Join the Circus… See the World… Or, Tate’s First Trip on a Plane

In August, thirteen members of Circus Mojo had a three-week international exchange in Southwest Germany with Circus Pimparello, a German youth circus that has been a partner for nearly ten years. Our troupe learned, taught and performed alongside Circus Pimparello in a variety of venues from outside the Stuttgart Opera House to inside the CircArtive House at their headquarters. Tate, a fourteen-year-old girl who attends Ludlow High School, was part of our troupe. Here is her story:

When I joined Circus Mojo in my Ludlow neighborhood three years ago,  after-school on Saturdays and over summer camp, I had no idea that the circus would give me such amazing experiences or take me to such amazing places like Germany.

Tate wire

Before this summer, I had never flown in a plane, let alone flown in a plane out of the country. My first flight was thrilling!

Tate on Plane

It was nothing like I had imagined. I felt both nervous and excited as we took off. The turbulence was better than expected but sometimes scary, especially when the plane would turn on an angle. From my window seat, I saw the sun set and rise and reflect off the Atlantic. I saw hills, fields and cities: Cincinnati, New York and Stuttgart (even Ludlow).

My favorite part of the flight was passing through clouds and seeing snowflakes form on the window.  I took some great pictures though with a fancy camera my sister let me borrow for the trip.I even videotaped the takeoff and landing!


Once I arrived in Germany, the real fun started. I learned to lie down on the tightwire and get back up without placing my hands on the wire or using them to balance. I also learned to ride a unicycle backwards and had the chance to work on the diabolo, trapeze, rolla bolla and German wheel.

On our last day at Circus Pimparello, I performed on the silks, unicycle and Tightwire. I even used a GoPro while performing on the silks, but as I did my drop, the GoPro flew off my head and landed on the mat below. Despite this mishap, this was my best performance.

Tate Stuttgart opera

One of my best days at Circus Pimparello was “American Day.” We had a big brunch, relaxed, played games and, top on the list, ate hamburgers made by Pauly and Jesse, a former Circus Mojo staff member who now lives in Germany. All the Germans made us Americans feel special. I am so happy for the friends and memories I made on this trip.

Screen Shot 2014-09-17 at 4.27.26 PMTate is a participant in the Circus Scholastics Program,  a free after school program offering circus training and homework help to youth in Ludlow, KY.  We have created the Social Circus Foundation INC a registered  non-profit 501c3 arm to raise funds to support kids like Tate.

Linking circus training and goals for higher education: Read about Tate’s trip sponsored by the Social Circus Fund to visit Illinois State University.  Thanks to Nena Woo, a first generation college grad, who apprenticed with the circus in Ludlow.

Cirque du Soleil has donated 100 tickets to Varekai at the Bank of Kentucky Center on 10.17.2014 at 7:30pm. 100% of the proceeds will support the  Circus Scholastics Program.  Click to purchase tickets or to make a donation.



Filed under Backstage Stories

4 responses to “Join the Circus… See the World… Or, Tate’s First Trip on a Plane

  1. Pingback: A Year of Service, Wire Walking as Community Development | Social Circus Foundation INC

  2. Pingback: Bringing the World to Ludlow | Social Circus Foundation INC

  3. hi this is a nifty site that you have, thank you 4 sharing it with us.

  4. Pingback: Tate’s Story: Germany 2016 | Circus Mojo Foundation

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