And Some Good News
New Home for New England Center for Circus Arts
Co-founders and twin sisters Elsie Smith and Serenity Smith Forchion celebrated the ground breaking for a new building which will include a 5,800 square-foot “Trapezium” with a 40 ft. ceiling, further evidence of NECCA’s growth over the past decade. In addition to expanding the Center’s capacity to train the various circus arts, the project is seen by local supporters as having an economic benefit to the Brattleboro, VT area it calls home.
When complete, the complex will truly be “a national and international destination for circus arts,” Smith believes. In order to come this far NECCA raised $1,2m, about half of what the new building will eventually cost. In addition to the Trapezium, the new structure will include a reception office, vestibule, restrooms, and a second story mezzanine. “It means better safety, with building-specific equipment like an in-ground foam pit and an in-ground trampoline. It means higher ceilings for skills we’ve never been able to do here in Brattleboro at NECCA, like swinging trapeze, which is what Serenity and I performed with Cirque du Soleil,” Smith said. “Once we have both phases of this building complete, we’ll be able to teach any circus skill out there,” she added. “ We’ll be able to host performers and circus companies and educational conferences and circus festivals.”
On hand to endorse the project were Vermont governor Peter Shumlin and Jeff Lewis former executive director of the Brattleboro Development Credit Corp, which suggests the project has strong support from both government and local business, hopefully presaging its ultimate success.
Oakland’s Kinetic Arts Center to Stage New Show
Inversion: Circus Disobedience, its creators say is a unique, live professional circus/theatre production about circus, disobedience and justice. It is being produced by the same team that created last year’s successful production titled Salvage.
“The idea behind Inversion has always been about the human appetite for justice. A five-year old is already an expert on what is and what is not fair and instinctively wants life to be fair,” explains Jaron Hollander who conceived and directed the show with many of the same cast members from Salvage. “I have no political agenda here,” he insists. “I want to celebrate righteous indignation in every form. Circus artists are agents of change. We conform to nothing, not even gravity. We are the change we want to be, and you can change, too.”
Kinetic Arts Productions is unique in that it guides professional circus artists through an artistic development and rehearsal process that will yield wholly original content. “We started working this way in Salvage in 2015, creating a world-premiere theatrical circus production rather than a show created by piecing together circus acts.”
Jaron Hollander, Kinetic Arts Center’s artistic director, has performed with Cirque du Soleil and with Make “A” Circus. He and his clown partner Slater Penney have performed their Submarine Show all over the world. They won the 2011 San Francisco’s Fringe Festival’s Best of Fringe Award for their performance which the San Francisco theatre critic Robert Hurwitt called “An inspired 35 minutes of madcap physical comedy and vocal sound effects by two first-class clowns.”
Inversion will enjoy a seven week run beginning November 5 in downtown Oakland at the Kinetic Arts Center, 785 7th St. To learn more about the show visit www.KineticArtsProductions.com