A Moment of Circus in Chicago - CircusTalk

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A Moment of Circus in Chicago

In a couple of weeks, both circus artists and circus fans in Chicago are going to be privvy to a different kind of festival–a circus festival that breaks down the 4th wall and invites participation and collaboration on many levels. A festival that values the process as much as the product and the people as much as the art form. Perhaps this focus on being part of the experience is why it’s called Moment. It didn’t come a moment too soon either, but just in the wake of the announcement that the Chicago Contemporary Circus Festivalwould not run for a second year due to funding issues. So, a small group of the circus artists decided to put together a more grass roots kind of event. Schools, shows, performers, multi-disciplinary artists, workshops and several circus institutions like Aloft and MSA & Circus Arts are just the tip of the Chicago circus spring thawing iceberg. I had the pleasure to interview one of Moment’s founders, Courtney Prokopas about how Moment is organized and how to get involved.
It’s something that is a bit of an artist’s response to a number of setbacks (and I’m using air quotes there) to the circus community in the US right now.  How did the concept for Moment emerge? It’s something that is a bit of an artist’s response to a number of setbacks to the circus community in the US right now. The closing of Ringling Bros., the bankruptcy of the Big Apple Circus, and Chicago Contemporary Circus Festival deciding to close up shop for example. The American circus community is feeling a bit lost. I’m someone who is aggressively positive. So when faced with a number of setbacks, I think let’s just come together and make. Let’s try as a group collectively to make a space for ourselves to create rather than wait for someone to offer us a place to perform or a company to work for. That’s where the idea of a catalyst comes from. Moment circus is about catalyst and celebration. It’s not necess...
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Kim Campbell

Kim Campbell has written about circus for CircusTalk.News, Spectacle magazine, Circus Now, Circus Promoters and was a resident for Circus Stories, Le Cirque Vu Par with En Piste in 2015 at the Montreal Completement Cirque Festival. They are the former editor of CircusTalk.News, American Circus Educators magazine, as well as a staff writer for the web publication Third Coast Review, where they write about circus, theatre, arts and culture. Kim is a member of the American Theater Critics Association.