Circus News

PRO Exclusive 360 Degrees: Raising Up

With our video interview series called 360 Degrees: Circus Through a Holistic Lens with Stacy Clark, we share professional development tools around the concepts of coaching, casting and career with our PRO Subscribers. Stacy Clark is the host of this exciting new video interview series which will provide a deep dive into the world of elite athletes and performers while tying in the practical tools she provides with her holistic approach to coaching. Stacy has years of experience in the industry working with artists and industry leaders from around the world and her work has been instrumental in shaping the contemporary circus landscape.

In episode 6, I speak with Stella Umeh, the founder and creator of The Ivory Elephant Group. Known as one of the most prolific gymnasts in Canadian history, Stella Umeh championed the stage of gymnastics with several stints at the Commonwealth Games, World Championships, and a trip to Barcelona for the 1992 Olympic Games. Stella wrapped up her international career with a college career at UCLA as a ten-time All-American and NCAA Champion, leading her to her 2012, UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame induction. Stella has worked on stage, television and film, including 13 years on tour with Cirque du Soleil”s Varekai. She has also worked behind the scenes as choreography assistant and artist integration supervisor. A jack of all trades, Stella is a yoga and wellness teacher and devoted mom. ...

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Stacy Clark

A former gymnast and professional circus performer, Stacy worked in marketing and communications before leaving it all behind to perform and teach circus around the world on stage, at festivals and on screen. Stacy is co-founder of Creative Athletic Performance, a consulting service specializing in casting, coaching and creation. She also teaches career development and act development to the next generation of circus artists training at San Diego Circus Center. Until 2020, Stacy was the Director of Casting at Cirque du Soleil, leading a team of international talent scouts and advisors. Stacy's journey at Cirque du Soleil began in 2007 when she joined the Casting department as a Talent Scout, recruiting athletes and circus artists for the company’s shows worldwide. In 2011 she became Acrobatic Coach on Amaluna, touring North America. Stacy holds a Bachelor of Applied Arts from Ryerson University and a Leadership diploma from Concordia University. She is a certified yoga teacher, nutrition coach, NASM performance enhancement specialist and CrossFit level 1 and CrossFit Kids trainer. “I believe in safe, open learning environments, and cultivating a sense of agency in students, athletes and artists. Excellence in human performance begins with being an excellent human.”