Congrats to the May #AYCOPhotoContest winner Sharon. For the last 12 years, Circus has given the opportunity to travel the world performing and teaching (46 countries) and I can truly say that Circus really is one big family & we don’t need to speak the same language to communicate & share our skills when we already speak circus.


  AYCO Monthly Newsletter

AYCO Youth Membership costs $35 per year and is for anyone 21 and under and college students who are passionate about circus arts. This is your chance to plug into the national circus community, network and show off  your circus pride.


Membership benefits include:

  • Surprise swag mailed to your door three times a year
  • Eligibility to perform in AYCO event showcases
  • Discounts on events and merchandise
  • Monthly email AYCOgram newsletter filled with circus opportunities, news, and videos just for you!

Want to join? Grab an adult and click the button below!

🤑 New Member Discounts

Hey AYCO Family, more exciting news! We just added another new discount to your membership perks! Our friends at Circus Boss are hooking you up with savings on business workshops! So if you’re looking to become a Confident Circus Entrepreneur then be sure to scroll down to the bottom of this email or check the Member Deals and Discount Center for details!


👥 Let’s Get Social!

Are you following us on social media? 👀 If not, hit that follow button so we can connect! We want to see more of you in our feed so we can send you social love and share your highlights, training gains, shows and more. You can follow us on our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages, where we like to keep you up-to-date with what’s going on in the world of circus, with our organization and members. Plus we like to share circus inspo, helpful resources and more. What are you waiting for? Click and connect!

Be sure to tag us using #AmericanYouthCircusOrganization and use our new hashtags: #WeCircusBetterTogether and #TheFutureIsCircus (You can follow these hashtags too!)


📅 EdCon 2022: Save the date!!

EdCon registration is LIVE and October will be here before you know it!  This years event will be held at Sky Candy in Austin, TX October 7-9th 2022! We are thrilled with the positive response as the circus community is already buzzing with excitement after such a long hiatus! We can’t wait to see you there!

This 3-day event is just what the circus world needs. Packed with workshops, discussions, private lessons, special learning opportunities and more, this is sure to be an event you don’t want to miss. Be sure to register and schedule your travel and lodging accommodations sooner rather than later to lock in the best rates and secure your spot.


We have made EdCon ticket pricing as accessible as possible – simply choose where you fall on the sliding scale. Please not that you must be an ACE member to attend, as EdCon is by and for the circus education community – and ACE membership is also priced on a sliding scale for accessibility and equity.


In addition to attending EdCon, there are a few other ways for you to get involved. We are looking for presenters and volunteers to help make this an experience to remember – applications for both are open until July 1, 2022.


⚠️ Just a heads up, EdCon is happening the same weekend as ACL (Austin City Limits – a huge music festival) and accommodations will both get booked up fast *and* be pricey if you wait. Check out our website to get our top tips on booking your accommodations. 


🗣️ ACE Discussion Series 2022

🗓 Tuesday July 12th, 2022: Shoulder Health

In this discussion, we’ll be diving into Myofascial release, mobility, and recovery for the shoulder. If you’ve ever experienced training setbacks due to shoulder injuries or immobility then this workshop is for you. We’ll briefly discuss the anatomy of the shoulder and move to the hands-on portion where we’ll practice evidence-based myofascial release, mobility, stability, and strengthening exercises.

It’s important you leave with the confidence and competence to immediately begin integrating this methodology and these techniques. This is why we’ll spend the remaining time discussing how you can transfer these new skills to your own training and self-care programs, as well as those of your students. 

The systems approach we will take stems from our research-based, internationally-known RAD Mobility Continuum, which is also present in our Healthy Shoulders programming available online.

Equipment needed: (use discount code RADCIRCUS15% for 15% off one order)

RAD Rounds, Point Release Kit, or tennis ball and yoga block
Light resistance band
RAD Rod or stick

Upcoming ACE discussions to add to your calendar:

🗓 Tuesday September 13th, 2022: Substance Use, Misuse, and Abuse

🗓 Tuesday November 8th, 2022: Opening and Closing Routines for Inclusive Circus Practice


About the ACE Discussion Series:

The American Circus Educators Association is excited to present a bimonthly online discussion series for continuing education and professional development for circus educators. Each session is based on a particular topic and facilitated by a community expert in that topic!


Attendance is FREE to current ACE/AYCO members.
Non-members pay a small sliding-scale fee, $5-20.
Space per session is limited.


Sessions are one hour long, every other month on the second Tuesday, at 12pm Eastern Time/11am Central Time/10am Mountain Time/9am Pacific Time. The sessions are not recorded, in order to create a space where attendees are comfortable participating fully in discussion – though some of the facilitator’s introduction may be recorded and made available to registrants after the session. Check out the upcoming events below!

New Hup Squad Blog Posts

Our HUP Squad has been hard at work this month, and have written four new blog posts with helpful and insightful circus information. Take a read! And be sure to share with a circus friend!  


Learn more about the nuts and bolts of Aerial Fabric Rigging

Safe rigging is essential to ensure aerialists stay safe in the air. While rigging should be done only by someone trained in rigging, it’s important for all aerialists to understand their equipment, basic rigging, and how often equipment should be checked and inspected. Continue Reading

AYCO Board Member Marisa Diamond

Marisa Diamond is an active board member for AYCO as well as co-founder of the Diamond Family Circus and created and directed the first International Circus Film Festival. Marisa began her circus journey at the age of 6 having done gymnastics 3 years prior. After seeing a Circus Smirkus tour show and taking a session with Tito Gaona through her Girl Scout troop, she fell in love with the circus. Continue Reading

Safety Spotlight: The Circus Academy of Tucson

The Circus Academy of Tucson provides aerial and circus arts education through recreational programs, performance troupes, camps, and community outreach for participants of all ages. Their goal is to offer circus to ALL in the community who wish to participate regardless of age, body type, socio economic status, race, religion, culture, physical or developmental challenges, gender identity, or any perceived barrier to participation.
They strive to offer a well-rounded education that goes beyond circus arts. The Circus Academy of Tucson is part of their student’s overall educational life working towards becoming prepared adults and responsible community members. This includes offering community service opportunities and lessons on setting and completing goals, working as part of a team and exploring the self to develop awareness and grow as human beings and world citizens.
“Being a part of the safety program really helped me to think deeply about safety and our overall program. It is a great resource to go to as things come up. I feel like it has improved our program in so many ways, not just by helping me to think about safety, but getting me into a practice of analyzing all aspects of the program and always striving to make it better. It helps me as a business that operates in a place where circus is not very well known to be able to point to something and say, yes, not only have we thought about safety and prioritize safety, but there is a whole national organization dedicated to circus education!”

~ Katherine Tesch, Director


Welcome New Safety Members!

We’d like to give a Circus sized welcome to Circadium our two newest Safety Network Members!
🎪 Circadium is a full-time, 3-year, professional training program for circus artists. We are the first school in the United States to be state-licensed, granting a Diploma of Circus Arts.  As a non-profit vocational college, we have the mission of cultivating, inspiring, and innovating contemporary circus performance in America.

🎪 Philadelphia School of Circus Arts, “Best of Philly Winner” for kid’s classes, is the region’s center of contemporary circus arts for all ages and abilities (ages 3 – adult). PSCA believes that circus classes are for EVERY body.  Seasoned faculty lead a curriculum featuring aerials (static trapeze, sling, aerial silks and lyra), flying trapeze, juggling, unicycling, tightwire, tumbling, acrobatics, pole, and physical conditioning.  In addition to ongoing classes, PSCA also offers introductory workshops, birthday parties, rental space, summer camp and special guest workshops.

Circus Boss Sales Workshop: Win the Work

Are you feeling overwhelmed on how to manage all your event entertainment inquiries?
Join Circus Boss, Tuesday May 31st, in a live virtual workshop where we’ll walk you through the steps to build an effective sales process for booking more events without feeling like a pushy salesperson!


Circus Harmony Under the Big Top

Circus Harmony is excited to again have their St. Louis Arches youth circus troupe performing with Circus Flora under the big top in St. Louis from June 9 – July 3, 2022. Among the other performers will be Claire Wallenda, a former St. Louis Arch who now walks wire with the Flying Wallendas. Following that, the Arches are thrilled to be heading to Montreal to participate in the Montreal Completement Cirque festival!


Circus Harmony will also be running summer programming for local St. Louis organizations while holding their own summer camps, classes, and daily performances in their City Museum home. Circus Harmony is always looking for circus teaching interns, learn more at They are also still interviewing itinerant performers who can also teach. If interested, email CV to


5th Annual MyKingstonKids Fest

The 5th annual MyKingstonKids Fest is all about the circus! Featuring a parade and performances from Bindlestiff Family Cirkus, this event provides an opportunity for children of all ages to enjoy an exciting day of activities and circus arts. Your children will be amazed, excited and engaged. Costumes are encouraged! Free registration is encouraged but not required to attend.
Sat, May 21, 2022
11:00 AM – 4:00 PM EDT
Barmann Park, Kingston, NY
More info:


Catch ALOFT’s Brave Space at Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Aloft is overjoyed to announce that “Brave Space” will perform at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival at the Underbelly Circus Hub! Performing alongside companies like Circa and Cirque Alfonse, this is an incredible opportunity to share the inventiveness and creativity of US circus with an international audience.
After two years thwarted by the pandemic, the dream is finally coming true. However, taking a cast of 8 (plus equipment!) across an ocean is no small task. Aloft is fundraising to offset costs. There are awesome thank you gifts, plus you’ll know you are helping spread the innovations of American circus around the globe! Planning on attending the fringe? Tickets are on sale now through the Underbelly website. Thank you for supporting this endeavor by donating, buying a ticket or just sending good vibes! It really means the world!
Please donate here to help us take this next step in our journey.


Ticket Sales are Now Open for the Circus Smirkus 2022 Big Top Tour!

The 2022 Big Top Tour show is called On the Road Again in celebration of taking our nonprofit youth circus back on tour. Come see the joy of 30 circus youth ages 11-18 perform under our beautiful Big Top on tour across New England. Full details at
★ Greensboro, VT: July 2
★ Essex Junction, VT: July 6, 7, 8 & 10
★ Hanover, NH: July 13, 14, 16, 17 
★ Marshfield, MA: July 20-23
★ Waltham, MA: July 26-August 1
★ Newbury, MA: August 4-5
★ Kennebunkport, ME: August 9-10
★ Greensboro, VT: August 13-14


CSAW Circus School Application Deadline Mastersheet

Are You, Your Students or Your Kiddos Getting Ready to Audition for Circus Schools This Year? CSAW is Here to Help!
CSAW – Connecting Circus Students Around the World has released their 2022 Circus School Application Deadline Mastersheet! Click here:
This spreadsheet includes:
• Circus schools
• Links to applications
• Application deadlines
• Audition dates
• The CSAW Ambassador for the school 
• How to contact that ambassador! 
• What is a CSAW Ambassador? 
A CSAW Ambassador is a current student of their international circus school. They are here to support you through applying, auditioning and attending circus school. If you have a question about a school just send the Ambassador an email or a DM and get an honest answer from a student of that school asap!
There are currently 16 CSAW Ambassadors to help future circus generations. You can find all of the current CSAW Ambassadors by clicking here:


Charlotte Cirque & Dance Center: Summer Circus & Dance Creation Lab Auditions

The Summer Circus & Dance Creation Lab is a two-week program that culminates in a performance.  Students will have the opportunity to take technique classes in dance and circus such as contemporary dance, jazz, hip-hop, aerial silks, trapeze, lyra, juggling, and acrobatics. Students will have the opportunity to choose their technique classes for the two weeks.  Pending on the goals of the students (see Audition Form), we have the capacity to include faculty in other disciplines such as African Dance, Latin Dance, Cyr Wheel, and Aerial Straps.

When: July 18 – 29 (2 weeks) | Performance July 30
For Ages 8+
*Virtual Audition Required
Deadline: April 22 or when all spaces are full ​
Get more details at:


Frequent Flyers Aerial Dance presents the 24th International Aerial Dance Festival

Frequent Flyers Aerial Dance presents the 24th international Aerial Dance Festival 2022: July 31-August 12. Boulder, CO.
3-Hour Immersions, 90-Minute Classes, Workshops, Panels, Performances, and more in person in Boulder, CO! Learn more about the festival and this year’s incredible Faculty Artists Here.
First come – first served. This is your opportunity to get your spot in classes first! Register Here.


Nimble Arts Workshops are back!

June 20 – 24: Nimble Arts Introduction to Teaching Aerials hosted by NECCA in Brattleboro, VT for anyone embarking on or expanding your teaching practice.  Learn the foundations including spotting, skill progressions, classroom management, posture analysis, injury prevention etc.


July 2-7: Tree Dancing Workshop in collaboration with certified arborist, in Weare, NH. Learn the ropes of how to ascend into trees and dance with them in this outdoor combination of aerials, harness dancing and creativity.  Great for beginners and experienced movers alike this workshop is excellent for generating environmentally focused creative material within the natural landscape.


For info & registration visit:


Circus Smirkus Camp Registration is OPEN!

At Smirkus Camp, kids develop new ways to challenge themselves, learn skills like teamwork and problem solving, get terrific physical conditioning, and enjoy fun summer camp traditions like singalongs, costume themed dinners, kickball, and more!
This summer, Circus Smirkus is offering the following sessions at Smirkus Camp, including placement-based camps that require a video submission, as marked with ★ below:
Smirkling Camp | 1 day | June 18 | Ages 5-11
All Levels Circus Camp | 1 week | June 19-June 24 | Ages 8-16
All Levels Circus Camp | 2 weeks | June 26-July 8 | Ages 8-16
Intermediate Camp | 2 weeks | July 10-22 | Ages 12-18
★ Intermediate Skills Intensive | 3 weeks | July 24-August 12 | Ages 12-18
★ Advanced Ensemble | 3 weeks | July 24-August 12 | Ages 12-18
★ Advanced Individual Acts | 3 weeks | July 24-August 12 | Ages 12-18
Get more information and sign up at


Flying Gravity Circus Introduces High School Circus Studies Program

WILTON, NH — Flying Gravity Circus (FGC) is partnering with High Mowing School (HMS) to offer the residential Circus Studies Program (CSP). Aspiring circus artists get:

  • A liberal, arts and sciences high-school education, and
  • Training in physical and artistic circus skills and performance.

“This is the only program like it in the United States — and is a culmination of years of planning and a decade of dreaming,” says Jon Roitman, FGC artistic director and CSP program director. 

The CSP includes:

  • Academic Classes: math, science, English, world language
  • Growing Circus Curriculum: sports psychology, nutrition, anatomy, career management
  • On-Site Circus Training: in our fully equipped studio
  • Performance: in FGC’s advanced troupe 

CSP graduates will have the academic credits required by traditional colleges, plus the skills to apply to a circus college or support a performing arts career.  

Learn more at

Circus Harmony Shows

Circus Harmony was excited to present their first in a series of shows sponsored by the St. Louis Regional Arts Commission and the City of St. Louis’ Downtown Engagement and Public Safety Initiative at the central branch of the St. Louis Public Library. These shows will be presented at various venues and events throughout downtown St. Louis as part of the plan “to activate downtown’s cultural potential while improving public safety.” Follow their social media for announcements of our future DEPSI shows!
Circus Harmony congratulates their alumni, the K.O. Duo, Kyran Walton and Oliver Layher, on their graduation from Ecole Nationale de Cirque and their first professional booking with 7 Fingers!


Game of the Month: Aerial Ro-Sham-Bo (Rock Paper Scissors)

Brought to us by Tara Jacobs and Natalie Keller
Materials Needed: Two aerial fabrics, each with landing mats underneath
How To Play: Players should have already been taught how to invert on the fabrics from standing on the ground and be able to do so without a spot. (‘Tagging’ the fabric with toes to complete the inversion is acceptable). Players may wrap for better grip or put on ‘wrist locks’. Two players stand underneath their own aerial fabric, with a landing mat underneath. They both chant, “Rock, Paper, Scissors, Hup!” On ‘Hup’, both players invert into the position of their choice:


  • tuck (rock)
  • straddle (scissors)
  • straight/hollow body/arrow (paper).

Rock beats scissors, scissors beats paper, paper beats rock. If tied with the same position, repeat. Can play for a single round or ‘best of three’.


Tips: Players should have already been taught how to invert on the fabrics from standing on the ground and be able to do so without a spot. Decide if ‘tagging’ the fabric with toes to complete the inversion is acceptable. 

Variations: Don’t have aerial equipment as part of programming? Create your own rock/paper/scissors for juggling, unicycle, or German Wheel! You can have students come up with the movements and what beats what! 

CSAW Microgrants for US Circus Artists of Color

CSAW – Connection Circus Students Around the World met their fundraising goal for the second year in a row and it means that they can provide another year of Microgrants! To be eligible to apply for a CSAW Microgrant for US Circus Artists of Color you must identify as a person of color who is a citizen, resident alien, or permanent resident of the United States looking to further their education in circus and/or fund their circus related projects and needs. All applicants must be 14 years or older to apply for and receive a Microgrant. Applications are open from the 1st-15th of every month. For more information click here.


Discounts for AYCO/ACE Members

Want to get discounts with these awesome Circus vendors? Discounts are just another awesome perk of being an ACE member.  Become a member today!

Like discounts like this? The more our members use them, the more leverage we have as an organization to encourage companies to provide discounts!


AYCO News Article Submission

Interested in including your news or events relevant to the national circus community in AYCO/ACE’s newsletters? Send your submissions to by the 2nd Friday of the month to be included in our monthly newsletter. Submissions should be no longer than 150 words, written in the third person, and include appropriate links and contact information if relevant. We cannot include PDFs or images, but we can link to them. Please also indicate if you would like your submission included in the AYCOgram (directed towards youth), ACE News (directed towards organizations and educators), or both.


Thank you to our Gold Members!


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