Cicrus Sarasota- the spotlights, the thrills, the challenge, the excited crowds, the smells, the glittering costumes, the clowns: everything to overload the senses, but after decades, the performers say it never leaves your blood

Cicrus Sarasota- the spotlights, the thrills, the challenge, the excited crowds, the smells, the glittering costumes, the clowns: everything to overload the senses, but after decades, the performers say it never leaves your blood
Photo Credit: After Circus

Documentary film: After Circus-lives of performers

They come from vary diverse backgrounds but quickly become a close knit family, in fact in some cases their lives depend on each other.

Dolly Jacobs and Rafael Palacios: incredible strength needed to make it look effortless (and safe) combined with the artistry of the choreography; practic practice practice
Dolly Jacobs and Rafael Palacios: incredible strength needed to make it safe while looking effortless combined with the artistry of the choreography; practice practice practice © After Circus

They are the circus performers..and oh don’t confuse them with carnival folks..that’s entirely different.

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These  circus entertainers work extremely hard at their various skills. To thrill the crowds in the big top, many of these acts are actually quite dangerous. They usually require various exceedingly high levels of timing, skill, and strength.

Thelma Kemp holds a photo of herself when she was a star aerialist
Thelma Kemp holds a photo of herself when she was a star aerialist © After Circus Productions
Jeanette Williams- her act used to involve 24 trained horses.
Jeanette Williams- her act used to involve 24 trained horses. © After Circus

But after years of performing, the crowds, the noise, the applause, cheers, and gasps of amazement or fear from the onlookers, the reflexes, the strength fades, and they have to leave a tradition that is in their blood, something they truly love and can never ‘really’ leave behind.

Dolly and Khera- training the next generation of aerialists in the tradition circus
Dolly and Khera- training the next generation of aerialists in the tradition circus © After Circus
Caroline William- a circus has to have a horse act, that’s why circuses have the ring
Caroline William- a circus has to have a horse act, that’s why circuses have the ring © After Circus

Over a period of three years Viveka Melki of Tortuga Films in Quebec, spoke to many of these ageing performers in Sarasota Florida. She is the  director of the documentary film, After Circus.

Jackie LeClair, *Ambassador of Mirth*
Jackie LeClair, *Ambassador of Mirth* © After Circus

*After Circus  will be broadcast in Canada on Sunday, June 12 at 9 pm ET/10 pm PT.

Director of the documentary film After Circus, Viveka Melki
Director of the documentary film After Circus, Viveka Melki © After Circus- Tortuga Films
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