Long Live the VIVA Fest: Vegas’ Biggest Circus Fling Sees 5th Edition
In less than a decade of life, the VIVA Fest (Vegas International Variety Act Festival) has turned into one of the most anticipated yearly events for circus professionals and aspiring performers alike. This year’s VIVA Fest will be bigger and better than ever before with nearly 500 competing acts, as well as workshops of all varieties, shows, and competitions.
Created in 2017, the VIVA Fest has seen steady growth since its inception and worked hard to establish itself as a safe, creative space to gather and celebrate the art of circus performance. This ever-evolving festival not only gives aspiring performers an opportunity to showcase their work, it also provides them a platform to get noticed by talent scouts.
Now entering its fifth edition, the VIVA Fest continues to support the circus community with more workshops, events, and performances, this year and in the years to come. Now the team behind the VIVA Fest is getting ready for a future event that looks brighter than ever, with a plan to expand the festival’s reach by welcoming more artists worldwide.
Keeping the rising stars of circus in mind, the VIVA Fest has created the Emerging Pro competition, which gives young artists the chance to be judged, critiqued, and potentially hired for upcoming events by casting agents from many of the nation’s largest companies. Companies like Cirque du Soleil, Spiegelworld, and America’s Got Talent will be on-site at this year’s event, judging and critiquing acts.
Cash prizes will also be offered for the winners of the World Circus Arts Championships, as well as scholarships, internships, and professional contracts for the top performers in the Professional, Emerging, and Student Competitions.
In all its facets, the VIVA Fest is dedicated to supporting the growth of the circus arts in Las Vegas and around the world. It puts great emphasis on professional enrichment through workshops, lectures, and presentations in order to further the advancement of the circus arts and circus artists alike.
This focus on professional development helps both experienced professionals looking to improve their skills, knowledge and business acumen, as well as beginners just discovering the world for the first time. Through workshops and lectures, artists will be able to make connections and discover new modes of performing while also participating in an open exchange of ideas that encourages inspiration and creativity.
Summing up the mission and future of the event, VIVA Fest Founder Mike Rice says, “We believe the cultural exchange taking place each year, with artists from different countries around the world, is an amazing opportunity for everyone to learn and embrace the diversity of circus and of life. In order to help support and encourage fledgling circus programs in third-world countries, we plan to introduce a sponsorship program that will provide them with the opportunity to attend the festival annually. This way, they can interact with other artists, develop their skills and connections in the industry, and benefit from grants awarded at the viva fest. We hope that such a program will help nurture new talent from struggling countries and contribute towards a brighter future for circuses around the globe.”
Source: Modified press release.
All images are copyright of photographer Mieke Schulz. Images shared by Mike Rice.