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Circus Harmony's The Balancing Act: Walking The Pandemic Tightrope Announced October 10

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Circus Harmony students and alumni will share how they are keeping their balance in this unbalanced time.

Circus Harmony's The Balancing Act: Walking The Pandemic Tightrope Announced October 10

Circus Harmony presents: The Balancing Act: Walking the Pandemic Tightrope on October 10th at 7pm featuring Circus Harmony students and alumni sharing how they are keeping their balance in this unbalanced time.

"This is a show unlike any we have ever done before for a time unlike any we have ever been in before," states Jessica Hentoff, Circus Harmony's Artistic/Executive Director. "This is an interesting and inspirational show presented by young people who will be most impacted by the worlds' current events. This is their personal point of view told circus-style! "

From their living rooms, backyards, bedrooms, and local parks, Circus Harmony students and alumni created new acts and will tell the stories of how they see what is going on in the world right now from the pandemic to the presidential election to racial justice. Circus Harmony thinks you will be inspired by their strength, grace, and resilience.

Tickets are FREE but registration is required to get the link on the day of the show. The show is something the whole family can watch together. It features great circus acts, wonderful young people, and some insight on keeping your balance in this unbalanced time. Like the circus itself, the show is daring and funny, exciting and entertaining, heart-stopping and heart-warming.

Circus is about humans overcoming challenges. Our entire world is challenged right now. When this global pandemic hit St. Louis, Circus Harmony had to close their school and, at the same time, all their outreach locations closed as well. One by one, all their shows- like Circus Flora, and all projects- like their Peace Through Pyramids partnership in Puerto Rico, were cancelled. At the same time, alumni who were touring the world with different circuses and attending different circus colleges were sent home. Hentoff shares, "As a nonprofit social circus school, we feel like we are walking a tightrope. Under normal circumstances, we know how to walk a tightrope, however the length keeps getting extended."

Jessica continues, "When you are learning to walk a tightrope, if you start to lose your balance, you don't stay in one place and fight to get it back. The best thing to do to regain your balance is to take your next step forward. As a nonprofit social circus school, we feel like we are walking a tightrope. Under normal circumstances, we know how to walk a tightrope, however the length keeps getting extended."

Examples of acts:

Lyla 9 years old. She lives in St. Louis City and is a very talented contortionist and hopes to become a professional circus performer. "2020 has been the worst year, ever! What can I say? I mean, I'm only 9 and still have a whole life to live!...One of things that sticks out to me most this year is the Black Lives Matters movement partly because it gives me anxiety. Every time another black person gets killed, shot, or beaten, it gets talked about and posted about all over the world. How am I supposed to keep an innocent mind if it is everywhere? Half of my family is Black - including me!"

Siblings Anna and Oliver 14 and 19 years old. In their act, they are wearing shirts they got while involved in local Black Lives Matter protest marches. Their piece is a beautiful partner acrobatic act that they created, and their narrative talks about how grateful they were for the time they got to spend together this year because of the pandemic.

Alumni Claire Wallenda. Claire married Alex Wallenda and now walks wire with the Flying Wallendas. She literally talks about pandemic positives as she is balanced on the wire.

Alumni Sidney Iking. Sidney graduated from their program, went to circus college in Montreal, and was working for Cirque du Soleil when a PR stunt between Cirque and WWE, the wrestling franchise, turned into a new opportunity for him. Right before the pandemic, he switched from professional circus performer to professional wrestler. When the pandemic hit, Cirque du Soleil declared bankruptcy but the state of Florida declared wrestlers essential - so he is still working. He demonstrates how he has taken his tumbling from circus ring to wrestling ring.

Lacy 16 years old. Lacy talks about how she has "been wearing my smile just like my mask to keep her loved ones safe because everyone has enough on their plates, as is, without worrying about me as well." She talks about how scared she is for her family since her mother works in a hospital with CoVid patients. She balances on the unicycle in our show and takes care of her baby sister with one hand while juggling with the other.

Ethan 15 years old. He talks about how he's had to set new goals for himself to build his strength to keep his balance now so he is ready when we can go back to working together in person. He is the base of so many of our pyramids and wants to be ready to take that role back when his circus family can be together again. He and his partners do a socially-distanced object manipulation act where the object they are juggling represents the virus.

Dennis 12 years old. A resident of Ferguson, he talks about how stressed he is about school, life, and whether or not he, a family member, or a friend might die during the pandemic but how drawing and circus help him manage his stress. He does a family unicycle act with his parents and brothers.

Alumni Melvin Diggs. High-flying alumni Melvin was touring the world and performing in Moscow with Cirque du Soleil when the pandemic hit. He talks about how the circus saved his life and opened the doorway to opportunities for him and how finding your community will help you through the pandemic.

These are only a sample of the Circus Harmony family who the audience will meet in The Balancing Act: Walking the Pandemic Tightrope, on October 10 at 7 pm CT. This is a show unlike any they have ever performed before for a time unlike any they have ever lived in before. Tickets are free but you need to register at www.circusharmony.org.



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