Circus Sessions

What is Circus Sessions?

Circus Sessions (now in it’s 5th year) is a weeklong circus laboratory and think-tank that will offer a small group of contemporary circus artists the opportunity to work with internationally renowned circus artist/ instructor/ researcher.  For the first time, this year Circus Sessions will run for two weeks – one for emerging artists and one for professional artists.


June 17-29, 2019

2019 Venue:
Toronto Centre for the Arts

Week One: Emerging Artists
Week Two: Professional Artists

Monday, June 17 to Saturday, June 22 – Emerging Artists

  • Monica Dottor (mentor)
  • Jordan Reinwald
  • Celeste Bliss
  • Elizabeth Munn
  • Evan DeRushie
  • Nicole Malbeuf
  • Leah Skerry
  • Leïla Maillard
  • Alexandra Watt Simpson
  • Eliana Jacobs
  • Eliana Dunlap
  • Christine Conroy
  • Valerie Arthur
  • Grace Law
  • ariane
  • Nicole Belfer
  • Rhen Molly Miles

Monday, June 24 to Saturday, June 29 – Professional Artists

  • Michelle Man (mentor)
  • Stacie Dunlop
  • Tania Marin
  • Sara Torrie
  • Samantha Halas
  • Benjamin Domask
  • Jessie Fraser
  • Allara Gooliaff
  • Raquel Madrid
  • Josa Koelbel
  • Coco Framboise
  • Jessica John
  • Kiki Belle

Circus Sessions #4 | April 23-28, 2018

SHOWINGS: April 27th & 28th

MENTOR: Marie-Andree Robitaille from Stockholm, Sweden
Circus Sessions participants:
Natayu Mildenberger (Toronto), Rebecca Anne Zelewicz (Toronto), Miranda S Tempest (Toronto), Jennifer Dallas (Toronto), Aude Lavergne (Montreal), Andrei Anissimov (Montreal), Noemie Beauchamps (Montreal), Giselle Mar (Montreal), Myriam Bloom (USA), Wondercabinet Weshinskey (USA), Sarah Muehlbauer (USA), Maggie B. Karlin (USA), Inka Lilja (Finland), Ida Cramer (Germany), Tina Carter (UK)

This year we have Alex Bulmer with us to work with 3 artists, Whitney Nicole (Kelowna), Erin Ball (Kingston), and Kate Kavanagh (UK), on audio description and to lead research around increasing accessibility in circus.


Circus Sessions # 3 | May 15 – 19th, 2017

SHOWINGS: May 19th &  May 20th

Produced by Femmes du Feu in partnership with Harbourfront Centre as part of NextSteps 2016/17

Circus Sessions Mentor:
Sean Gandini from the UK. Sean is co-artistic director of the fantastically avant-garde juggling Gandini Juggling. Read more about them here:

Circus Sessions participants:
Greg Tarlin (Toronto, ON), Mighty Mike (Toronto, ON), Louis Barbier (Toronto, ON), Christel Bartelse (Toronto, ON), Manuel Rodriguez (Toronto, ON), Britt Howlett (Toronto, ON), Dominique Rabideau (Montreal, QB), Kevin Cheng (Montreal, QB), Bekka Rose (Montreal, QB), Bailey En (Montreal, QB), Antoinette Lane (Battelboro, VT), Shayna Swanson (Chicago, IL), Courtney Propokas (Chicago, IL), Ty Vennewitz (Ashland, OR)


 Circus Sessions #2 | May 16-22nd, 2016

SHOWINGS: May 20th & May 21st

Produced by Femmes du Feu in partnership with Harbourfront Centre as part of NextSteps 2016/17

CIRCUS TALK: A day of panel discussions – Saturday May 21 10-4pm

Adell Node-Langlois (Paris, France).

Circus Sessions participants:
Dana Dugan (Chicago, IL), Vanessa Furlong (Halifax, NS), Leah Samelson (Quebec, QB), Yury Ruzhyev (Toronto, ON), Katelyn McCulloch (Toronto, ON), Jamie Holmes (Toronto, ON), Rachelle Ellie (Ottawa, ON), Chriselle Tidrick (Brooklyn, NY), Erin Ball (Kingston, ON), Marie-Noel Bety (Montrel, QB), Nicki Miller (Brooklyn, NY)

Circus Sessions greatly acknowledges the generous support of the Ontario Arts Council and The Canada Council For The Arts.


Circus Sessions #1 | May 11 – 15th, 2015

SHOWINGS: May 15th & 16th

Produced by Femmes du Feu and CCAFT in partnership with Harbourfront Centre

Mentor: Fred Deb (Nantes, France).

Circus Sessions participants: Lara Ebata, Angola Murdoch, Diana Lopez Soto, Emily Hughes, Molly Keczan, Diane McGrath, Greg Tarlin, Zita Nyarady, Airin Dalton, Gabrielle Martin, Jimmy Tommy, Noa Lara Meir, Leda Davies, Esther de Montflores, Lou Poirier

Circus Talk – A Day of National discussions on Contemporary Circus
Saturday, May 16 from 10am to 4pm

Panel discussions with circus artists and organizations from across the country including En Piste, Canada Council for the Arts, TOHU, Firefly Theatre & Circus, Allison Collins of the Vancouver Circus Festival, Circus Stella, and more. Free.

Cross Canada glance featuring

  • Yannki- Circus Stella (Moncton, NB)
  • Christine Bouchard- En Piste (Montreal, QB)
  • Samuel Tetrault- En Piste, 7 Doigts De La Main (Montreal, QB)
  • Nadia Drouin- TOHU (Montreal, QB)
  • Allison Collins- Vancouver Circus Festival (Vancouver, BC)
  • Annie Dugan- Firefly Theatre (Edmonton, AB)
  • BrandyLeary- Anaandam Dance Theatre (Toronto, ON)
  • Connections between Canada and the rest of the world, Autopiste, touring (Nadia Bouchard and Samuel Tetrault