I saw K’s first circus show for the year last night. I have such goodwill for these shows.
Circus Juventas is a performing youth circus arts school. The spring shows are the school’s recital. All performing classes perform, regardless of age or readiness. You get your costume on, you get your gear, and you get out there and you perform.
The school is so large that the student body is divided into three section, or color groups. Each color does three shows and one dress/tech rehearsal. Leading up to this there have been regular classes, extra practices, and emergency extra practices. Ready or not, now you go on.
Last night was the Yellow show. Over 400 youth performers, 150 parent volunteers doing rigging and lighting and backstage-wrangling and locker-room-supervision and photography. The Toddler and Kinder acts always go first; three- and four- and five-year-olds dressed as naval officers and pirates, doing their respective acts.
The show is long. Over three hours, with an intermission. Every year they try to make sure the younger kids are all in the first half, so they can leave at 8:30 and go home. It doesn’t always work, but they try. K is now an older kid, and is in the second half for all nine shows.
The show last night had no mishaps. Sure, the Ringmistresses flubbed a couple of lines, but they recovered. Sure, a few unicyclists fell off their bikes, but they got back on. Only one of the flyers made it back to the bar, but ALL of them made it to the catcher without mishap. The clowns were funny. The kids juggling clubs didn’t drop anything. The rigging didn’t jam.
As always, there were a few costume or music choices that made me raise a brow. But the kids performing have no control over those things. They are given a costume and a song and a routines, and they do their best. They smile, and style, and they commit to whatever thing they are required to do. They are game, and I love that about them.
K was very, very tired last night. We got home, and I reminded her she needed to take her makeup off. We stood in the bathroom at 10:50 last night, smearing gunk on her eyelids and wiping them off. I gave her a lot of hugs, and told her she did great.
She did. She did great.