Shakespeare asked, "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" Here at the Aerial Angels, we have trouble comparing most anything to a summer's day. What can compare to skinny-dipping in a Croatian national park? Turning fifty-three Floridians into circus stars? Finding your skin in the silks in London, Ontario?
Shakespeare warned, "Summer's lease hath all too short a date." So enjoy, friends! We will.
-The Aerial Angels
Angels in Europe
Ask Isabella, Mimi, and Anthony about their recent tour of Eastern Europe and you'll hear them talk about a van covered in AstroTurf (see above). You'll also hear about the cobblestone streets. The warm audiences. The talented colleagues. Camaraderie, connection, and early morning swims in the Adriatic sea.
Isabella says, "Here I was sitting on a restaurant patio in Kosovo, listening to our waiter tell us about hiding from snipers while separated from his family for six months, when he was fourteen, ten years ago. We did acro so that he could see some of the show, and he and the other waiters brought us free champagne and dessert. Kosovo is the youngest country in Europe and everyone there is so glad to be alive! There's a tremendous amount of positive energy."
For Anthony, the highlight of the tour was "jumping a fence, hiking through the woods, and illegally skinny dipping in KRKA national park in Shibenik, Croatia!" Sorry, ladies and gentlemen. Pictures not attached.
Starfish in Florida
It's 6am in Michigan. The big rental van is loaded with equipment and coaches. Next stop: sunny Florida. In just five days, the Ocala Civic Theater will be transformed into a kid circus...again!
Colleen "Mango" McIntee, Aerial Angel and experienced Starfish Circus coach, speaks of her experience. "It was so fun to see repeat campers take on leadership roles during the week, already passionate about the program. We were once again delighted with the Ocala Civic Theatre Staff, and their outstanding help throughout the week. Seeing everything come together for the shows was incredibly moving, and the kids (and the coaches...) loved the dance party finale!"
Six Questions with...Erin Clark
Erin Clark met the aerial silks last month. And just like that, they're skin.
The rendezvous occurred at Practice Loft studio in London, Ontario, where Erin also met the Aerial Angels. Working with Heather Hargraves of Practice Loft, the Angels offered a weekend of silk and acro-yoga workshops.
"My body just knows those silks somehow," says Erin. "It feels so possible. It helped that our three teachers were nothing but encouraging and willing to push me to strive for something just somewhat outside my reach. I can't get enough now, and every day I figure out something new I can do, and it's all over me now like a new skin - I want to show off to everybody all the time, this new and amazing thing I can do."
What you don't hear Erin saying is that she climbs out of a wheelchair and onto the silks. When I ask her about her condition, she replies matter-of-factly, "One of my favorite things about those workshops was no one asked because it didn't matter - what could I do? That mattered - I feel like that's a better representation of what it feels like to be me than a medical term no one understands anyway."
1. How do you feel when you're up in the air?
I have always found pleasure in moving my body and feeling its strength, agility, the nuances of it's motions. In the air, that pleasure is exquisitely enhanced. I feel a balancing out between my warring selves - passion and discipline. Sometimes sensual, other times hilariously awkward. I feel fear and weakness and frustration and pain. But mostly, I feel joy. Happiness courses through me like blood. I am lost in the play of it all.
2. What was your favorite toy as a child?
My favorite toy as a child were jungle gyms and the monkey bars. I also enjoyed climbing people. I was intoxicatingly happy to climb all over the Aerial Angels in a totally socially acceptable format.
3. What do you do?
When I am not in the silks I often immersed in my work as a therapist. The mysteries in our struggles to connect to each other and to ourselves compel me. I love people and I love life and both are achingly complex.
4. Do you have a hidden talent?
I think the silks are my hidden talent. Although not very well hidden since I gleefully plaster my practicing all over the internet.
5. What three words would your friends use to describe you?
I took a Facebook poll. There was a consensus on 'fearless,' several variations on the theme of 'unique' and a single but persistent vote for 'sexysilkilicious.'
6. When you're on the road what do you miss most?
I love to travel and I love my stuff. So it's unpredictable. One time I'll miss my pets, another time I'll miss a very particular book or picture I have on a wall or a shirt I didn't bring. Sometimes, I don't miss anything at all.
Upcoming Workshops in North Carolina
The Aerial Angels will be in and around Spike's town of Raleigh, North Carolina the week of August 23rd. If you're interested in learning to move like the Angels and you're close(ish) to the Asheville and Raleigh areas, email Chelsea@angelsintheair.com for details!