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American Circus Circus History Photography Women

Changing Face of Global Circus Industry – Panel Discussions

CircusTalk in cooperation with The Circus Arts Hub is presenting a series of talks with leading circus creators and creative producers around the globe.

Circus and Changing Realities 2020 is a curated set of online panels (since March 2020), where we discuss the changing face of the global circus industry. We delve into best practices, improvements, and adaptations, and we do not shy away from asking challenging questions and touching on sensitive issues that concern the future of our community.

~ Circus Presenters and Producers on Planning for the future ~

To access this next event scheduled for Sept 7th, 2020 click here.


What approaches can we take at the moment? What do we know? How can we continue to build audiences, improve touring and sustainability for small companies, and increase sector diversity?

New York 8am, Montreal 8am, London 1pm, Paris 2pm, Melbourne 10pm

Anke Politz Managing Director and Artistic Director, Chameleon, Berlin

Ruth Wikler, Deputy Director of Programming, Circus Arts/ TOHU, Montreal

Linda Catalano Quiet Riot Unlimited (including Hot Brown Honey), Melbourne, Australia

Chaired by Antonella Casella

Date: Sept. 07, 2020
10:00 pm time zone:(UTC+10) Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney, Guam


For a list of all online panels (since March 2020) click here!

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Categories
American Circus Circus Clown Comedy History Performing Arts Sideshow Tent Show Women

PBS – American Experience – ‘The Circus’

Certainly one of the most interesting forms of popular entertainment America has experienced. Now – with the pandemic and final curtain call for Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus…what is next?

Here is a wonderful excerpt from the American Experience special titled “The Circus”.

This four-hour mini-series tells the story of one of the most popular and influential forms of entertainment in American history. Through the intertwined stories of several of the most innovative and influential impresarios of the late nineteenth century, this series reveals the circus was a uniquely American entertainment created by a rapidly expanding and industrializing nation; that it embraced and was made possible by Western imperialism; that its history was shaped by a tension between its unconventional entertainments and prevailing standards of respectability; and that its promise for ordinary people was the possibility for personal reinvention. For many Americans, the circus embodied the improbable and the impossible, the exotic, and the spectacular. Drawing upon a vast and richly visual archive and featuring a host of performers, historians, and aficionados, The Circus follows the rise and fall of the gigantic, traveling tented railroad circus and brings to life an era when Circus Day would shut down a town and its stars were among the most famous people in the country.

To Watch this Series click here!


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Categories
Aerial Acts Bindlestiff Open Stage Variety Show Circus Comedy Dixon Place Juggling Magic Performing Arts Sideshow Video Women

Bindlestiff Open Stage Variety Show – Quarantine Edition – May 18th, 2020

Host Keith Nelson introduces the acts of tonight’s show.

Magic man Torkova performs two different amazing feats. One with multiplying candles and the second producing two bowls of oranges.

Erin Stephens performs a very skilled juggling set in a beautiful studio setting.

Patrick Garner performs a ‘tribute’ to Senior Wences ‘one-handed’ ventriloquism act

Stephanie Monseu models the ‘Top Chatter’ banner awarded to Angleo Iodice.

Presenting a show has many costs. To help defray these please see the above methods for donating to this cause. Bindlestiff Family Cirkus is a ‘not-for-profit’ 501(c)3 organization.

Fernanda Sumano performed a high energy hula-hoop act that allowed us to follow her through the house she was performing into the street and then the roof!

Wilfredo sang a lovely song for the viewers which included the ever-present “I”.

Keith Nelson introduces the ‘Ask Hovey’ segment of the show.

Circus historian/performer/author Hovey Burgess talks about the Hagenbeck & Wallace Circus train wreck of 1918.

Justin Weber performs his amazingly wonderful Yoyo act with colored light projections.

Keith Nelson catches all six spoons and keeps all 6 plates spinning!

Alisa Mae performs a ‘satirical’ aerial act with rolls of toilet paper.

Host Keith introduces the last act. The Kalvan Family!

The Kalvan Family had all the right moves and everyone had great skills!

The online Virtual curtain call for all the performers from the show. (and tech crew!)

Come back next Monday for another great Bindlestiff Open Stage Quarantine Edition Variety Show!


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Categories
Book Shelf Circus Comedy History Performing Arts Vaudevisuals Bookshelf

Vaudevisuals Bookshelf – “The Grand Gypsy” A Memoir by Ottavio Canestrelli

 ~ The Grand Gypsy ~

A Memoir by Ottavio Canestrelli with Ottavio Gesmundo

The Grand Gypsy is a memoir of life in the circus, filled with daring feats and tragic mishaps. It is the true story of a man who experienced historical events as he toured with his family through five continents and countless nations. Among these events are his harrowing experience fighting in World War I against the German Army in Italy, and the excavation of the Sphinx in Egypt.

Replete with over 150 rare, historic photographs, The Grand Gypsy is a chronicle of a circus dynasty from the late nineteenth century in Europe to the new millennium in the United States of America. Included are significant images that document an extensive tour through such exotic locations as Burma, Sumatra, New Guinea, Syria, and Mesopotamia during the early twentieth century, and numerous portraits and captured performances in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Hollywood, Las Vegas, and Sarasota, Florida.



“The Grand Gypsy is indeed fascinating and highly enjoyable reading, not only for anyone interested in circus history but also for any curious or adventurous mind.”

Dominique Jando – Editor, Circopedia.org

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“The story of Ottavio Canestrelli is unique and this book, rich with history and filled with humor, is fresh and memorable.” – “readers will definitely be interested in his remarkable story.” 

The Booklife Prize by Publisher’s Weekly

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“The story of his travels, his acts and those of his talented family will enthrall any reader, and this is a most well-written and structured book”  

Circus Report

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“The roster of names dropped along the way, along with an expansive collection of photographs from every period covered in the book, should provide a good deal of pleasure”.

Spectacle Magazine

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“​The pictures in the book are astonishing. With its pictures and rich anecdotes, this is a treasure of a book.”

Judge, 25th Annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards


BUY IT HERE!


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Categories
American Circus Circus Clown Performing Arts

Mr. Amazings Circus Corner – Every Wed. @4pm

Come One, Come All! every Wednesday, 4 pm EST, to Mr. Amazing’s Circus Corner! A special guest artist every week presented by America’s Ringmaster, Mr. Amazing, from Nyack’s only true circus, Amazing Grace CIRCUS!

Join the Circus Zoom Room this Wed, May 13, with your kids, grandkids, and friends! There’s always something surprising happening at Mr. Amazing’s Circus Corner!

This week the Circus Corner will be visited by Professor BILLY BONES and his PIRATE SCHOOL!

Here is the link to view the show!

Password: Circus123

 

Enjoy the show!

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Categories
Bindlestiff Open Stage Variety Show Charlie Chaplin Circus Clown Comedy Dixon Place Juggling Magic Music Performing Arts Physical Theater Sideshow Women

Bindlestiff Open Stage Variety Show – Quarantine Edition – May 4th, 2020

The beginning of May and the sun is shining and the weather is getting nicer here in New York. May 4th had many great surprises for the viewers!

Host Keith Nelson introduces the show to the viewers.

The Bindlestiff Open Stage is made possible by donations from the viewers like you.

Opening the show was The Great Dubini. (Greg Dubin). He swallowed several razor blades and then regurgitated them on a thread he also ate!


Zander Mowat juggled and balanced many household items amazingly!


Eva Lou Rhinelander juggled, did backbends, walk on a wire, and many other wonderful circus feats.


Michael Rosman painted this Chaplin portrait while it was upside down.


Circus historian, performer, author Hovey Burgess gives the viewers a brief history of the Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus.


The beautiful and talented Rachel Karabenick performs on the trapeze.


Keith Nelson does so eccentric hat juggling.


Drew Brown performed an extremely delightful cane juggling act.


Gigi (Gina Allison) and the ever so talented dog Zeus did some really nice tricks.


Keith Nelson attempted the sideshow stunt Kendama-Blockhead once more!


David Cain performed numerous juggling stunts.


Sxip Shirey performs live eccentric music as Jonathan Nosan performs his impossible contortions.


Make sure to visit the Dixon Place DP TV shows going on daily!

Make sure you donate to the Bindlestiff Open Stage to keep it happening!

Would you like to perform at the Open Stage? Email: Keith@bindlestiff.org

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Categories
Circus Juggling Performing Arts Southern Sideshow Hootenanny Variety Arts Vaudeville Vaudevisuals Interview Writer

Vaudevisuals interview with Thom Wall – Publisher – Modern Vaudeville Press

During my 4 days documenting the Southern Sideshow Hootenanny in New Orleans in early March, I sat down with juggler Thom Wall (who performed at the Festival in the All-Star and Living Legends Show) and he talked about his niche publishing company Modern Vaudeville Press.

All the titles can be purchased at the website Modern Vaudeville Press

Juggling from Antiquity to the Middle Ages by Thom Wall

How to Become a Juggler by Rupert Ingalese

Body Talk – Basic Mime by Mano Diamond

More titles are in the works.

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Categories
Burlesque Cafe Istanbul Circus Comedy Juggling Magic Performing Arts Photography Sideshow Southern Sideshow Hootenanny Tattoo Women

6th Annual Southern Sideshow Hootenanny – New Orleans

March 6-8th, 2020 – New Orleans – Cafe Istanbul

A visual survey of the 6th Annual Southern Sideshow Hootenanny. Part 1 of 3.

Monsters of Schlock hosted the ‘Sideshow Innovators’ Show – Friday, March 6th, 2020.

Jezzibel performs the infamous ‘blockhead’ act with an ice pick.

Jezzibel performs a ‘spark’ spectacular finale.

Lunival Lousion performs a wonderful hula-hoop act.

Betsy Propane entertains the audience with her lovely voice while escaping from her straight jacket.

Jared Janssen charmingly performed juggled with ‘live food’.

Betsy Ritz caught a tongue on her mousetrap while kneeling on the floor.

Dante fooled the audience with his charming magic act.

Salem added a touch of the bizarre with the outfit and magical offerings.

Salem combined the ‘blockhead’ act with the seductive.

Chatty the Mime performed silently combining the chair with mimetic skills.

Nathan McScary dazed the audience with his single-handed knot tying tricks.

Emma D’Lemma performed many skills including walking on bottles.

Sweet Pepper Klopek has his tongue caught in a mousetrap set off by his partner

The Monsters of Schlock finish off the evening’s festivities. Sweet Pepper prepares to slam the cinderblock with a sledgehammer on his partner’s groin. But first a gentlemanly hand butt.

This is the first of 3 separate shows that I documented at The Southern Sideshow Hootenanny. Check back in the next few days for photographs of the other two shows. The All-Star and Living Legends Show (Sat night) – Troupe Night(Sunday show.)

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Categories
Circus Comedy Music Performing Arts Photography Vaudevisuals Interview Video

Cirque Mechanics – @The New Victory Theater

42FT – A Menagerie of Mechanical Marvels by Cirque Mechanics

I sat down with Chris Lashua in the dressing room of The New Victory Theater to find out about his company Cirque Mechanics. I have been wanting to see his show since he first appeared at this theater. Now the company is here with the new show 42FT.

The performance troupe Cirque Mechanics combines machine gadgetry with the circus arts. (Photograph ©2019 Maike Schulz)

More of Maike’s wonderful photographs of the show.

Pictured: Taylor Stevens, Brooke Nielson (on the ladder) Wes Hatfield, Michael Rubino, Brysen Bishop(on the ground)

Chris talks about the process of working on a new circus routine.

 

Logo on the Cirque Mechanics website

Here is a great video about the show from the company’s website.

42FT – A MENAGERIE OF MECHANICAL MARVELS

– December 6 – January 5, 2020 –

– THE NEW VICTORY THEATER –

TICKETS/More information

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Categories
Auction Circus Circus Memorabilia Clown Coney Island USA Exhibit Posters Potter & Potter Auction Sideshow Women

Circus • Sideshow • Oddities  – Potter & Potter Auction

  NOVEMBER 16, 2019 • 10:00 AM

Featuring the circus collection of Dave & Mary Jane Price, the November sale is slated to include nearly 1000 vintage circus posters, plus costumes, model circus trains, and other relics from bygone wonder-shows. The circus collectibles will be complemented by an array of unusual, uncommon, and unbelievable oddities, sideshow memorabilia, banners, photographs, taxidermy, and relics of the “believe it or not” variety. Highlights include Tom Thumb memorabilia, sideshow electric chairs, and props, and big, bold banners from the masters of the form.

Catalogs ship approximately three weeks before the auction. Previews will be held in our gallery on November 14—15, 10—5 pm.

~Here are a few amazing items from the entire collection being auctioned~

The first item is a side-show banner painted by Coney Island USA‘s own Marie Roberts.

Roberts, Marie. Ravi The Bendable Boy from Bombay. Sideshow Banner. Coney Island, 2004. The vibrant banner shows this contortionist bent inside a trunk, text below and above. Flown at the Coney Island Sideshow. 66 x 57”.

Mule-Face Woman. Sideshow Banner by Snap Wyatt. Tampa, FL, ca. the 1960s. Enormous double-length painted canvas sideshow banner. 240 x 108”. Signed “Snap Wyatt Studios/Rt. 3 Tampa Fla”.

Currier Lithograph of General Tom Thumb. Barnum’s Gallery of Wonders. New York: Nathaniel Currier, ca. 1849. Lithograph colored by hand, the central image after a daguerreotype by Plumbe. 14 x 10 ¼”. Margins trimmed, pale soiling around edges, short tears, and creases.

Buffalo Bill Cody Cabinet Card Photograph. New York: Stacy, ca. 1900. Cody is seen wearing his Stetson hat and embroidered buckskin jacket, with few patches of grey in his hair. Facsimile signature to verso as issued. 6 ½ x 4 ¼”. Few stains to verso, else fine.

San Antonio’s Siamese Twins Daisy and Violet Hilton. The Sensation of Vaudeville. Kansas City: Quigley Litho, ca. the 1930s. Color lithograph depicting the famous conjoined twins. 42 x 27 ¾”. Linen-backed. Expertly restored losses and tears in image and margins, rubs and abrasions.

Ripley, Robert. Wilber Plumhoff the Pain Proof Man / Believe It Or Not. N.p., ca. the 1940s. Color poster depicting the performer with nails, pins, and buttons pierced through his skin. 28 x 21”. Linen-backed. Scattered restored losses to edges and along folds. B.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. Side Show. Erie Litho, the 1930s. Offset color lithograph poster depicting the circus’s sideshow cast, prominently depicting violin and piano playing conjoined twins, a giant with little people, and others in the background. 18 ½ x 28”. Linen-backed. Restored losses and over-coloring, mostly in margins and edges, some inpainting to tears in image. B.

Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey. Francis Brunn. Greatest Juggler World Has Ever Known. The 1940s. Color lithograph portraying the performer juggling hoops while balancing balls on his fingertips and nose. 27 x 41”. Unmounted. Remnants of date-tail removal from bottom margin, folds, minimal edgewear. B.

Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus. Blacaman Hindu Animal Hypnotist. Erie Litho, ca. 1930s. Offset lithograph poster depicts the performer hypnotizing massive ferocious lions, lightning bolts radiating from the hypnotist’s eyes. 27 ½ x 41”. Linen-backed. Restored losses and tears in margins; a few repaired closed tears in image. B.

Forepaugh and Sells Brothers Circus. Madison Square Garden. Cincinnati: Strobridge Litho, 1898. One-sheet color lithograph poster depicting Madison Square Garden. 30 x 40”. Linen-backed. Margins trimmed a little unevenly, losses along vertical fold, repaired closed tears. B.

World of Mirth Shows. Dolly Jacobs. World’s Foremost Lady Trainer of Wild Animals. Erie Litho, ca. the 1940s. Offset color lithograph showing the female lion and tiger trainer brandishing a whip. 41 x 13 ¼”. Linen-backed. Marginal stains and creases scattered restoration along folds. B-.

Cole Bros. Circus. The Great Grimes. Erie Litho, 1930s. Offset lithograph poster depicts the high-wire equilibrist act in which two men on bicycle balance a woman standing on the shoulders of a man on a chair. 40 x 26”. Mounted to Kraft paper. Old folds. Bright copy. B+.

Cole Bros. Circus. Harold Barnes. Erie Litho, ca. 1935. Offset lithograph circus poster depicts the acrobat on the high wire above cheerleaders in circus sweaters with tennis rackets in hand. 27 x 18”. Mounted to Kraft paper. Scattered losses and tears in image and along folds, dated in ink upper left. C.

Cole Bros. Circus. Getting Ready for the Ring. Erie Litho, 1930s. Offset color lithograph poster shows a man in baggy suit tying the slippers of a beautiful woman of the circus, as a clown and acrobat watch from the tent. 27 x 18”. Mounted to Kraft paper. Old folds. B+.

Cole Bros. Circus. Allen King. Battling, Snarling, Roaring, Man-Eating Wild Animals. Erie Litho, ca. the 1930s. Color offset lithograph. 28 x 41”. Linen-backed. Restored losses and over-coloring in margins; restored small losses and inpainting along folds. B+.

Barnum and Bailey. Cleopatra. Cincinnati: Strobridge Litho., 1912. Intricate design includes eight vignettes, the centermost being portraits of the circus’ founders, P. T. Barnum and J. A. Bailey. “Cleopatra pageant” illustrated in three others. Ornate masthead. 39 5/8 x 30”. Faint tide marks stains in the lower margin. Linen-backed. B.

Al. G. Barnes—Sells Floto and John Robinson. The Human Fly Anna Merkel. Erie Litho, ca. 1938. Color offset lithograph depicts the performer in a feat of upside-down ceiling walking. Date-tail for performance in Decatur. 36 x 21”. Linen-backed. Nice copy; minimal touch-ups along central fold; small losses in margins and image expertly repaired. B+.

Achille Philion. The Marvelous Equilibrist and Originator. Buffalo: Courier, 1898. Color lithograph. 28 ½ x 42”. Older linen backing. Chipping and tears in margins, a few extending into image; restored losses in margins. B. Another version of the poster replaces “An Attraction Without Parallel” with the name of the circus Philion performed for, Adam Forepaugh and Sells Brothers.

Living Wonders! Unprecedented Novelties! American, ca. 1870. Circus sideshow broadside featuring woodcuts of a snake charmer, “The Mammoth Fat Girl” of Illinois, and “The Arab Giant” Col. Routh Goshen, and other living attractions. Matted to 25 x 13”. Minor foxing; very good.

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For more information and to bid go here!

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