One Performance Down…

2 05 2008

Criss Cross Circus performed at Amherst College the other night. It was our first official performance as a troupe, our first performance in our long line up of performances for our summer tour. I have a few comments about performances.

1. Being outside after the sun goes down is cold. I don’t care if it’s spring, it’s still cold. (Especially because we wear less clothes when we perform.)

2. Even if you don’t think you’re being impressive… people still think it’s impressive if they’ve never seen it before.

3. Free food is particularly good when your performing at an affluent college. (Seriously, disposable flute glasses for sparkling apple cider?)

4. It is quite thrilling to find your troupe’s name on a poster that you didn’t make.

5. It is also thrilling to be performing as a part of something larger (like a Summer Tour) and in hopes of making money.

Now that we have our bus and one performance down, I believe it is safe to say that this tour is officially under way! Visit our Criss Cross Circus blog for more details (and soon it will be updated from on the road) and make sure to check us out live if we’re in your area!

Advertisements

Actions

Information

7 responses

2 05 2008
pullacreep

Nice article. I spent a good part of my life on the circus, please check out the photographs of the circus on my website if you have a minute or two:

http://www.billpayne.wordpress.com

Warmest regards,

Bill

3 05 2008
Lindsay

Those are some beautiful photos! I am very intrigued by your time spent with the Circus… what was it like for you? It seems you held a variety of different jobs… how long were you with the Circus for? Our circus works on a -much- smaller scale for now, though who knows in the future?

Thanks for sharing those photographs with me! I’d love to hear more!

– Lindsay

3 05 2008
pullacreep

I guess I worked for the circus for about 20 years or so. I spent most of my time on Ringling Bros on both the Red and Blue Unit’s. The travel part and living on the Ringling Circus Train were the main attractions and also the people…a bunch of charactor’s (including myself). My first year was 1977 with Ringling and I was 23. I had no money at the time and I was a musician (saxophone player) living New York City and I got a chance to audition and I just went for it and through a stroke of luck got the gig. I didn’t have too much of a problem adjusting to the life and I made friends and found my little gang to hang out with…much like what you are doing with your friends. We partied and hung out. I found out that anything that I was interested in there was an individual or group that was into the same thing. Ringling Bros is a BIG circus, at that time there were about 250 employees (most living on the train) so you were like in a small travelling town and there was tons of things going on. Since we lived so close together and worked all day you would talk to people (no computers or cell phones in those days). There was a dining car (Pie Car) on the train where people would hang out after the show. My best friend, Dave King, was the keyboard player in the band and he was interested and enthusiastic in just about anything but his passion at the time was photography and he made me want to go and try to take pictures so I started to study with him. I am sort of rambling here and I am actually about ready to start my day job, feel free to contact me at pullacreep1@yahoo.com

So what do you like about the circus??? Have you seen very many? Which ones?

Best,

Bill

3 05 2008
pullacreep

Hi Lindsay,

I also worked in England with the Gerry Cottle Circus. My wife, Danise, who is a performer, was hired to do some publicity work for Gerry in 1997 and I played in the band, a trip of a lifetime. We were given an apartment to live in in Wembley (a small town outside of London). Working for Gerry Cottle (the owner of the show) was a true pleasure. He is sort of like a modern day P.T. Barnum and used all sorts of creative ways to drum up business. We were paid well and treated like Kings. We both worked for their Chrismas Gala. Most larger European circuses do their regular tours and then spend a month or so during the Christmas season in one place. Since my wife Danise was hired to do some of the publicity we got there about a month and a half before the gala started to help drum up business. The hours were long and it was really cold. My wife did 6 small shows a day in different facilities but we were in London so who cared. It was a truly festive time in London (Christmas). On Christmas Eve we had the day off and we went to Harrod’s Dept. Store (the most famous store in England) sort of like Bloomingdales in NYC and had a fantastic time.

Bill

4 05 2008
Lindsay

This sounds incredible, I definitely would love to talk with you more about all of this!

5 05 2008
pullacreep

Check out the early history of Cirque du Soleil, they sarted out much like you are. There are some smaller shows you also might want to google: Circus Smirkus, Make a Circus, Pickle Family Circus, Cullpepper-Merriweather Circus and UniverSoul Cirus. There are many more. Also there is a Circus Trade Magazine Titled “Circus Report.” It’s a small weekly publication that gives routes and information about shows here in the US.

Bill

5 05 2008
Lindsay

Thanks! Three of our performers have been involved in Circus Smirkus, actually. Two worked there and one went on tour. I shall check out the other circuses (I am particularly interested in the early history of Cirque du Soleil) as soon as possible. Thanks for the great information! If your interested, I hope you check out the Criss Cross blog – I know currently there isn’t a whole lot happening, but as soon as we tie up our loose ends here at school, I hope that many people update daily about our summer circus experience.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s




%d bloggers like this: