The UniverSoul Circus, now a fall tradition in Philadelphia, returns to Fairmount Park Oct. 24 - November 3, pitching its colorful big top tent at 52nd Street and Parkside Avenue, next to the Mann Center for the Performing Arts.
A family outing at the UniverSoul Circus is always a funky good time, and the 2012 North American Tour titled "US," kicked off in January in Tampa, followed by Miami, Atlanta, and "a host of other cities" including New York City and Washington, D.C., Detroit and Chicago before coming to Philadelphia. The international cast includes 80 world-class acrobats, contortionists, aerialists, martial artists, dancers, comedians, clowns, tigers, horses and elephants.
Ringmaster Tony Tone is no longer with UniverSoul, but Zeke, the beloved Little Guy, is still running the show, with a little help from his friends. The high-energy performance lineup features:
The Improv Troupe - Co-hosts
Onionhead, The Clown
Shaolin Kung Fu - Acrobats
Zhukau Acrobatics - Russian Swing
Transformers/Hip Hop Dancers
John Jairo - Tigers
Jean Claude - Aerial Ballet
Caribbean Dancers - Dance
Soul Circus Divas - Elephants
"At UniverSoul Circus, we're one big happy family - and that includes our fans," said Founder and President Cedric Walker. "Without you, there is no US. This year's production titled simply, yet profoundly, "US," includes 13 outstanding acts from Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas - all coming together to create an unforgettable global experience."
"It's phenomenal!" said UniverSoul Circus talent scout Angela Barrow-Dunlap, who is actively seeking new talent for the show, and will be holding open auditions under the Big Top on October 29, 30. "That's one of the reasons why it's such a challenge for us going into 2013, because this year's show is absolutely phenomenal! There's a lot of diversity in terms of talent, it's quick-moving - never a dull moment. It's absolutely a phenomenal show. I attended it in Detroit. I got all the highlights - the animal acts were there, and beautiful people! There are some pretty people in that circus this year!" If you'd like to get up close and personal with some of the pretty people in this highly interactive entertainment spectacle, show times are as follows:
Wednesday, Oct. 24 @ 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 25 @ 10:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Oct. 26 @ 4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Tuesday - Friday, Oct. 30 - Nov. 2 @10:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Saturdays@ 12 noon, 4 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Sundays @ 12:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
The UniverSoul Circus was founded by Cedric Walker in 1994, with the vision of exploring “the various talents other than singing and dancing that Black performers had to offer.” While the first show, held in the parking lot of Atlanta Fulton County Stadium “lost every penny,” the circus tour had grown to 10 cities by 1997, 19 cities in 1999, 31 cities in 2000, toured South Africa in 2001 – its first international destination, and was the subject of an Emmy nominated HBO special in 1998. In 2012, fans in 25 cities will have the opportunity to experience the sights, sounds and smells of the UniverSoul Circus.
For more information, show times and schedules visit www.universoulcircus.com. For tickets call (800) 745-3000 or visit www.ticketmaster.com. Children under one year old are admitted free.