There’s lots that’s new under the Big Top.
By Kay Kipling
After nine years of performances by Circus Sarasota, you might be forgiven for thinking as you enter the Big Top that there’s really nothing new they can show you. But that illusion was quickly dispelled on opening night, with the first act, The Flying Pages, demonstrating the type of trapeze artistry that has kept the circus flying high for decades.
The Flying Pages are truly a family act, with tiny eight-year-old Mercedes and 16-year-old Anthony taking part in the daring midair catches and flips, and maybe knowing of that close family connection adds a little spice to the act. At any rate, it was a strong opener for the circus, eliciting the proper gasps from the audience as hands met high above the ground on perfectly timed trapeze swings.
Juggler Rafael DeCarlo, a native of Cuba, added humor as well as amazing skills to his act, fully utilizing his legs and head as well as his arms to keep those soccer balls in perpetual motion. And balancer Anait Seyranyan amazed with her ability not only to support her entire body on one strong hand but to make perfectly impossible stretches of the human body look painless and fluid. And of course Irina Markova’s canine act starring poodles in costumes was a crowd pleaser.
Rounding out the show (presented by ringmaster Cliff Roles) were Erika Zerbini’s liberty horse act, returning clowns Greg and Karen DeSanto, spring boarders The Trio James, acrobats Yeromenko, and perennial favorite Dolly Jacobs, soaring high with her aerial performance. It was a bit of a disappointment that announced quick-change artists the Sudarchikovs did not make an appearance on opening night (their costumes, a crucial element to their act, were stuck in Moscow, but are due to arrive so they will be in later performances). But overall the circus, under a new tent in a new location across from Ed Smith Stadium, was a lively and exciting entertainment. For ticket info call 355-9335 or go to www.CircusSarasota.org.