In May 2017, after years of entertaining children of all ages, the curtain fell for the final time on the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. For UniverSoul founder and CEO Cedric Walker, it was a piece of news that still leaves a little hole in his big heart.
“To me, Ringling was as American as apple pie,” Walkers says quietly during a recent interview. “I grew up going to see them, so it really felt like a piece of me was gone. Each of us operated at the same time and we might have had a different audience, but we shared in our commitment to bring joy to people through circus arts. So yes, I found it hard to smile that day. It was sad.”
And while Walker says its impossible to not notice the void left behind as a result of Ringling’s unfortunate demise, it currently leaves UniverSoul Circus as the largest USA-based circus in operation. Walker says it’s a leadership role that they now relish.
“There was a time where I think we lost the artistry of the circus in general,” Walker reflects. “It had become more about the spectacle of it all. But now, I look forward to helping to provide all that a circus can be to a community and to a country and to the world.”
Fresh off its first European performances, UniverSoul Circus is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year…
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