One more time, for the cheap seats in the back!
David Williams’ inaugural Geek Fair was so popular last year, he’s decided to bring it back. And this time, he’s brought friends – old and new.
Geek Fair (part deux!) will be held at Centenary this Saturday, April 9, and will feature vendors and cosplayers from last year’s Geek Fair plus a few new faces.
Several of those new faces will come from the Caddo Magnet Players. Under the tutelage of Patti Reeves, 15 students and 4 adults will be traveling all the way to Edinburgh’s famed Fringe Festival to present “a classic with a twist: William Shakespeare’s A Mid-Summer Night’s Dream.” Except this dream is set in Gotham!
“We were very excited when we realized we could bring this to Geek Fair,” said Reeves. “What could be more geeky than setting a Shakespearean play in the city of Gotham? We hope our previews of scenes at Geek Fair will encourage folks to come see the show in its entirety that night!” The full play will be performed as a “Fund the Fringe” production that night at Caddo Magnet. (Tickets are $10.)
David Williams can’t think of a more appropriate collaboration for the fair. “We’ve made Shakespeare scary and seemingly irrelevant for everyone but literature enthusiasts,” he comments. “Put Batman into it, and all of a sudden people are paying attention. Shakespeare was for the masses, that was his intent. This is a way to pull people back into the arts – and that’s exactly what Geek Fair is all about!”
Cementing that goal is the new collaboration with Co-Creative, Shreveport-Bossier’s burgeoning collection of young artists and musicians who aspire to the same dream. Co-Creative artists will both be performing as well as selling original work as part of the fair. Co-founder Caitlin Lindsay notes, “I’m excited to have the opportunity to be involved with an event that brings so many creative people together! The Geek Fair group is like a family, and we are happy to be a part of it.”
Speaking of family, just what has happened to the Geek Fair family since its inception in December of 2015?
Just ask Star Williams, who was a big part of her husband’s inspiration in creating the makers’ fair. “Twenty years ago, to pursue my dream, I would have had to go to New York or someplace similar to share my art. With the advent of technology, I can scan and send my print to hundreds of people. But the Geek Fair is what helped me get my feet wet and see people respond to my art in person. Now I’m constantly busy with commissions!”
All according to Williams’ not-so-evil plan. “It’s exciting when women like my wife and Brooke [Estrada] and Amber [ Johnson] are able to use the technology of the internet and the experience of a makers’ fair to promote their passions and art.” He references those women specifically because their successes at the Geek Fair have helped them branch out – already! – to cons and art fests in Arkansas and Texas. “I call them my galactic gals,” Williams beams proudly.
“Everytime I do an actual physical event, there’s a big push online,” notes Star, owner of Starrymite creations. “They really go hand in hand.”
Estrada, owner of Hello Sweetie, and original Geek Fair participant, concurs. “My experience with the Geek Fair has been nothing but exceptional. Being new to the area, we have felt welcomed with open arms and have been overwhelmed with how much the area has allowed our business to thrive.”
Not too shabby, Shreveport! The upcoming fair will also feature new cosplayers as well as original voice actors from Dragonball-Z. The event will boast 63 booths in addition to the aforementioned Co-Creative concert series and the Historically European Martial Arts society, showcasing Scottish broadsword fighting.
“It’s great to see a community so thirsty for geek culture…it’s fun, family-friendly, and you’re supporting local art while making new friends. I don’t know why anyone wouldn’t want to go!” chimes in Estrada, directly contradicting the too-cool-for-school notion that “there’s nothing to do in Shreveport.”
“Look at Deadpool and Star Wars, Harry Potter,” concludes David Williams. “The Harry Potter books were considered geek but one of the best selling series of the last 20 years. It’s not the stereotypical kids hiding out in the basement with comic books anymore. Geek culture really is everyone.”
Accio ticket to the Geek Fair!
The Geek Fair will be held at Centenary College Fitness Center from 10a-6pm on April 9. For more information, please visit: sbgeekfair.com. Tickets are $5 and may be purchased at the door.
A Midsummer Night’s Dream in Gotham will be performed by the Caddo Magnet Players at the Caddo Magnet Performing Arts Center at 7pm on April 9. Tickets are $10 and may be purchased at the door.