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How do you teach a kid about the Krebs cycle in the mayhem of a circus? How do you keep a big top grounded during a wind storm? How do you stitch a leotard on the fly? For these Big Apple Circus professionals, it's just another day at the office. This office just happens to have majestic horses and trained dogs and trapeze artists whizzing by overhead.
Nguyen spends much of the 2008-2009 Play On! season tussling with the Big Apple Circus tents and keeping the Big Top in shape. He and his girlfriend, Sarah Schwarz, befriend mime Olivier Taquin, and Sergio spends much of his leisure time designing and creating a movable wooden mannequin named Olympia for Taquin.
Raul "La Luz" Lancheros
As a young teenager, Lancheros fell in love with the circus in his native country, Colombia, and he began his career as an aerialist. He left Colombia in 1962 to work for various productions in the United States, and he’s been a member of a circus show for more than 50 years. But a serious injury sidelined Lancheros from the trapeze, so he re-invented himself as the Master Electrician for the Big Apple Circus. His Spanish nickname, “La Luz” means “the light” in English. During the Play On! season, Lancheros again attempts to connect with his Colombian family after years of unsuccessful searching. This time, however, he makes contact with his younger sister, Maria.
Sanderson is a contract costume designer for the Big Apple Circus, and he works with the artistic director to conceptualize and develop appropriate, theme-oriented costumes for the circus artists. While the performers are training in Walden, New York, Sanderson works furiously to measure, trim, hem, and otherwise adjust the individual costumes to the specific physical needs of each artist.
Teacher, One Ring Schoolhouse
Singer tours with the Big Apple Circus for the 2008-2009 Play On! season as the sole teacher in the One Ring Schoolhouse, a traveling education program for the school-age children of the Big Apple Circus. She devises curriculum for each student, depending on his grade level and individual educational needs. At the end of the season, Singer leaves the Big Apple Circus to attend graduate school.