The American circus world lost a matriarch this month. Aurelia Canestrelli Nock grew up as part of Italy’s famous Canestrelli circus family and came to American at the age of 19 to join Ringling Brothers Circus with her family’s unsupported ladder act- where one uncle balanced a tall ladder on his feet as Aurelia and another uncle climbed up to do tricks on it. Growing up in a circus family, Aurelia performed many acts including acrobatics, low wire, aerials, and bareback riding!
Aurelia married Swiss swaypole artist, Eugene Nock and joined her husband’s family act, the Nerveless Nocks! They toured the US and the World and appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show with the Beatles. For 45 summers, The Nerveless Nocks performed with the Tommy Bartlett Water, Ski and Sky Show at Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin and Pigeon Forge Tennessee. After retiring, Aurelia served on the executive board of Sarasota’s Circus Ring of Fame, as a committee member for the John and Mable Ringling Circus Celebrity event, and on the induction council for the International Circus Hall of Fame at Peru, Indiana. Aurel...
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