Circus Smirkus pitching tent in town

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This year’s theme for the Circus Smirkus Big Top Tour will have people looking up, the Freeport coordinator says.

“Up, Hup and Away! The Invention of Flight,” will be performed four times at the Maine Coast Waldorf School, on Tuesday and Wednesday, Aug. 2 and 3, with matinees at 1 and evening shows at 6. The 1 p.m. Tuesday show in the Big Top tent, which seats up to 780 people, already is sold out.

“You’re going to see a lot of circus skills that are up in the air. There will be aerials, acrobatics, wire walking, unicycles and more. They have amazing costumes that add to the flight theme. Even the jugglers and clowns will carry the theme,” said Mary Martin, the Circus Smirkus events coordinator at the school.

Maine Coast Waldorf School’s own Sarah Norden, in her second year on the Big Top Tour, will be front and center on some of the aerial acts, especially on her lyra, a circular device hanging from the ceiling. Norden, a senior, is one of 30 performers ages 11-18 who are in the show.

“She’s in her second year now so you’ll see her front and center,” Martin said. “She’s considered a veteran now.”

Norden said she will be more at ease performing before the home folks this time around.

“Because this is my second year on tour I am able to relax and focus on enjoying the moment,” she said. “In this year’s show I am clowning more, which is a rewarding challenge that has helped me to grow as a performer. I enjoy making people laugh.”

Maine Coast Waldorf School, with help from the community, makes it possible for children who otherwise would not be able to pay for tickets to attend the shows.

“At matinees,” Martin said, “people are subsidized by sponsors for children who otherwise would be unable to attend. The Magic Matinee program, the Make-A-Wish family and Big Brothers/Big Sisters all help. We’d like to see the community in the surrounding area come out, as well.”

Sarah Norden, a senior at Maine Coast Waldorf, will perform when Circus Smirkus comes to the Freeport school.

A closer look

“Up, Hup, and Away! The Invention of Flight,” the Circus Smirkus 2016 show, will be performed at 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. on Aug. 2 and 3, at Maine Coast Waldorf School, 57 Desert Road in Freeport. Tickets, at $18-$21, are available at Royal River Natural Foods in Freeport, or online at www.smirkus.org. For more information, call 865-3900, ext. 113.