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Running Away with the Circus

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Preview: Run Away

Members of the Big Apple Circus cast and crew tell why they joined the circus life.


The late, great American electric guitarist Jimi Hendrix put the sentiment best when he said, "If I'm free, it's because I'm always running." There's something raw and rousing about leaving behind the prosaic details of life, throwing your fate in with the gypsy-hearted and grabbing a ride out of town in a circus trailer.

"As long as you do the job, no one cares about your background; no one wants to know the rest of your story," Circus Historian and Author Dominique Jando says of life under the big top. "What other people think doesn't matter so much."

Indeed, the circus is a world grounded in the right here and now. Is the tent up and sturdy? Are the trapeze flyers nailing the triple somersault? Do the clowns know their cues? Here, under the big top, ankle-deep in popcorn kernels and sawdust, is where a new itinerant existence begins. And no one needs to know the rest of your story.

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When the big top pops up in your hometown, are you ever tempted to run away with the circus?

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