Monday, December 22, 2014

Aerial Arts and the Ann Arbor Aviary

I've posted here before about burlesque (Michigan Burlesque Festival Detroit, Why I Like Burlesque, Burlesque: Its History and Its Present), but I don't think I have shared much about other forms of "lost" entertainment currently making a comeback, like the aerial arts of silk rope and trapeze. I saw some wonderful displays of trapeze at the Detroit Burlesque Festival, and a lot of goth clubs will include a silk rope act or two. (I once saw some excellent performers at Bar Sinister in Los Angeles.)
My boyfriend Greg and I recently attended a show at the Ann Arbor Aviary where one of terrific and talented coworkers is also an instructor. We also saw many familiar faces from the local burlesque shows we've seen. This was the first really diverse show we've been to this year, and we loved it. There single, couple, and group silk rope performances, hooping, burlesque, belly dance (two ladies and a gentleman), a Japanese butoh performance, and trapeze. (And possibly more that I am forgetting.)
Not being a fan of heights, let alone falling, I have a lot of respect for aerial performers. I know it takes a lot of practice and body conditioning to make the poses and movements look so fluid and effortless.
So inspired was Greg by this show that he signed up for the A2 Aviary's static trapeze beginner class. Greg has always been interested in circus and sideshow performances and currently runs the blog Dr. Gentleman's Wagon Tracks about the history of the circus in the United States. If he goes on and takes the second class, he will be eligible to perform at the school's showcase performance. Which would be really, really neat! (Keen, even.)
I am hoping to persuade some of the Aviary crew to let me interview them for upcoming Journal issues. Sometimes I think, "Ah! I'm gonna run out of people to interview! What am I gonna do??" Then new doors and connections open up. (I think I will start with my coworker.) One thing is for sure, I'm starting to feel more like a journalist than an author. (Yes, there is a difference.) And I think I am ok with this.

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