5 Questions with: The Great Mr. Swindle’s Traveling Peculiarium and Drink-Ory co-producer Allison Blei


 The Great Mr. Swindle’s Traveling Peculiarium and Drink-Ory is coming to Boca Raton this month. What can attendees expect to see if they attend?

They can expect an evening of amazement, thrill and laughter! Guest will experience a 90 minute show under a spectacular tent featuring acrobats, aerialist and comedians. Our artists come from all over the world and were hand selected, which means that they are the best of the best! The Drink-Ory Garden opens one hour prior to showtime which serves beer, wine, cocktails, snacks and dishes prepared by Chef Zil Wolfgang. The artist will also mingle with guests in the Drink-Ory Garden prior to the show, so it is fun to arrive early.

 How did you get into producing this show and coming up with the concept? Who is your favorite character?

Well, I started as a performer in 2007. I traveled performing and through all my travels, I have experienced many different things, seen so many shows and was able to compile knowledge of what works and what doesn’t work. But the humorous conversations shared with my partner/husband brought the concept to life. It is a barnumesque inspired show. My favorite character is Mr. B.S. Swindler! He is the impresario who traveled the world collecting all of the bizarre and unusual characters.

 We heard you went from working as a financial analyst in Boca Raton before running away and actually joining the circus. How did that happen?

Well, I went to school at FSU where I earned a degree in Finance but where I also joined the Collegiate Circus as a hobby. I was fortunate to be able to both earn a finance degree and pick up the art of live entertainment. After college I followed my original goal and became a financial analyst, but realized something was missing. Looking for a change, I went to a flying trapeze audition and got the job! That was the beginning of a wonderful journey in live entertainment and bringing joy to audiences.

 The show will take place under a new “Odd-itorium in the Round.” Tell us about the tent and what the viewing experience is like.

The tent is brand new and was made by the premier tent makers in the world! It was custom made and recently shipped here from Italy. The colors, the Sidewalls, the size, everything about it is a bit unusual. It may be the worlds smallest big top! We also have a new and upgraded seating arrangement. Every row is raised and every seat is an individual seat with cushions.

 You produce the show with your husband, Ivan Espana, What is it like working with your spouse?

It is actually great and I wouldn’t change it! For me, there is no doubt that working with your spouse is a learned art, but once you figure it out, the rewards are priceless.