy orchestrations to the settings imagined in August’s songwriting, from the deep undulations of the ocean, to the quiet mystery of the forest and the openness of the dry and dusty road.


Whether solo, or along with the Abandoned Buildings, Eli will have you tapping your foot, singing along and reminiscing of your own long ago journeys.





This Way to the Egress

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

A band of musical miscreants from all walks of life, EGRESS is a tapestry of worldly influences and an alchemy of sounds modern and past, familiar and forgotten.


If Tom Waits and Patti Smith made a musical lovechild it might sound a little like EGRESS. Whether you know them as the “dance band to ring in the end of the world with” or by their “raise your spirit, raise a glass and drop a beat” attitude, EGRESS will leave their mark on you as the six-person troupe cascades onto the stage in an explosion of sound and sight. EGRESS is equal parts unruly vaudeville, ebullient world-beat and three ring circus all the while playing an amalgamation of worldly genres catapulting their audience through time and space with unexpected shifts of styles, tempos and time signatures.


EGRESS is Taylor Galassi (lead vocals, accordion, piano); Sarah Shown (vocals, piano, violin); John Wentz  (tuba, backup vocals); Joe Lynch (trombone, backup vocals); Jaclyn Kidd (guitar, banjo) and Nick Pecca (drums and percussion). Hailing from a wide variety of musical backgrounds with a diverse array of influences, EGRESS crafts intricately arranged audible cocktails which will be sure to make you move. Their rambunctious stage show generates enough energy to light up a small city while their genre-bending miscellany leaves the audience wondering what will happen next. Beware: EGRESS’ infectious energy is contagious. After EGRESS you might never be the same, but you will be coming back for more.






Miss Jubilee and the Humdingers

St. Louis, Missouri

On this, their maiden voyage at the Big River Steampunk Festival, Miss Jubilee has been entertaining audiences around St. Louis and beyond since the beginning of 2007 with their exciting blend of authentic Hot Jazz, Swing, Rhythm & Blues and R’n’R spanning the 1920’s-1950’s. Fronted by a high energy female vocalist and backed up by a swingin’ horn-fueled rhythm section, Miss Jubilee is a favorite among Swing Dancers and fans of all ages who enjoy uplifting and energetic music!

Miss Jubilee will appear at the Time

Traveler's Ball aboard the Mark Twain Riverboat, don't miss it!




You’ve seen him on “Pawn Stars”, meet him in person at Big River! Billed as “The inimitable Renaissance Man”, Doc is a veteran film, stage and TV personality, dancer, singer, college professor, occultist, champion tea dueler – a multilayered entertainer popular throughout the Steampunk culture. He is the founder of The Steampunk Imaginarium, a museum in Las Vegas, and host of the Steamathon Convention. Look for Doc Phineas all around the Steampunk Festival, there’s no telling where he may turn up!




Dr. Phineas T. Kastle

Las Vegas, Nevada

Thomas has been at the forefront of the steampunk movement since the 1980s. His custom prop and costume workshop, formerly known as Brute Force Leather and Fallen Angel Fashions, first started making corsets and costume pieces back in 1996, "...because there was so much badly-made, mass-produced rubbish out there," Thomas says. "We wanted to show the world that craftsmanship was still alive."


Thomas continues, "Supporting American industries and workers is very important to us. All of our materials, including fabric, metal, leather, and acrylic are made in the United States or imported from Sheffield, England. We do not outsource any of our labor to other countries. Even the fabric is milled in Pennsylvania. "


In 2015, Thomas was one of the four experts on the GSN show "Steampunk'd" and continues to be a leading authority of all things Steampunk, featured in festivals and conventions throughout the world.


Stop by and meet Thomas at his lair on Main Street or at one of the many panels and seminars he'll be hosting at Big River Steampunk Festival. Also, be sure to check out Thomas Willeford's books "Steampunk Gear, Gadgets, and Gizmos" and "The Steampunk Adventurer's Guide" (McGraw-Hill), the best-selling steampunk how-to books on the market.





Thomas Dean Willeford

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

Sammy Tramp

Chicago, Illinois

Sammy Tramp is a charming, lovable, scamp of a tramp, a throwback to the days of Chaplin and Keaton, and the good ol’ days of Vaudeville and Music Hall. Sammy is a high energy performance artist who has headlined and entertained in burlesque festivals, vaudeville shows, street/music festivals, silent film events, concerts, and cabarets. She was a founding member of Chicago's Silent Theatre company, and is also the creator and artistic director of the Beggar’s Carnivale, The Pocket Music Hall, and The Traveling Flicker Factory. Sammy can be seen in our 'Steam'feld Follies as well as in several seminars; she is also the director and emcee of the Big River Steampunk Festival’s Burley-Que.




Darling Violet

Chicago, Illinois

Darling Violet is originally from Pennsylvania but now makes her home in Chicago, Illinois. A graduate of the New England Center for Circus Arts and member of the Kansas City Society of Burlesque, she now performs as a singer, dancer, aerialist, circus performer and burlesque dancer throughout the United States. Violet, back by popular demand, will perform in the 'Steam'feld Follies and The Burley-Que at the 2017 Big River Steampunk Festival.



Little Beard and the ScallyWags

Wichita, Kansas

Beard and the Wags are back by popular demand for their fourth consecutive year at the Big River Steampunk Festival! The Scally Wags Pirate Comedy Show is one of the longest running Pirate acts in the U.S., performing at Ren Faires and Steampunk conventions around the country. These scoundrels of the seas will delight you throughout the Festival with their antics on stage, sword fighting, improv comedy and more. Beard will again emcee the festivities on the Main Street Stage, and he and the Wags will perform in the 'Steam'feld Follies and The Burley-Que at Big River. You can also buy them a beer pretty much any night at Finn's, their preferred hangout while in Hannibal for Big River.

Amy Wilder

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

Amy Wilder is an accomplished model who specializes in Steampunk, Fantasy, Art and Cosplay. Amy discovered the Steampunk scene at DragonCon in 2010, and she is now one of the top Steampunk models in the U.S., appearing in publications such as Obscurae, Surreal Beauty, and Clockwork, as well as reaching almost iconic status in her work with Brute Force Studios.


Amy has achieved success in the world of mainstream modeling as well, most recently working with the Black Tape Project. See Amy in The Burley-Que at the Big River Steampunk Festival as well as with Thomas Willeford for seminars and panels with Brute Force.


John "Grizzy" Grzywacz

Chicago, Illinois

“Grizzy” has been recognized by OSHA’s National Office in Washington D.C. as both a National Electrical Code (NEC®) historian as well as “the best electrical safety trainer in the country.”  He has been OSHA’s electrical safety “go-to guy” and has been instrumental in shaping and interpreting OSHA policy and regulations for several decades. Grizzy has trained OSHA compliance officers, appeared as OSHA’s electrical expert, and guided literally hundreds of electrical fatality investigations. His electrical expertise has not only shaped OSHA policy but also the OSHA Electrical Standards.


Grizzy has a passion for electricity. He has has spent decades collecting rare electrical artifacts that he now is proud to exhibit and demonstrate in spectacular high voltage keynote presentations at major conventions. His audiences enjoy a unique opportunity to actually see a “slice of history” -- in fact, his events have been characterized by attendees: “It’s like watching the History Channel, only live!”


Be sure to catch Grizzy as Professor Sparks in "Dr. Frankenstein's Laboratory", performed at Bluff City Theater, 212 Broadway during the Big River Steampunk Festival.



Airship Isabella

New Orleans, Louisiana

The Airship Isabella is a mercenary ship for hire. Through the use of steam powered generators, augmented by a mysterious essence known only as Aether, the crew travels from dimension to dimension, from time to time, completing jobs, causing a ruckus, and ”collecting” goods from each individual world. The crew consists of many a rag-tag personality, but together they make a family.


On the flip side of the story, ASI is a group of artists, performers, and visionaries who have bound together to create characters who explore the boundaries of the Steampunk community and a menagerie of worlds to put them in. On their agenda: to create art for others to enjoy as much as themselves, to share their knowledge with those who find it of interest, to encourage people who would otherwise find themselves incapable of creating something wonderful to put their worries aside and realize that - with the right knowledge and tools - they can do it too!


Their 2015 custom work included leather accessories, costuming and props for AMC’s Into the Badlands and Frame 29 Film’s short Aether: Prologue, leather accessories for the Skrillex video, Red Lips, Sony Playstation Network’s Powers, CMT’s Still the King, and the feature film, Don’t Kill It, and leather armor for an advertising campaign for Tandy Leather.


Visit Airship Isabella in their special Airship Docking Bay on Main Street, enjoy learning their secrets and tips during seminars and workshops, and look for them in the audience of many of the various shows and events throughout Big River.


Crazy Boy Coy

Kansas City, Missouri

"Crazy Boy" Coy Espinoza bills himself as "a professional idiot". "My job consists of doing outrageous things and telling jokes while doing them. I make people laugh, and it makes me happy." Coy has been entertaining audiences for years at Ren Faires and Steampunk conventions with his hilarious, and amazing, acts of physical comedy, juggling, contortion, balancing, and overall clowing.  You can experience the joy that is Crazy Boy Coy on the Main Street Stage, the 'Steam'feld Follies, and the Burley-Que during the Big River Steampunk Festival.


Sanjula Vamana

Chicago, Illinois



The Burley-Que at Big River Steampunk Festival would simply not be the same without the incomparable Sanjula!  A name earned by years of dissertatious isolation and the most unparalleled of all human suffering. Watch as he seamlessly binds the edges of almost certain death and human wonderment into a quilt of perplexing paraphilias guaranteed to warm you to the very core. He is the one, the only SANJULA "The Sultan of Suffering" VAMANA! Often imitated, never duplicated! No gaffs, no gimmicks, no doubt! Sanjula will also appear in the 'Steam'feld Follies and on the Main Street Stage at Big River.



Judas and Magnolia

St. Louis, Missouri

Dr. Judas Lynch and Ms. Magnolia Strange have been working together for years traveling the world and creating magic and wonder for all ages.

Dr. Lynch is a character of Stewart Minor which started in the St. Louis cabaret scene and is inspired by the likes of Charlie Chaplan, Buster Keaton, Harry Houdini, and The Amazing Randy. Stewart has studied with the Chicago Physical Theater, Circus Harmony, and The Celebration Barn Theater.


Ms. Magnolia Strange is a character of Ashleigh Lynne Packard, which started her performance career by performing escapology among other magicians in the St. Louis area, and now works alongside Dr. Judas Lynch. Magnolia also does solo performance in hoop, modeling, and lyra.


Look for Judas and Magnolia performing their comically daring feats of strength, endurance and escapism on the Main Street Stage and in the 'Steam'feld Follies at Big River.



Eva la Feva is a nationally touring burlesque and belly dance performer/producer that has been delighting audiences for over a decade with her fluid, stylized dance technique base and her emotive and theatrical approach to burlesque. See Eva perform in the 'Steam'feld Follies and The Burley-Que at the Big River Steampunk Festival.

Eva La Feva

Chicago, Illinois

Making her debut at the Big River Steampunk Festival, Sio is part of the Sammy Tramp's troupe coming from Chicago to entertain the Steampunk crowd at Big River.  Sio is a popular burlesque performer in Chicagoland, appearing in such prestigious cabarets as Unbridled, No-Tell Cabaret, House of Blues, Uptown Underground and many others. See Sio perform in The Burley-Que at the Big River Steampunk Festival.

Sio Bast

Chicago, Illinois

Children of Proteus

Wichita,  Kansas

Cosplayers, Comic book authors, Make up artists and so much more., these folks seem to do it all. Their cosplay is predominantly based on their own original characters within the worlds of steampunk and mermaid folklore. A favorite whenever they appear at Steampunk and anime conventions, they have been active in the cosplay community since 2014 and continue to push the boundaries of both steampunk and cosplay! Look for their special seminar/workshops and visit their Cosplay booth on Main Street during the Big River Steampunk Festival.

The Saint Louis Mystery Company has been performing murder mysteries since 1992 nationwide from Chicago to Salt Lake City.

With “The Great Airship Adventure” at Planters Barn Theater, the group goes all out to bring the Steampunk experience to the audience members. Costumes are encouraged (but not required) for this event as the actors will be in costume. Audience members will find themselves given a character for the event and will then be rubbing elbows with adventurers, scientists and all manner of Victorian characters.




Saint Louis Mystery Company

St. Louis, Missouri

Melinda Kaye

Springfield, Illinois

A college professor in music and voice, Melinda Kaye will be fascinating audiences with her mastery of the Hurdy Gurdy, a crank-driven string instrument that can  produce the volume of several instruments at once - a thousand-year old device that feels as though it was invented in a steampunk world! Look for her on the Main Street Stage and in the 'Steam'feld Follies at Big River!




Prof. Jefferson Parker

Wichita, Kansas

Lydia Gentry

Cape Girardeau, Missouri

Lydia Gentry, aka Violin Dragoness, is making her debut at the Big River Steampunk Festival this year. Lydia is a senior at Cape Central High School in Cape Girardeau, Missouri. Using a backing track and live looping techniques, Lydia plays violin covers of pop, rock, Celtic and  Irish folk songs -- think a young Lindsey Stirling or Unwoman! Lydia will be performing in 'Steam'feld Follies and on the Main Street Stage.



Professor Parker was the Dance Master of The Entre' Nous Club Victorian Dancers at Old Cowtown Museum for 18 years. He teaches and performs the Waltz, Quadrilles, Contras and other single couple dances with his lovely wife, Mrs. Maddy Parker. The Professor is also known to do demos of the Pennyfarthing Bicycle and give rides to kids and some adults during the Big River Steampunk Festival.



Big River Steampunk Festival

is Presented By:

Hannibal History Museum Foundation

200 N. Main Street

Hannibal, MO 63401

(573) 248-1819


a 501(c)(3) Missouri non-profit corporation

Federal ID (EIN): 46-4772316

IRS DLN# 17053062337044

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