About Mab & Jal A Drum

Broken Glass Dinner Table - Photo credit: Stereo Vision Photography

Put a little “SIDE” in your SHOW!

Mab just Mab is a nationally touring sideshow performer who combines theatre, music, movement, comedy to bring you Classic sideshow, with a taste of vaudeville, covered in comedy, seasoned with ukulele.

Winner of the 2012 Americana Burlesque & Sideshow Festival’s Artist of the Year

Member of the award winning Cheeky Monkey Sideshow

Winner (with the Cheeky Monkey Sideshow) of the Circus Historical Society’s Candlelight Award – given for keeping the sideshow tradition alive,

World Record holder for Blockhead – part of the mass blockhead at the 2010 Sideshow Gathering in Wilkes-Barre PA

Co-Founder and Assistant Director of the nationally touring Accidental Circus, 11 years running

Founder of DCVariety Social Aide Society – an organization which offers emergency aid to uninsured variety artists in the DC area.

Mab Just Mab, DC’s Own Sideshow Girl, combines artistry and pain to create hilarious & compelling entertainment. A glasswalker and blockhead, escape artist and ukulele fanatic, she is a tenured freak at DC’s notorious sideshow venue & museum, The Palace of Wonders. Mab has as been featured in several documentaries and books on the sideshow revival, and performs solo, with The Accidental Circus, and as a pillar of the Cheeky Monkey Sideshow.

Would you like to know a bit more about Mab?

  • Currently, Mab can be found monkeying around with the rest of the Cheeky Monkey Sideshow, which happens to also be DC’s longest running theatrical sideshow.
  • Mab believes that every single person has superpowers.
  • One of Mab’s super powers is the ability to find the shortest lane in at a toll booth. The other is the ability to walk on broken glass and hammer spikes into her face.
  • Mab is a freak. You probably shouldn’t try that at home.

In the realm of the extraordinary, one artist stands out.  Mab has performed all over this country, touring fairs, festivals, and alleyways across the US.  She boasts a performing career that has spanned over 18 years.  She has worked with artists and dancers not only as a musician and performer, but as someone who enables others to realize their dreams of performance.

In her travels, Mab has been fortunate enough to cross paths and study with some of the greatest ethnic folk percussionists: Daveed (of Turku), Susu Pampanin, Suhail Kasper, Seido Salifoski, Kevin Hartnell, Raquy Danziger, and many more!

With a wide spectrum of talents, music to dance, comedy and sideshow, Mab has constantly focused on one thing, making a good show.

Some of the skills Mab can bring to your event:

  • bed of nails
  • glass walking
  • straitjacket escape
  • block head
  • fire eating
  • bug eating
  • balloon swallow
  • comedy
  • singing
  • ukulele
  • MC
  • ethnic folk percussion

“I am a traveler. I am an artist, and performance is my art.  Whether it be music, acting, dance, sideshow, putting on a good show for the audience is the most rewarding thing I can think of.”

- Mab, Just Mab

Read what other people think of Mab in the Testimonials section.

What is “Jal A Drum”

You may have seen this phrase around Mab.  “Jal A Drum”.  The name Jal A Drum is derived from the phrase “Jal A Drom” which means “travel the road” in the Gypsy/Rom language.  As a performer, Mab has traveled all over this country, met some amazing musicians, danced with some fabulous people, and made some wonderful friends.

Life on the road. It is only quite recently, that Mab fell back in love with her home town, Washington DC.

Jal A Drum is the name used to encompass all of her projects and adventures. Jal A Drum is the name of the CD that she will someday release of field recordings from the road. Jal A Drum is the phrase she uses when asked to explain what type of music she plays, Mab travels the drum and touches on Turkish, Egyptian, Irish, Indian, Nordic, and African traditions. There are many things that Jal A Drum. The beat of a heart, the breath of a sound. all of these things are Jal A Drum.