Original Series ROUNDUP--Courageous Conversations

Circus News

Original Series ROUNDUP – Courageous Conversations About Mental Health in Circus

This week, we’re bringing you a CircusTalk Original Series ROUNDUP of Courageous Conversations About Mental Health in Circus with Janelle Peters. This series is accessible to all CircusTalk members and discusses the importance of addressing mental health and setting up sustainable practices for well-being in the performing arts industry. With a variety of topics and guests from professional roles in circus, sports and performing arts around the world, the series explores the unique strengths and challenges experienced by circus professionals when it comes to mental health and wellbeing. In the four episodes, Janelle and guests cover the following topics: Fostering Mental Well Being on Tour, Healthy Relationships with Substances, Marginalized Bodies in Circus, and Transparency and Safety around Sexual Harassment & Assault in Circus. If you are a creative or work with them, this series will be a valuable tool and conversation starter for your team and colleagues in the industry.

Episode 1: Best Practices for Fostering Mental Well Being on Tour & Stage
with guests Shenea Stiletto, Julian Frazier, and Brittany Urbain

Learn from the panel about healthy touring conditions and practices, sustaining relationships while on tour, knowing when it is important to reach out for help and how to establish boundaries on tour.

Episode 2: Healthy Relationships with Substances–Addressing Addiction in Circus
with guests David Resnick and Waverly Jones

Listen to this transparent and raw conversation with David and Waverly, about what addiction looks like, how much of an issue addiction is for circus professionals, how working in circus can increase risk or increase protection from addiction, and how people struggling with addiction can get support.

Episode 3: Marginalized Bodies in Circus–Through the Lenses of Race, Size and Gender
with guests Alec Stoddard, Ginger Snaps, and Nina Sawant

Within the panel, the three cover a variety of topics, from what marginalization looks like inside and outside the circus industry, how these experiences have impacted their mental health, and what actions they need from circus and circus professionals to create a safer space for themselves and artists like them.

Episode 4: Transparency and Safety around Sexual Harassment & Assault in Circus
with guests nisha ahuja and Violet Defiant Livingston

For what can be a loaded and strenuous topic, the three gracefully navigate the topic in a warm and transparent conversation. Listen as the group provides examples of what sexual harassment and assault can look like in a circus setting, unpacks the colonialist roots, challenges how these topics are treated within the industry, and suggests practices for overall cultural change and transformative change when harm has been done.


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