August 27 2012
Ever wonder how entertainers learn to juggle or walk on stilts? What about making balloon animals or spinning plates on sticks? For most people, they can only learn those feats on-the-job.
But there's a place in Milwaukee where kids and adults can learn from a pro. It's the Milwaukee Community Circus, and Gypsy Geoff is the master professor.
His real name is Geoff Marsh, and he's been showcasing his circus skills in front of audiences for more then 10 years. He provides private and group classes, teaching circus skills to kids and adults.
"It's great because it's in such a wonderful world where their imagination can play and be free. And they also feel safe about being weird and just having fun," Marsh said.
From stilt walking, magic, clowning and mime, to juggling, makeup and physical comedy, the Milwaukee Community Circus has a class for every skill level and age. But Marsh says there's more to it than learning how to balance a peacock feather. Especially for kids with special needs.
"We want to teach kids how to unplug and play," he said. "We want everyone to know that if you have those learning disabilities, that A.D.D. can be a gift. As long as you can find something to captivate their attention," Marsh said.
And learning circus skills, he says, can be a great way to snag their attention.
Marsh doesn't just teach the skills, he practices them professionally. You may have seen his this summer at the Renaissance Faire or Summerfest, or at a variety of local festivals. (You think finding a job in your field is hard... try being a professional circus performer.)
Want to become a master juggler? Visit the official website of the Milwaukee Community Circus to see what classes are available.