On Stage

Feel the Love

My Circus Valentine

Attend

What: My Circus Valentine

Where: Cirque Lab, 1401 6th St.

More:

WHEN: Feb. 13-16

Cost: $10-$25

Info: http://www.bellinghamcircusguild.com

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Last February, after attending “My Circus Valentine” with my fella at the Bellingham Circus Guild’s Fairhaven-based Cirque Lab, I found myself deeply regretting the years I had missed the high-flying compendium of acts designed to celebrate love in all of its many forms.

As we sat in the darkened warehouse watching the mesmerizing magic unfold, I vowed I wouldn’t make the same mistake again. After all, where else can audiences expect to see amazing aerialists put their bodies on the line, juggling sailors in love, bearded lady lumberjacks with sweet dance moves, hula-hoopers performing through their tears, and a rough-around-the-edges Cupid? 

Although my guy will be out of town this weekend, I don’t plan on missing the 10th annual iteration of “My Circus Valentine,” an event founder and producer Anneka Deacon has poured her heart and soul into since the inaugural sold-out show at the guild’s first “ramshackle” space behind a Cornwall Avenue antique store.

“I had no idea I’d still be doing this show 10 years down the line when I first started it,” Deacon says. “I’m an experiential learner, so I needed to wear a lot of hats and make a lot of mistakes along the way. Fortunately, Bellingham is one of the best places to grow yourself up as an artist.”

Along with new works by longtime collaborators and aerialists Dream Frohe and PJ Perry, the anniversary shows will also feature Daniel Sloan as magic-maker Happenstance, the return of starry-eyed jugglers Wren and Della, dance trapeze artist Shannon Gray, Seattle duo Dizzy Daze, longtime circus ally Sara Sparrow, roaming circus artists and a group finale that promises to make jaws drop throughout the Cirque Lab.

“Nine artists from the show are co-creating a new act in a very short time on a crazy, dynamic aerial apparatus that none of us have ever worked on before,” Deacon says. “The apparatus, created by Terry Crane, is an infinity rope loop—an aerial rope that runs continuously through two pulleys at the top.

“This aerial ensemble piece will be something completely new for Bellingham audiences, as the infinity rope loop has never graced a Bellingham stage until now.”

If the upcoming shows are anything like last year’s, I expect to gasp, laugh, possibly cry and thoroughly enjoy the love that radiates throughout every moment of “My Circus Valentine.” I’ll sample various potions and artisanal chocolate, get silly at the photo booth, and join my fellow community members at an event that isn’t just for sweethearts, but for all hearts.

“Romantic love gets enough attention, and the truth is, not everyone gets to have that kind of love,” Deacon says. “We need each other and we need to feel that we belong. Life is difficult and confusing, and a lot of the time it just doesn’t make sense. I am far more interested in exploring how to foster the feeling of connection and belonging.”

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