Category Archives: Germany

Joey’s Story: Germany 2016

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In 2012 Joey met Circus Mojo as a patient at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in the waiting room of Orthopaedics, where he learned a few tricks and convinced his amazing mom to let him join the circus. Fast forward four years . . . Joey is  out of Ortho and on tour with us in Germany. 

I loved my visit to Germany with Circus Mojo and Pimparello. This was my first time out of the country and only my second time on an airplane. I was so excited when the creators of Mojo and Pimparello invited me on this trip. I spent the summer training, preparing and saving money for this amazing experience. It was worth every bit of hard work.

I had so much fun at Pimparello and learned a lot of new skills and tricks. I loved the training and getting to learn new styles and arts I had never seen or had the opportunity to learn in America. I especially liked learning the European style of juggling, which is much more energized than American juggling. I enjoyed seeing the landscape and scenery of the beautiful country and I made plenty of friends over there. I loved learning how to do two diabolos and learning how to juggle four balls.

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I loved performing with Pimparello in multiple beautiful locations in Germany. We visited two waterparks and major cities like Stuttgart. We got to try German food and drinks. Everything there was carbonated, even the water. We tried many German candies. My favorite was Milka Milka Oreos, which is a chocolate bar with Oreos in it. What we call a Milky Way Bar is called a Mars Bar in Germany.joey-6

Germany is much cleaner than America. It was rare to see litter or gum on the ground. It was cooler there but it made it easier to perform since you did not sweat as much. I will definitely take warmer clothes though if I get the opportunity to go back since it would get really cool while sleeping in the tent.

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I made incredible friendships with the Americans I traveled with, as well as the Germans, refugees and people from all over the world who I met. I learned a little bit of the German language and experienced a lot of the culture.

Overall my trip to Germany was amazing and educational, not only in circus arts but in culture. I would love to go again in two more years and do it all again.

Visit Joey’s blog to learn more about his experience with Circus Mojo at Cincinnati Children’s.

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George’s Story: Germany 2016

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George is a freshman at Thomas B. Doherty High School in Colorado Springs and a fifteen-year-old acrobat whose dynamic  flips wowed the crowds in Germany. He traveled with us as a guest artist from Salida Circus. Billed as “Colorado’s most unique circus troupe,” Salida Circus has a professional troupe along with social circus outreach development, which makes them a perfect partner for both Circus Mojo and Circus Pimparello.

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When my boss, Jennifer, from Salida Circus got the text from Paul about Germany, I wasn’t sure how to feel. I was hesitant to join a Kentucky circus that was a three-hour flight from my home and then take another flight to Europe. Getting the chance to go to Germany was amazing, though, even if I was nervous.

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It was a pain in the butt getting to Germany, yet it all paid off in the end. I improved my ball juggling and tumbling and matured quite a bit. A few of my funniest stories have come from this trip, ranging from getting a bad haircut to slipping in the mud and accidentally eating some. The point is that not only does the trip here benefit my skills, my trade,and my maturity but it also has taught me important values and life lessons, all while having fun.

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What I’ve noticed about Circus Mojo and Circus Pimparello members is that all of them are young people who are getting the opportunities they need to work and learn in an expressive outlet–CIRCUS! This is a rarity in today’s world. I’m glad to be a part of such an important project and hope to participate again.    

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Tate’s Story: Germany 2016

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Tate is a Ludlow native who is now living and learning in Germany thanks to a decade-long partnership between Circus Mojo and Circus Pimparello. Starring and performing with us since 2010, she received the opportunity to study abroad for the next year at the CircArtive School. While her Kentucky peers have been in school a month, Tate started back to school this week. We miss her but know this milestone is simply wonderbar! 
It feels so good to be back in Germany! It feels like I never left in some ways, yet at the same time, it brings back memories I had forgotten. Now that I’m older and more mature, I have a better understanding of life in Rappenhof and the way Circus Pimparello works. I also have met many different kinds of people.
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A “vintage” shot of Tate’s many talents.

This year contrasts with the  last trip because there are about 15 refugees who are teenage boys living here along with the performers and visiting families. Most of the refugees don’t know anything about circus, which makes them unlike the rest of us but really great to work with since they have a completely different view than most circus performers.
Working with the refugees was difficult at first. For example, in wire walking class, they’d stand off to the side, not wanting to get on the wire. Once you’d tell them to give it a try, they’d take about two steps before giving up. That’s if they came to class. Most days I had to go up to their cabin and bring them to class.

 

Eventually I decided to try a new approach by showing off my tricks and then letting them try. I wanted to challenge them. When I knew they were watching, I’d perform a trick on the wire and wait for them to take a turn. We’d go back and forth like this until they started to actually try to walk the wire. After trying and failing a few times, the refugees pointed out my fancy wire shoes, letting me know they didn’t have good  shoes and suggesting this was the reason I could do more. So, I took off my shoes and did the same tricks barefoot.

 

This made the refugees more determined than ever. They’d closely watch my tricks and almost push me off the wire for their turn. They’d ask me to show my trick again and again, and they’d try and try until they got it. It was amusing to see them all flop and flail around trying to jump and do rolls over the wire.
As I was teaching them, they taught me too. I learned a lot about them without even talking and how to communicate and work with someone who doesn’t speak your language. Now I see them as friends, not the sad refugees some made them out to be. [Coincidentally, Pauly suggested referring to this group not as refugees but as “friends from other nations.”]
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Tate showing off her “barefoot” skills with Circus Mojo for the 2015 Major League Baseball All Star Celebration

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