The National Endowment for the Arts opens its doors to the Circus

Wednesday, July 5 / Washington DC

The National Endowment for the Arts opens its doors to the Circus.

The NEA hasn’t formally acknowledged Circus as an art form, nor does it have grant categories that specifically include it. Many new circuses are not-for-orifut arts organizations, relying on funding outside the traditional mode of ticket and concessions sales and for income. A growing advocacy movement, typified by Circus Now and individuals from many organizations, has finally gotten the ear of the NEA.

Among the invitees, who will be speaking before the NEA are circus owners, academics, historians, presenters, and producers. Voices from the sectors of traditional, contemporary, and social / youth circus will be heard, on diverse topics, including:

Social Change Through Circus Arts
Creating a Path to Success for Circus Artist and Presenters
Physical Comedy as Performance Art
The State of Circus Arts in 2017
Highbrow, Lowbrow, Nobrow: Circus as Art Now and Tomorrow ( with Bindlestiff count-founder Stephanie Monseu and BFC Board Member / Big Apple Circus co-founder Paul Binder

We’ll keep you posted on this historic and important sit-down during the second week of the Smithsonian Folklife Festival!

Send the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus to Washington!

Friends of Bindlestiff, we are asking for your support!! We just launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo to help send the Cirkus to Washington, DC ( — as you may know, we’ve been invited to perform at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival on the National Mall in July. This opportunity is a huge honor, but it presents a financial challenge for a small company like ours. Will you support our campaign to help bring Bindlestiff Family Cirkus to a national audience? And will you help us spread the word about the campaign?

Support our indiegogo campaign HERE:>>

The festival is free to the public, and we’ll be there July 6-9.
More info: Bindlestiff Family Cirkus at 2017 Smithsonian Folklife Festival or

Drop Force & Tool Creative Residencies!

Attention all artists! Drop Forge & Tool in Hudson, NY has an amazing residency program, supporting new work development of all shapes and sizes.

Part of Bindlestiff Family Cirkus’ A Cardboard & Duct Tape Spectacular was developed there last month! Fall Applications DUE MAY 15.

Apply today!

First of May Awardees Announced!

Congratulations to this year’s First of May Awardees!! Angelo Iodice is a longtime Bindlestiff performer who tours the world performing as AJ Silver (the cowboy from the Bronx!), Kyle Driggs is a Bindlestiff Family Cirkus Cavalcade of Youth alum who recently appeared in Cirque du Soleil Paramour, and Bennett Santora is a talented young juggler currently in the 7th grade. We are proud to support all three in the creation of new full-length variety arts productions in NYC!

This year’s selection process was incredibly challenging — we continue to be awed by the vast array of talent in our community. Thanks so much to all who submitted for this year’s award, and we look forward to seeing your work in the coming year!

In the meantime: please come out and support our own new production, Bindlestiff’s A Cardboard & Duct Tape Spectacular (May 4-14)! We want to see your smiling faces in the audience. GET TIX:>>

Open House and Free Community Day with the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus!

Ariele Ebacher

Open House and Free Community Day with the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus!

Sunday, May 21, 2017
12 noon – 5 pm

Reservations for the free performance are highly recommended. Visit or call (518) 822-1438 to  reserve your place.

Keith Nelson

Hudson Hall at the historic Hudson Opera House

327 Warren Street
Hudson, NY 12534
(518) 822-1438

Jan Damm

The Bindlestiff Family Cirkus is thrilled to bring its one-ring extravaganza to Hudson Opera House’s Hudson Hall. The Cirkus wagon rolls in for a free Community Day on Sunday, May 21. From 1:30 to 3:00 pm, youth, families, and friends of all ages are invited to drop in on an open exploration of juggling, stilt walking, wire walking, and other circus skills, led by teen and adult members of Bindlestiff’s Hudson Juggling Club and Cirkus After School programs. 

At 3:30, the world-class artists of the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus take to the spotlight for a 60

Susan Voyticky and Matthew Greenfield

minute show, performing breathtaking acts including Ariele Ebacher, wire walker;  Susan Voyticky and Matthew Greenfield on duo lyra;  plus thrilling spectacles like Jan Damm’s balance stunts on the Rolla Bolla and Keith Nelson’s gut-wrenching sword swallowing act. Live music

The Ringmistress

by Sabrina Chap and drummer Ethan Shorter drive the show’s dynamic pace. Audience participation, physical comedy, and “something for everyone” are all part of the mix. This is not your Grandpa’s circus!


National Volunteer Week!


It’s National Volunteer Week! 


Bindlestiff wants to make a thunderous thank-you to Bethany Gladhill of Gladhill Rhone Consulting. She is a volunteer with, which connects social good organizations with pro bono professionals who want to donate their skills. We appreciate her time, her energy, and the clear perspective she offers on Bindlestiff’s organizational growth potential. THANK YOU, Bethany!

Tickets on sale for A Cardboard & Duct Tape Spectacular!

Bindlestiff Family Cirkus presents

A Cardboard & Duct Tape Spectacular

May 4-14, 2017 (Tickets on sale now!)


Bindlestiff’s latest production, A Cardboard & Duct Tape Spectacular, returns to NYC’s Connelly Theater after a successful premiere run in 2016. A little imagination can go a long way, and the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus continues to reimagine classic American circus tradition with a unique contemporary twist.

Join Bindlestiff’s cast of acrobats, aerialists, jugglers, sideshow marvels, and vaudevillians as they pare the Cirkus down to its most basic elements: discovery, risk, and joy. Always ready to turn the ordinary into the extraordinary, these talented performers bring the audience back to their own childhood experiences of fun. Follow the Bindlestiffs and discover that some cardboard, duct tape, and creativity is all that’s needed to find delight.

“Imaginative…delightfully clever…the show exudes a warmth and affection…all but irresistible.” Spectacle Magazine

Some highlights from the 2016 production:


Concept: Adam Kuchler

Script / Story: Peter Bufano

Jump Rope Choreography: Ekaterina Sknarina

Physical Comedy consultant: Daniel Passer

Set Design:  Bailey McClure

Lighting Design: Mark Simmons

Sound Design: Kris Anton

Rigging Design: Janet Clancy and Michael Richter

Stage Manager: Michael Richter

Roustabouts: Logan Kerr, Jean-Tae Francis, Maks Turner

Musical Director and Composer: Peter Bufano

The Band: Peter Bufano, Nate Tucker, Jeff Morris

Ensemble pieces and acts created by The Cast:

Stephanie Monseu

Keith Nelson

Adam Kuchler

Ekaterina Sknarina

Ivory Fox


Bindlestiff Cavalcade of Youth April 30 at Coney Island USA

Bindlestiff Cavalcade of Youth

Bindlestiff Family Cirkus and Playful Productions present a special showcase for young variety performers, ranging from absolute amateurs to world-class professionals. Juvenile jugglers, diminutive dancers, adolescent acrobats, and a host of other majorly talented minors present a full show of vernal vaudeville.

The program features an amazing array of young talent. These are the future stars of Cirque du Soleil, Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus, Coney Island Sideshow, and television. Where else can you see young unicyclists, tap dancers, magicians, clowns, and contortionists share the stage with Broadway-bound singers and classically trained musicians?

Since its inception in January 2004, the Bindlestiff Cavalcade of Youth program has grown markedly and conducted after-school programs throughout the Empire State. CavalKids have performed in Speigeltents at the South Street Seaport and at the Bard Summerscape Festival, at Abrons Arts Center, at Snug Harbor Cultural Center, and for American Youth Circus Organization festivals.

For tickets and more info:

Cuisine & Confessions at the Skirball Center

Don’t miss Cuisine & Confessions, the newest creation by Montreal-based circus company Les 7 doigts de la main, coming to Skirball Center for the Performing Arts from April 11-16 only! The company’s awe-inspiring acrobats combine kitchen appliances, food, and recipes with elaborate choreography, jaw-dropping acrobatics and pulsating music to heighten audiences’ most visceral senses.

We’re happy to share this discount code: 30% off select performances with code CIRCUS1.

Tickets and more information here: