The circus is in town.
American Crown Circus and Circo Osorio’s Canadian tour has brought them to Red Deer’s Parkland Mall, where they will hold a series of family-friendly performances over the next few days.
The first performance was Thursday evening. There will be two performances Friday, three on both Saturday and Sunday, and one final show on Monday.
“We have an acrobatic circus. We’ve got acts from Argentina, Columbia, Mexico – we are an international circus. The acts you see here are big-thrill acts,” said ringmaster Roberto Osorio, who founded American Crown Circus and Circo Osorio with his brothers Leo and Francisco.
The three brothers are part of a four-generation circus family – the brothers’ great-grandfather got into the industry after falling in love with a girl who was a trapeze artist, said Osorio.
“He ended up running away and joining the circus – this happened in Mexico in the late-1800s. Then his family brought him back and then he’d run away again, and they’d bring him back. That happened three times. They eventually stuck him in the Mexican military for three years,” said Osorio.
“He finished with the military, went to look for the girl, found her and married her. That’s how my family started in the circus.”
Osorio and his brothers performed a high-wire act from 1990 to 2000, including stints with Circus Circus Reno and Circus Circus Las Vegas. After their performing career was done they opened American Crown Circus and Circo Osorio in 2000 and have been travelling ever since.
The circus has continued to grow and change since its inception, Osorio said.
“I remember when VHS tapes came out, there was an article saying circuses were over. The (writer) believed in five years, circuses would cease to exist. We just evolved,” he said.
“Circuses evolve and change with the times.”
Osorio said this is a circus the whole family can enjoy.
“This is a family-oriented circus. When people come around they’re going to have a good time. Just as the parents’ grandfather or great-grandfather brought them (to the circus as a child), we hope they pass along the tradition to new generations to experience the circus.”
After its stop in Red Deer, the circus will make stops in Grande Prairie and Edmonton before heading to British Columbia.
For more information, or to buy tickets, visit www.americancrowncircus.com.