For every upcoming month, I’ll be spotlighting various steampunk events across the US and around the world (we’re a social bunch!) with the help of the Airship Ambassador and the occasional guest from the steampunk community. For February, witness a musical re-telling of the Opium Wars, attend a gala to sponsor the Madison Ballet, join the post-apoc wasteland at a retrofuturistic gaming convention, and much more…
The Airship Ambassador recommends:
Cocktails at the Centre of the Earth, Annex Theatre, Seattle, WA — Jan 26 - Feb 25, 2012
Cocktails at the Centre of the Earth, a steampunk extravaganza of words, wit and wonder! Join an unlikely group of drinking buddies as they share secrets, sonnets, and sloe gin, in watering holes that range from the sea to the sky to the center of the earth. Written & directed by Simon Astor, Annex Theatre, Seattle, WA. Say, the Ambassador: “While I don’t go into the city too often, this will be one event that looks worth venturing in for.”
2nd Retrofuturists’ Ball: Back to the Retrofuture! — Feb 4, 2012 — Preston Masonic Hall, Preston, Lancashire, UK
Looking overseas, who wouldn’t like another reason to get all dressed up? According to their website: “After the success of the first Retrofuturists’ Ball, we proudly and boldly go Back To The Retrofuture! Featuring the frankly legendary Professor Elemental and the frankly dubious Professor Bevel, we aim to host the foremost Steampunk Mad Science shindig in Lancashire!”
Vintage Circus Picnic in The Garden – Feb 26, 2012, Steampunk SA, The Garden of Unearthly Delights, Adelaide, Australia
In the Land Down Under, a picnic is a great way to be social in their summer season, especially while it’s the tale end of winter for those of us in the northern hemisphere. Let’s keep an eye out for pictures!
TempleCon - Feb 3-5, 2012, Warwick, RI
Now in its 7th year, this retrofuturistic gaming convention will have a “post-apocalypse” theme this year, “From the clean lines of the iconic vault suits of Raygun Gothic inspired Fallout, to the studded leather-and-steel chic look of Mad Max and other assorted post-nuclear fiction, we want to see you here looking like you just survived the end of the world, whatever that world may be.” Featured guests include the band Psyche Corporation, performers The Wandering Legion of the Thomas Tew, game developer Jason Soles, and author CJ Henderson.
Anachrocon — Feb 24-26, 2012, Atlanta, GA
This alternate history convention is small but always packed full of worthy guests and performers. This year boasts 16 musical guests (including The Extraordinary Contraptions, Eli August, Dr. Q, Frenchy and the Punk,Carnival Epsilon, The Vauxhall Garden Variety Players), author O.M. Grey, maker Thomas Willeford of Brute Force Leather, and artist Mark Helwig.
Bradford Museums & Galleries Steampunk Exhibit – Now until May 7th, 2012, Bradford, UK
“Incorporating a futuristic Victorian perspective on fashion, culture and technology, Steampunk as a genre originated in the 1980s. Inspired and influenced by 19th Century science fiction, Steampunk is set in a world where steam power is paramount. The exhibition will display costumes, objects, artwork and memorabilia loaned by local Steampunk enthusiasts. These will sit alongside Bradford Museums & Galleries permanent collections of late19th and early 20th century steam powered technology.”
Prometheus Bound – February 4th, 2012 – Jubilee Hotel, Fortitude Valley, QLD, Australia
Prometheus Bound’s 4th anniversary celebration, featuring Voltaire all the way from NYC. The premier Brisbane Steampunk nightclub; PB features stalls, entertainments, music and drinks.
Victorian Valentine Making – Feb 4, 2012 – Henry Plant Museum, Tampa, FL
Hosted by the Tampa Bay Steampunk Society: “Join the TBSS as they make Victorian Valentines at the Plant Museum, then visit the annual exhibit of genuine Victorian Valentines!” More info on Facebook.
Steampunk Night @ Alamo Drafthouse Park North – Feb 9, 2012 – San Antonio, TX. The Held every second Thursday of the month: “Join us, Steampunk or not, for this magical evening of wonder and bedazzlement which we host every second Thursday of the every month with a new Steampunk visual experience! With Steampunks from all over the Texas community showing up (dressing up encouraged!) and the film itself, it would almost be an absolute crime to miss out on what promises to be an amazing evening! This month’s film is Wild, Wild West.”
Steam Up, A night of magic, songs and burlesque – Feb 10, 2012 – Melbourne, Australia.
“Don your frocks and vest, polish your pocket watch and dust off those gears. It’s time to steam up Melbourne - steampunk style. A night of magic, songs and burlesque, perhaps even an explosion or two as we try to harness all that steam has to offer. So let us take you to the past that never was, enchant you, amuse you and seduce you.” Includes burlesque performers Kerryx and Madame Natalia, magician Richard Vegas and folk singer Martin Pearson.
Madison Children’s Museum: Adult Swim - Steampunk Cabaret – Feb 10, 2012 –Madison Children’s Museum, Madison, WI.
Adult Swim is a bimonthly fundraiser that honors the public pool tradition of kicking the kids out so adults can have the space to themselves. Activities will include cabaret music by local contemporary chamber ensemble New Music Everywhere (aka New MUSE), immersion actors from TeslaCon, jewelry making, fortune telling and tarot card reading, a costume contest, and more.
AetherCon! 2012; The Steampunk Convention – Feb 11, 2012 – The Parnell Trust Jubilee Building Hall, Parnell, Auckland, New Zealand
A one-day steampunk con event. There will be lots of folks contributing displays, stalls of items for sale, and related activities as we think of them! More information can be found on their Facebook.
Steampunk Ottawa Meet-Up at the Canadian Museum of Nature Feb 16, 2012, Canadian Museum of Nature, Ottawa, ON
“We return once more to complete our safari through the wild halls of this most esteemed establishment.”
“Traders,” presented by Anna Chen - Feb 16, 2012 - National Maritime Museum, Sammy Ofer Wing, Greenwich, UK
To steampunks in the UK, play heed to this production of “Traders”, presented by British-Chinese comedian Anna Chen, which is described as “The Steampunk Opium Wars extravaganza with songs poetry and music...Historical characters will be slugging it out in verse to persuade us of the pros and cons of waging war to push drugs.” Tickets are free but book in advance (Tel: 020 8312 6608).
The First Surrey Steampunk Convivial Feb 25, 2012 Worcester Park, North Cheam, New Malden, The Avenue, Surrey, UK
The first Surrey Steampunk Convivial is a gathering that starts with a history walk of the road that HG Wells lived in when he wrote the Time Machine (Worcester Park) and continues with a full day programming and entertainment including steampunk snail racing, tea dueling, and lots of live music and vending.
TimelessTea Party (Good-Bye Parasol Protectorate) – Feb 16, 2012 – Francisco, CA
Gail Carriger hosts a book launch party for the last book in her Parasol Proectorate series, TIMELESS. Tea party, reading, and book signing with Gail Carriger. $20 at the door gets you Timeless signed & dedicated, tea & nibbles, cocktails for sale (all moneys not used to cover costs will go to Variety Children’s Charity).
Steampunk Gala – Feb 26, 2012 - Madison, WI
In celebration of Madison Ballet’s 30th Anniversary, they are holding a steampunk-themed gala: “an over-the top evening with the risk of decadence... enjoy specialty cocktails, a lavish dinner and irresistible live music that lead to dancing with abandon.”