MOUNTAIN VILLAGE – The circus is coming to Mountain Village, Friday, Dec. 13-Sunday, Dec. 15, 12-6 p.m., when its buskers can be seen strolling through town with high-wire and on-the-ground entertainment.
They’re are part of Cirquecore, an organization offering weekend classes and/or workshops for children, teens and adults in tumbling, acrobatics, juggling, walking globes and unicycles, prop-making, stilts, hula-hoops, juggling, puppets and, for the especially brave, introductions to trapeze and other aerial apparatus. “It’s all about core strength,” says longtime circus performer Keith Wolfe, of Cirquecore coursework that strengthens core muscles, deltoids, traps, quads and lats using everything from the static trapeze to silks to lycra. Wolfe has been busking for nearly two decades, as well as working in multiple circus troupes and as a featured performer on two Cirque Du Soleil promotional teams.
Joining Wolfe is Dan Stern, a juggler, acrobat and aerialist, who holds a bachelor degree in religious studies and has interned at the Israel Circus School, studying where he studied acrobalance and duo trapeze and taught static trapeze and juggling to Arab and Israeli youth. He is a graduate of the New England Center for Circus Arts’ Professional Program, where he specialized in partner acrobatics and aerial straps under Sellam al Ouahabi. Since graduating, he has split his time between training, instructing and performing. He is an Artist in Residence at the Philadelphia School of Circus Arts, where he coaches aerial straps, acrobatics and hand-to-hand. When not in Philadelphia, Stern can be found teaching workshops across the country, instructing or catching on the flying trapeze, or continuing his training in Montreal under coaches Jonathan Fortin (straps) and Jerome le Baut (hand-to-hand).
Shannon McKenna rounds out the trio; a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts with a bachelor of fine arts degree in theater, McKenna studied trapeze at Canopy Studios in Athens, Georgia, and then took a two-year professional development program at The New England Center for Circus Arts. McKenna now teaches and performs all over the country as a solo artist and with the aerial company Girls on Trapeze, working to inspire strength and creativity through teaching in the air and on the ground. She gives her beginning students a solid foundation, emphasizing safety, strength training, and proper technique. She encourages her advanced students to add their own personality and creative license to aerials arts by giving them the tools and guidance to invent their own tricks and poses.
Cirquecore teaches donation-based Juggle Jam classes for all ages Tuesdays, 6-8p.m., in their studio at 622B Mountain Village Drive, behind the Wells Fargo Bank, in the Palmyra Building. They will be teaching after-school classes for kids, and hosting Little Big Tops weekend workshops, Friday-Sunday (9 a.m.-12p.m. and 1-4 p.m. each day), for kids ages 6-14, $200 a day or $500 for three days.
For more information, visit Cirquecore.com.