Gertrude Stein Questionnaire: Barbara Wilgus of Fluid Movement

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Barbara Wilgus is the co-creator and co-producer of this year’s Fluid Movement water ballet, “Goldblum: The Water Ballet,” in which a fictional Jeff Goldblum takes a spiritual journey through his own film history — all in the form of water ballet. She is a board member of Fluid Movement and wishes to spread the love of all things glitter to every public space available in Baltimore.


Name: Barbara Wilgus

Age: 45

Occupation: In addition to producing this year’s water ballet and also producing a documentary about Baltimore’s competitive karaoke league, I squeeze in a career as a nurse practitioner in women’s reproductive health and HIV care at Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Baltimore Neighborhood: Hamilton

Obsessive Collections: Art. I am an art collector. My collection is comprised largely of Baltimore based or Baltimore affiliated artists, and I am quite serious about it. I try to purchase at least one piece per year, though sometimes wall space and finances force me to take some time away from it. I firmly believe that the Baltimore culture at present is a modern day “Paris in the 20’s.” I take great inspiration from the Cone sisters, who amassed one of the most important collections of art by simply buying it from their friends at the time. One day, I will have a wing at the BMA too. That’s my plan, and I’m sticking to it!

Currently Reading: The First Bad Man by Miranda July

Coolest Place You’ve Ever Lived or Travelled To: I think Baltimore is the coolest place I have ever lived. However, I recently was at a conference in Savannah, GA and fell in love with it as well. It’s so gorgeous and old and haunted and weird. Thanks to SCAD they have a thriving art scene as well.

Hobbies or Leisure Activities: Competitive karaoke, inhaling film and books, biking, swimming.

Favorite Food to Eat at Home: It’s summer time, so my favorite currently is that I make a sensational vichysoisse, which is a cold potato leek soup blended until smooth with cream. I make a large vat that I can eat for days. The recipe is always being tinkered with, this year I have added artichoke hearts to the mix and it’s fabulous.

Favorite Food to Eat Out: The Smoked Hen Pie at Liam Flynn’s Ale House is so orgasmically delicious that I say a prayer every morning that he will bring it back soon [hear that, Liam?].

Favorite Beverage of Choice: Wine, oceans of wine.

Political Leanings: I like to call myself part of the Rational Party. It seems like a smaller and smaller group of us are left, sadly…

Favorite Baltimore spot to hang out: Druid Hill Country Club, which has a special swim time for adult pass holders only on Saturday and Sunday mornings at Druid Hill Park Pool. It is such a phenomenal, diverse, joyful group of people that go there. I have learned more about how to live life to the fullest from my friends there than anywhere else. Plus the pool is spectacularly beautiful, and the water is COLD!

Pets: My beloved cat, Carrietta.

Favorite Artist, Living or Dead: I’m going to use this section to name check Baltimore artists! My collection includes works from Spoon Popkin, S Philip G, Mark Cottman, Cathy Trani, Jodi Hoover, Matt Muirhead, Beppi Isbert, Justin Sabe, Michael Owen, Tony Shore, Minas Konsolas, Christine Sajecki, Ellis Marsalis III, Kevin Sherry, and that’s just off the top of my head and doesn’t include sculpture. I am coveting works by Lania D’Agostino, Pablo Machioli, and Mattye Hamilton [darn you, space and money!]. There are so many more amazing artists in our town. Everyone should own Baltimore art!

Movie that Sums Up the Current State of Your Life: Well, if you take every film Jeff Goldblum has been in, mash them up into one giant movie, and take a spiritual journey through them, that’s the current state of my life. I have been working on this production for the better part of two years now, so it kind of has taken over my life.

Favorite Bad Habit: Peppering my language with f* bombs. Though I hear people who curse live longer so maybe that habit isn’t so bad.

Mantra or Favorite Quote: “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” – Mary Oliver



Performances of “Goldblum: The Water Ballet” will be July 25/26 at Patterson Park Pool, and August ½ at Druid Hill Park Pool. For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit

“Goldblum: The Water Ballet” has been supported by a grant from the William G Baker, Jr Memorial Fund, creators of the Baker Artist Awards.

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