For generations, the circus has been a destination for family fun. Since the beginning days of the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey, fans have marveled at the acrobats, laguehd at the clowns, and delighted in seeing the exotic animals trot across the stage. Nowadays, the circus is so much more, including pyrotechnics, special effects, and more. And with the introduction of Cirque du Soleil, the game has changed completely to include much more divergent and creative experiences. The conceptual and artistic beauty of Cirque shows is all the rage, and they are wonders to behold with the whole family.
The circus began in England in 1768, when the first circus show was run by the father of the modern circus, a man by the name of Philip Astley. The early circuses were always equestrian shows, with riders showing their skills between other small acts. They grew to include theatrical battle reenacting (the grandfather of modern circus theatrics), and eventually other large animals—mainly elephants and big cats. These circuses with animal shows as their main draw debuted around the turn of the 20th century, including the famous Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey Circus which continues to this day.
Contemporary circuses, begun in the 1980s, however, are based almost solely on human skills. These shows include a variety of talented performers engaging in acrobatics, gymnastics, aerial acts, contortion, and other physical skills.
Most famous of these modern circuses is Cirque du Soleil, self-described as "a dramatic mix of circus arts and street entertainment." Each show combines circus styles from around the world with continuous live music to create a grand performance with its own central theme and storyline. The show is currently held permanently in Las Vegas, with 8 different shows held at various Hotel theaters. Versions of Cirque du Soleil are also consistently on tour, traveling to perform in cities worldwide. You can easily tell when the troupe is in town, with its traditional "big top" tents appearing in open areas. Once having financial troubles in its earlier years, the circus made a clear turn around in the 90s and has become the largest theatrical producer in the world, with 90 million people having experienced the shows worldwide.
Dubbed "The Greatest Show on Earth" the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus has been dazzling audiences with their one of a kind show for generations. There's a number of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus tours, including Built to Amaze, Legends and Super Circus Heroes, but the bottom line is that it's entertainment like you won't see anywhere else. If you like to see the wonder of human, and animal, performances, don't pass up a chance to see the circus in person.
Another circus currently performing shows is the UniverSoul Circus. They are performing right now in 9 cities nationwide, and are always moving. Branded as the #Best CircusEver, this act hopes to draw many different kinds of people to its performances. The venue holds not only the typical circus but also mini events such as House Party on Steroids! and Gospel Extravaganza. The show features both human talent and trained animal acts. And unlike some other animal-show circuses, the Universoul Circus has never been cited for animal abuse and is strongly opposed to any form of cruelty to animals.
There are various other circuses, including the not-for-profit Big Apple Circus, and the international youth circus, Circus Smirkus. Whether you’re looking for something to attend on your big trip, or an upcoming event near you, circuses are a surefire, family-friendly way to have fun. Look into tickets for a future show today, and plan your next great adventure!
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