It has been a sad week for the circus world in the DMV, as we lost one of our brightest stars. As a community, we tend to be pretty good at chasing our dreams on this earth. This is another reminder that each day of this journey is a gift. Hold dear those who nurture your dreams, and seek out those who just need a little spark to feed their imagination.
IN MEMORIAM — ACOATZIN TORRES
Acoatzin Torres passed away on Saturday, October 23.
In 2016, Acoatzin founded the aerial studio Monarca in Flight in Falls Church, Va., building their aerial program from the ground up. Acoatzin did much of his aerial training at the New England Center for Circus Arts in Brattleboro, Vermont, gaining a deeper understanding of aerial fabric, sling, lyra, trapeze and rope.
His upbringing in Tabasco, Mexico, exposed him to many different styles of dance — especially Mexican Folk Dance — and led him to dance professionally in his home country.
Acoatzin’s study of fashion design influenced the beautiful costumes he wore while performing aerial arts across the United States, and at his studio in Virginia, where he performed alongside his beloved students and staff earlier this month.
Monarca in Flight‘s namesake — the monarch butterfly — captures Acoatzin’s feeling that aerial arts are an embodiment of grace — of dancing freely through the air.
Acoatzin’s husbands B. Keith and Chris are thankful for the outpouring of love and support they have received in the past week. In lieu of flowers, they recommend paying tribute to Acoatzin’s life by supporting your favorite local businesses at this time.
***Stay safe, and know before you go! Be sure to check out each venue’s Covid safety regulations prior to attending in-person events.
October 29 – November 7
- BrouHaHa by Happenstance Theater returns to the Baltimore Theatre Project to delight audiences with an existential, apocalyptic work of ensemble comedy genius. This production takes cues from Fellini’s La Strada, Bergman’s The Seventh Seal, and the works of Samuel Beckett. Get tickets at this link.
- Dr. Sketchy’s Anti Art School returns to the Creative Alliance in Baltimore at 7 p.m. This unique evening of community art slash performance spotlights fabulous burlesque performer Bebe Bardot as the muse for your own drawings. Sip on a delicious cocktail as you create your masterpiece. Remember to bring your own drawing materials and cash tips for the model. Get tickets at this link.
November 18 – January 9
- Omnium: A Bold New Circus lands in Tysons III for a long run of shows under the big top featuring a diverse and multi-abled cast of circus artists performing in an accessible environment. This production emerged in quarantine as a critically acclaimed virtual spectacle. The live version will offer ADA seating, audio description, braille and large print programs, integrated ASL interpreters, a calming area in the lobby, STEAM based study guides and more! Get tickets at this link.
- As circus performers, we treasure the props, costumes and other personal items that make our shows possible. Consider supporting local burlesque performer Eva Mystiqueat this time, as someone recently broke into her car and stole her suitcase full of costumes and a valuable makeup case. Visit her website to book her to perform or rent time in her studio. Alternatively, you can use her Venmo or CashApp to help her recoup her losses.
- Local fire performer and entrepreneur Shavaun Hairston is currently seeking a Client Relationship Manager for her fire troupe Pyroxotic. If you’re interested, contact her through Pyroxotic’s website or through Shavaun’s Instagram page.
- The Mt. Pleasant Lantern Walk will take place at 5:30 p.m. to mark the end of Daylight Saving Time. Circus artists are most welcome to parade with the group, which includes other local visual artists and musicians. LED props are encouraged — just no fire. The 1.3-mile stroll through the woods departs at 5:45 p.m. from Lamont Plaza. Find out more, and learn how to make your own lantern on the walk’s website.
- The American Circus Alliance is hosting a joint workshop with ACE/AYCO about all things insurance — for circus schools, companies and individuals. The workshop will start at noon EST. Register for free at this link.
- The 2021 Circadium Gala will be an in-person spectacle to behold this year, with proceeds supporting the first and only diploma-granting institution of higher education for circus artists in the United States. Visit this link to donate and get a ticket. If you can make it to Philly, look forward to an action-packed evening including live performances on the ground and in the air accompanied by the West Philly Orchestra from 7-10 p.m. If you can’t make it in person, consider participating in the online silent auction happening live during the gala.
- Jugglers and flow artists have been meeting semi-regularly at Malcolm X Park in DC on Sunday afternoons (around 4 p.m.). Send unofficial organizer Dzhoy a message on Instagram if you’re thinking about heading over.
- The Baltimore Jugglers will meet from 6:30-9 p.m. at the Locus Point Recreation Center. Assuming good weather, the gathering will begin outside and then head indoors when it gets dark. Join the Baltimore Jugglers page on Facebook to be totally sure that meetings are happening each week.
- The UMD Juggling Club will meet outdoors on McKeldin Mall (or indoors in the Art/Sociology building) from 4-6 p.m. on Wednesdays and Fridays. All are welcome to attend. Join the club’s Facebook group for updates throughout the semester.
- The Fairfax Jugglers will meet on Thursdays from 7:30-10 p.m. in the Key Middle School cafeteria. Visitors must wear masks and sign a liability waiver. If you would like to help with the club’s newly required insurance expenses, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Sunset & Chill will host a fire jam at the Olde City Garden from 6-10 p.m. This is a free spin jam, but cash and fuel donations are accepted. Bring your own seat, food and drink — just no alcohol. Food vendors will include The Vurrito Spot and The Baking District. RSVP and learn more at the Facebook event page.
- Circadium is now accepting applications for Fall 2022 students. Visit this link to fill out the application for this three-year program, designed to bolster your movement and performance skills and prepare you for a professional career in circus arts The deadline to apply is January 31, 2022.
- Circus artists who identify as persons of color living in the U.S. can now apply for CSAW‘s December $1,000 microgrant. You can also consider applying for the upcoming tuition grant ($5,000), which can be used for any circus education related expenses. Find more information at this link.