ABSFest is proud to offer Burlesque, Circus and Business Workshops! Train with artists from around the country in the ABSfest Sexy Seminary in stagecraft, circus arts, fire performance, burlesque and more. Open to all levels! Dive on in. 

EDUCATION is an essential component of ABSfest. JOIN US FOR WORKSHOPS! Our classes are amazingly priced at $35 adv./$45 day of.

Saturday Workshops:


Veil Poi with Dana Beaufait – The Big Stage

Come sample the beautiful and meditative arts of Veil Poi! Dana Beaufait is the ORIGINAL creator of Veil Poi and has taught this stage-worthy skill in the US and Japan to flow artists, bellydancers, variety performers and folks just looking for something new and fun! On offer are both basic technique and serious in-depth tricks for the willing. Both Poi and Voi will be available for loan and purchase at the class.

Poi Workshop $35.00

Legendary Songwriting with Charming Disaster – Community Room

This 90-minute interactive songwriting workshop is geared toward both beginner and experienced songwriters. It will be fun and low-stakes, but also give you practical tools you can use in your own creative practice.

Together we will explore tools, tricks and techniques for generating inspiration, crafting lyrics, and working through creative blocks, including: songwriting prompts, mind-mapping exercises, what are the right questions to ask when you feel stuck, and more. We’ll do exercises and write a song together to put these approaches into practice. Although this workshop is focused on songwriting, most of the techniques we explore are relevant for any kind of art or performance.

Songwriting $35.00


Burlesque at its Best When it all Goes Wrong with May Hemmer – The Big Stage

The wrong music plays…the music shuts off…you’re working with a live band…it all goes wrong. What do you do?! How can you save the situation? Let’s work on the fine art of going with the flow. We’ll stretch, warm up and share a couple of hilarious stories of stage nightmares before exploring some show-stopping, routine-saving tactics. We will also practice some graceful moves to cover tripping, falling, slipping, etc. Our cool down period will be followed by a Q&A. Bring your dancing shoes, because we will be grooving! There will be NO choreo to learn for this class. It’s all about getting out of your comfort zone. ALL LEVELS.

Adapting Workshop $35.00

Making Events Welcoming to Marginalized Performers with with Nadira and Miss Brawling Beauty – Community Room

FREE to the Community

Join us as we discuss how our events, festivals, tours, and shows can be more accessible and welcoming to marginalized performers. The legendary Brawling Beauty brings her experience making variety arts spaces friendly and accessible for LGBTQ+ and disabled artists. Nadira is an event organizer and community-builder with a passion for diversity and inclusion, bringing a POC perspective to this essential conversation. Come and learn with us!

Classes will be held at The Orange Peel – 101 Biltmore Ave, Asheville, NC 28801