Previously we introduced you to the excellent Canadian band The New Jacobin Club, reviewing and interviewing the band. Part of their stunning live shows is the performances of The Angry Teeth Freakshow, a collection of ladies taking performance art to its limit and complimenting the band’s great sounds with disturbing, frightening and unforgettable visuals and acts. The RingMaster Review had the pleasure to talk to Raunchy Rabies from the troupe and ask about The Angry Teeth.
Hello and welcome to The Ringmaster Review, thank you for talking with us.
Would you please introduce the members of The Angry Teeth?
I am Raunchy Rabies
(other performers that join Rabies on stage from time to time are Rima the Birdgirl, Firecrotch Jones, Poon Puncher and Mistress Nagini)
How long has the troupe been thrilling and shocking audiences?
I have been with this troupe for just under three years, but they were active before that.
The last question actually raises the next question of how do you describe The Angry Teeth yourselves? I have seen you listed as a side show, freak show but none feel completely right.
I think freakshow comes the closest, because we do have that old time circus feel, however we’ve updated it to include other aspects of stage performance. When someone asks what I do I just answer “Performance Artist cum Circus Freak.”
What were your inspirations leading you into this area of entertainment?
I’ve always wanted to be a performer, I love being on stage. However I can’t sing, I can’t dance, I can’t play any instruments, so shock entertainment felt like a natural next step for me. We have a lot of inspiration from other troupes like the Jim Rose circus, but I also have a lot of respect for more mainstream freaks, like the boys from Jackass.
Can you give examples of what people can expect at one of your shows?
Expect the unexpected. My whole goal in entertainment is to keep people guessing, and there’s no greater pleasure for me as a performer than seeing someone look shocked, appalled, and disgusted.
How easy with the content of your act is it to find willing venues to put on your shows?
Luckily our work with the NJC (New Jacobin Club) has opened up a much wider variety of public appearance options, but even before that we’ve had a lot of luck with word of mouth advertising. There are not a lot of groups like us out there, and when people hear about it, they want to see it live.
Certainly around the world you are known for your work and union with The New Jacobin Club as you just mentioned, but you have your own shows too?
Yes, paring up with the NJC was beneficial on both ends, but we had shows before the paring up, and still are available for private parties, and have interest in doing solo shows.
How did the link up with The New Jacobin Club come about?
Saskatoon is just not that big a place, so anyone who performs typically knows what else is going on in that area. NJC is a freaky band and we’re a freaky bunch of freaks. It all feels pretty natural to me.
How much discussion between you all and the band goes into creating the right visuals and tone for the right song? Does this take a fair bit of planning?
There’s always planning and a lot of practice that goes into our shows. A lot of things the Angry Teeth do are on the dangerous side, so doing those things on stage with a full band right there next to us makes things a bit trickier. Not only should the right acts go with the right music, but I also don’t want to accidentally re-arrange a band members face with a wide sledge-hammer blow.
There is usually a connection between the visuals and content of the songs surrounding them I believe?
We always try to at least work out a loose theme for every round of shows that we do with the band. It makes it better for the audience, but it also helps the performers know which roles we should each have and what attitude we want to portray.
Who makes the final decision on what goes into the shows with the band and your own or do you as individuals have sole control of your own contributions?
No one rules this union with an iron fist, we all have specialties and there’s a lot of brainstorming and compromising to make sure we get a show that everyone’s happy with.
In the drama of your show, its visual narrative, is there a suggested leader or Queen of The Angry Teeth?
I think that changes from show to show. We are multi-talented women, but we all have our own unique roles too and whoever has the stage personality that fits that particular show usually gets some leeway about what goes into it.
How easy is it to keep pushing your boundaries and to come up with new ideas and jaw dropping visuals?
Easy is a word you don’t get to use often in sideshow. You have to remember that we are not magicians, or illusionists, the things we do are exactly what they look like, and a lot of them are physically demanding, and downright painful. Some days you just go “aww fuck I don’t want to do this” and then you do it anyway.
A silly question but one that has come to mind as writing these others, what do you call your visuals? Tricks, stunts…?
I usually just refer to them as “acts” because anything else makes it sound less than it is, less real, and less shocking.
I can imagine with the performances you come up with accidents and injuries are unavoidable, what have been the worse ones to date?
We’ve all been burned, scarred, and stitched. I can’t pick one that I’d say is the worst. One of the most alarming for me is when I got Firecrotch Jones in a vein during a practice and we made a blood fountain, but we’ve all gotten our pelvises bashed with a sledge hammer on several occasions, so… you really can’t pick one.
At what point do you rein in your ideas and enthusiasm for an act because the risks are too one sided in a negative way?
Everything we do on stage we practice a billion times beforehand, to make sure we can do it without harming ourselves too seriously. However usually what we try to do is try it out on stage, get some reactions, and if the reaction isn’t equal to the effort we nix it.
What is life outside of The Angry Teeth for you all? Is there a life outside haha?
For myself life is very Jekyll and Hyde, by day I work in high end retail, I wear a business suit and a bun in my hair every day. I talk to my mom on the phone at least 5 times a week, and I love gardening. By night there’s nothing I want more than to replace the business suit with a costume and eat some glass for your entertainment.
Thank you so much for sparing time to chat with us.
And finally is there anyone in The New Jacobin Club brave enough to say no to or tell the ladies of The Angry Teeth what to do?
I don’t think it’s a matter of bravery. The Angry Teeth and the NJC have a very respectful and mutually rewarding relationship. Honesty is key and if they see us doing something stupid they’ll let us know. And vice versa.
Read The New Jacobin Interview @ http://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2012/02/06/the-new-jacobin-club-interview/