When I tell people; “I work as a circus performer,” I always get: “So you’re a clown?” or “So you’ve run away and joined a circus now, have you?” For me, I haven’t physically “run away” (unless if you count Mississauga as far from North York, then I run away at least four times a week) but I have metaphorically run “into” a circus.
Through dance and school, circus came into my life and now I just can’t get enough. I have conducted these interviews to find out how some of the performers and artists of A2D2 ~ Aerial Dance Cirque Company, got started on their journey into the world of circus, why they do it, and what they recommend for new performers.
1. How did you get started?
I was doing a show in Vegas and we had an aerialist in the show that performed a silks act. I tried to climb a few times and failed miserably. Then I discovered that we had a hoop backstage, so after each show I would mess around with that…. and so it began
2. How long have you been training/performing?
I have been dancing professionally for (oh this is going to age me) 14 years, and performing aerial professionally for about 5 years.
3. Do you perform/train on multiple apparatus’s and if so which is your favorite? (If you have one?)
I perform primarily on the silks. I have taken a few trapeze classes, which I love, dabbled a wee bit on rope, have performed on both the cul and circus-sphere, pretend that I am small enough and bendy enough to do hoop, but primarily I stick to the silks.
4. Why do you love circus?
How can you not love it? I think that the first time I performed my aerial act I hadn’t been that nervous for a very long time and hadn’t felt that exhilarated ever! Performing in the air, above an audience takes that performing high to a whole new level for me. And lets not forget how ammmmazing circus make-up is
5. Did you have an athletic discipline prior to training circus arts? (What was it? Do you do it now? Why or why not?)
My family has ants in their pants so I have been hiking, biking, skiing; you name it from day one. I played most sports growing up, on top of being a competitive gymnast and transitioning into a competitive, then professional dancer. I still love and perform professionally in the dancing aspect, as well teach multiple fitness classes.
6. Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
I am co owner of a corporate entertainment company, so I see myself still doing that, and still performing…if my body keeps up! I love what I do and would never want to change that.
7. Any recommendations for new circus performers or trainers?
Start early…I see little kids at camps starting their training then, and I would have loved to have literally been born in a circus tent and have every apparatus and skill under my belt before 20!
Thanks so much to Jamie for taking the time to do this interview. Stay tuned for the next A2D2 performers interview.