Wunderle wins spot with traveling circus

ROCKINGHAM — Fourteen-year-old wire walker, clown, acrobat and aerialist Ariana Wunderle of Rockingham has earned a spot with Circus Smirkus, the country's only traditional traveling youth circus.

Last fall, Wunderle submitted an audition tape to Smirkus headquarters in Greensboro and was called for a live audition in January. She will travel and work with 29 other performers ages 10 to 18 who represent some of the world's most exciting young circus talent. This year's troupe includes 16 returning troupers and 14 new troupers who reside in the United States and Canada. Their skills include juggling, wire-walking, clowning, acrobatics, hula hoop, aerials, and unicycling and more.

As "Smirkos," they will join fellow troupers in tasks such as taking care of props, selling concessions and popcorn, and working cooperatively with the professional tent crew, light and sound technicians, equipment riggers, costumer, musicians and others who travel with the one-ring show.

The performers will hit the road for a 68-show tour that touches down in 16 cities and towns in the Northeast over the course of seven weeks. Performances locally are at Cheshire Fairgrounds in Swanzey, N.H., July 15 and 16, the Fullington Farm Field in Hanover, N.H., July 21 and 22, or the Three County Fairgrounds in Northampton, Mass., July 31 and Aug. 1.

Wunderle trains at the New England Center for Circus Arts in Brattleboro when she is not performing with Circus Smirkus or Wunderle's Big Top Adventures.

For information and tickets, visit smirkus.org, or call 1-877-764-7587 or email info@smirkus.org.


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