Circus Juventas, North America’s largest youth performing arts circus in the tradition of Cirque du Soleil, will present its 16th summer extravaganza in an all-new production of “Sawdust”, a step back in time to the golden age of the traveling circus. Told through the tale of two young men chasing their dream, Sawdust brings the fame, fortune, glitz and grit of the old circus in performances running July 29 through August 15 at the Circus Juventas Big Top, 1270 Montreal Avenue, St. Paul.
Sawdust will feature performances by advanced level students who will be joined by legendary circus stars Willy Edelston (age 86) and Tony Steele (age 74). A salute to the origins of the modern-day circus, Sawdust is an action packed ride filled with comic characters and breathtaking performances that will take you back to the golden age of the Big Top.
Willy and Tony narrate their heartwarming coming-of-age tale and join the students in a story that is filled with big dreams, conflict and adventure, new friends and unexpected alliances, first love and a last, lingering look back.
Sawdust will highlight traditional circus acts including teeterboard, acrobatics, breath-taking swinging trapeze and slapstick clowning mentored by the former Ringling icon Bello Nock the clown! The most amazing high wire act, the popular Russian swing and the most exciting and exhilarating of all – the flying trapeze – return this summer.
Two thrilling new additions to the show include the heart-stopping Wheel of Steel, and an active menagerie of life-size animated circus animal puppets built by Juventas students under the direction of Puppet Farm Arts Artistic Director Christopher Lutter-Gardella. Watch the students manipulate fully-performable puppets that include an elephant, a tiger, an acrobatic bear and a long-necked giraffe.
World-renowned fiddler and mandolinist Peter Ostroushko and his band return to Juventas with music created specifically for Sawdust.
Tickets range $15-$25 for adults; and $12.50 to $25 for children under 10 and for seniors over age 65. Special family and matinee discounts are available. Reserve tickets by calling 651-699-8229 or online at or www.circusjuventas.org.