The Circus Ring of Fame Foundation® and CircusTalk are happy to announce the finalists for the CircusTalk Members’ Voice Award.
CircusTalk and the Circus Ring of Fame® Foundation partnered up to launch the first-ever CircusTalk Members’ Voice Award as part of the Circus Ring of Fame® Foundation’s annual Inductee Ceremony. The Members’ Voice Award recognizes a circus artist whose work demonstrates courageous expression, social relevance, and artistic and technical acumen.
The five finalists were selected from 25 artists that the CircusTalk community nominated this fall.
The nominating committee included a wide range of acclaimed circus arts professionals from diverse sectors: Bill Powell, Charles Batson, Cyrille Roussial, Emily Scherb, Jasmine Straga, Johnathan Lee Iverson, Lena Köhn, Morgan Barbour, Pedro Reis, Shenea Stiletto Booth, Stacy Clark, Thomas Chambers, and Thomas Lengart.
The 2023 CircusTalk Members’ Voice Award Finalist Nominees are:
Chloé Moglia (France)
Chloé Moglia integrates her practice of martial arts into her artistic journey and through her work, develops a unique exploration of suspension. Defending an embodied thought as well as a sensitive corporeality, she strives to unleash acuity by linking physical practice, reflection, and sensitivity.
Chloé confronts her relationship with weightlessness and the void in multiple aerial experiments. Her solo or collective creations generate meaning and play with bodies, slowness, the laws of physics, and vertigo. Summoning both fear and a taste for risk as the basis of her shows and performances, she exhibits a staggering mastery that speaks just as much of fragility.
Chloé has been the artistic director of Le Rhizome since its emergence in 2009.
Diana Salles (Brazil)
Salles, a proud trans woman, started her circus journey at the Escola de Circo e Artes Culturais in Brazil and later graduated from the Superior School of Circus Arts (ESAC) in Brussels, where she specialized in and developed her own style of aerial silks.
Following her graduation in 2018, Diana won multiple awards with her finishing piece Genèse, including the bronze medal and the “Prix de la Ville de Paris” at the 40th Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain in Paris, and the silver medal and Audience’s prize at the Iberoamerican Circus Festival (FIRCO) in 2019. Diana also won the Colombino prize at the 2021 Young Stage Festival for her “Symposium Performance.”
Diana’s original act creations evolve around the topic of exploring transsexuality and love in a changing world.
Shenea Stiletto Booth (USA)
Shenea is a true renaissance woman of her time. In addition to enjoying an outstanding performance career, Shenea is a strong voice for social activism including equity and inclusion. She shares her knowledge and experience through her podcast Live Like an Acrobat and her CircusTalk Original series Think Like an Acrobat.
Shenea is a two-time World Champion gold medalist in acrobatic gymnastics, a USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame member, and a World Acrobatic Society inductee. She has appeared in Varekai by Cirque du Soleil and OhLaLa by Knie Circus, and on the stages of The Palazzo Amsterdam, Palazzo Saarbruken, The Apollo Theater, Circus Roncalli, Germany’s and America’s Got Talent, Dancing with the Stars, and many more.
Her solo cane performance offers a sensually infused dynamic that intertwines agility and strength with innovative choreography and a rich musical background.
Veronica Blair (USA)
Veronica is an artist whose strengths reach far beyond the stage and into the heart of the circus and entertainment community. She has studied with some of the most celebrated and prominent artists in her field, including trapeze great LaNorma Fox, Ringling Bros.’ first African-American aerialist Pa-Mela Hernandez, and the renowned “God Father of the Tissu” Gérard Fasoli of Centre National des Arts du Cirque (CNAC.)
Veronica started her acrobatic career at the age of 14; her first professional performance was at the age of 17, making her one of the youngest professional African-American trapeze artists in the U.S. Veronica was then selected by Cedric Walker, founder of UniverSoul Circus, as a single trapeze artist and worked with the company for five years. She has since performed around the globe with AntiGravity, Universal Studios Japan, Warner Bros. Music, and “AFRIKA! AFRIKA!”, and was the lead aerialist in KAMAU’s “BooDha” music video.
Beyond performing, Veronica launched “The Uncle Junior Project” in 2010. The ongoing documentary shines a light on the careers of African-American circus performers, including Emanual “Uncle Junior” Ruffin, who remained largely uncredited for his contributions to American Circus until after his death. In 2017, she was invited to speak at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival about her experience as producer and director of “The Uncle Junior Project” and served as organizer and moderator on a panel highlighting the African-American circus experience. Veronica also worked with the African-American Art and Culture Complex to stage Entrapment to Entertainment: A Celebration of Blacks in American Circus.
Wellington Lima (Brazil)
Wellington Lima aka Palhaçada, born and raised in Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil, is an inspirational artist who has journeyed through various acrobatic fields, including capoeira, gymnastics, trampoline, as well as performing, social outreach, and spreading his knowledge of life. Wellington has been a longtime performer at Cirque du Soleil, contributing to shows such as La Nouba, Dralion, Viva Elvis, and MJ ONE.
Alongside his performing career, Wellington makes time to reconnect with his roots, inspiring youth through the Cirque du Monde social outreach program. Wellington enjoys encouraging people to develop body and mind awareness through acrobatic movement and especially his first love of capoeira.
Voting for the 2022 recipient of the CircusTalk Members’ Voice Award is open until December 16, 2022.
>>> VOTE HERE <<<
The winner will be presented at the Class of 2023 Circus Ring of Ceremony in the Circus Sarasota Big Top located at Nathan Benderson Park Regatta Center on February 4, 2023....