"Lord Franzannian," photo by Heather Schofner

by Molly Gilmore for OLY ARTS

Veteran vaudevillian Lord Franzannian is back in town.

Franzannian is the host of Lord Franzannian’s Royal Olympian Spectacular Vaudeville Show, the 10th edition of which opens Oct. 14.

He’s also the alter ego of storyteller/actor/director/producer Elizabeth Lord, transformed with rosy cheeks, a fake mustache and a big belly she found years ago at The Midnight Sun, the venue where the show got its start.

This fall, the spectacular happens at Obsidian—where, Lord points out, food and beverages are available. It’s also a bigger venue, important because the show has grown increasingly popular over the years.

This year, past favorites Sam Miller and Lauren O’Neill are back, as is Lord herself, which is to say she’ll do skits as well as hosting.

The show has been named for Franzannian since year one. The name was a combination of Lord’s name and that of Mark Franzen, with whom she started the show. But that first show didn’t feature Lord dressed in drag as the blustering host, whom she imagines to be a bit of a lech.

“The first year, there wasn’t a Lord Franzannian,” she said. “I had that bandleader hat, but I had my blond hair curled in ringlets. I had that red coat on, but I had black pants on and a gold lamé shirt. That was interesting.”

Franzannian was born when Lord found the belly, which she suspects was meant to simulate pregnancy.

“I put it on and pulled it up high,” she said. “I put on these extra-big pants and the fake mustache and thought oh, my gosh, here’s the guy.

“When you put on a costume, when you alter your form, it changes everything,” she added. “It changes the way I walk, and it gives me a different voice.”

What: Lord Franzannian’s Royal Olympian Spectacular Vaudeville Show

Where: Obsidian,
414 Fourth Ave. E, Olympia

When: 8 p.m. Friday through Sunday, Oct. 14-16 and 21-23;
a family-friendly matinee at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 23

How much: $15-$25 (no one turned away for lack of funds)

Get tickets: Brown Paper Tickets or at the door

Also: Except for the matinee, which is appropriate for all ages, this show is recommended for ages 16 and older.