Joe Riggs, mentalist
Move over, Benedict Cumberbatch. There’s a new Sherlock Holmes in town and his name is Joe Riggs. The internationally known mentalist and deductionist, influenced by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s famous consulting detective, has a knack for reading people just by looking at them. Essentially, lying to Riggs isn’t a good idea, unless you’re at one of his performances where he might wow you and the audience by calling you out on your fib. Raised by psychics, Riggs, 35, has been entertaining and consulting for 15 years and even puts his talents to use at law enforcement agencies. Sound familiar? That’s because Riggs’ story is the premise for CBS’ “The Mentalist,” in which Patrick Jane (Simon Baker) helps solve crimes using his “reading” abilities—and Riggs can proudly say he served as a consultant for the first two seasons of the award-winning series. Did we mention he just moved to Baltimore for love? Let him pick your brain at a free public performance on Thursday, Sept. 4 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Johnny’s in Roland Park. theworldofjoeriggs.com
Abbi Jacobson, comedian/actress/writer/producer
Don’t go to Bed, Bath and Beyond without coupons, because Abbi Jacobson (left) wouldn’t approve. She also wouldn’t approve if you haven’t seen “Broad City,” Comedy Central’s freshest series in recent memory. Jacobson, a MICA alum, and Ilana Glazer turned their web series into a half-hour scripted comedy (produced by Amy Poehler) that premiered earlier this year, about two broke twenty-somethings living in New York City. Portraying fictionalized versions of themselves, Abbi is the well-intentioned, unlucky aspiring artist—a perfect contrast to Ilana, a sexually adventurous free spirit and freeloader. Provocative, relevant and downright hilarious, the show provides one of the most
genuine friendships on TV. (It helps that The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre alumni are also BFFs in real life.) “Broad City” is available on VOD services and has been renewed for a second season.
Noah Himmelstein, theater and opera director
Noah Himmelstein is certainly making a name for himself in the theater world. Having directed numerous plays and operas including “Things I Left On Long Island,” “Positions 1956,” and “Loving Leo,” his latest project is the 12-movement oratorio “I Am Harvey Milk,” which has been a monumental achievement for the Pikesville native and Carver Center for Arts and Technology graduate. Part choral work, part theater, “Milk” follows the life of the first openly gay man to hold public office and has been performed seven times around the country over the past two years—the most recent being a massive reunion show featuring more than 500 men from choruses and orchestrasacross the country at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. “It’s the most extraordinary thing I’ve been a part of,” Himmelstein says. “My mission is to combine opera and theater.” “Milk” can next be seen Oct. 6 at Avery Fisher Hall in New York City, starring its writer/composer Andrew Lippa and Kristin Chenoweth.
Baltimore Ravens tight end Owen Daniels can’t wait to take Baltimore by storm. “The fan base here is unbelievable,” says the former Houston Texans tight end who brings his offensive skills to the field—along with meteorological talents. A University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate with a degree in atmospheric and oceanic science, Daniels acquired the nickname “The Weatherman” after delivering a forecast on the local news in Madison, a hobby that followed him to this year’s Super Bowl, where he and Al Roker delivered the game-day forecast on the Weather Channel. “I’ve been interested in weather since I was a kid,” says Daniels, who grew up near Chicago. “I’ve tried to keep my foot in the door for my post-NFL career—seeing what I can do in front of the camera.” Daniels is already in talks to find a community service project in Baltimore. His Catching Dreams Foundation in Houston provides critically ill kids with iPads, PlayStations and portable DVD players to help pass the time while they’re in treatment.