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Three Eagan residents are part of the Circus Juventas’ summer show, which opens later this month in St. Paul.

Performance postponed in 2020

Eliana Bly, Claire Madden and Owen Kipp are spending their summer with the circus.

The three Eagan residents are part of the Circus Juventas’ summer spectacular, Galaxium, which will have 16 shows between July 30 and Aug. 15

Dubbed as an “outer space adventure show” Circus Juventas originally planned Galaxium for summer 2020, but due to safety concerns related to COVID-19 organizers postponed the show for one year.

Madden was relieved.

She graduated in 2020 from Eagan High School and was planning to move on.

But, she decided to go to Normandale Community College. Since she missed last year’s summer show “I thought I might as well extend it through the year.”

“I’m cherishing every drive here,” Madden said. “I’m sentimental with every moment.”

Madden is part of the acrobatics ensemble where she does plenty of “flips and tricks” in the second half.

“I’ve been taking classes since 2007,” Madden said. “I’ve done a lot of things like aerial acts and trapeze. But, I got to the highest level in acrobatics and that’s what I decided to focus on for the last show.”

Bly, who graduated from School of Environmental Studies earlier this year, has multiple roles in the show from being a asteroid, a bird, newspaper reporter and a member of an alien tribe.

She’ll showcase variety of skills on the bungee trapeze, the ladder trapeze and her favorite, the Mexican cloud swing.

“It’s basically a rope swing,” Bly said. “You pump it up, and do drops and leaps off of it. It’s really hard, but I’ve been doing it long time.”

It took them both years to get to this point. Bly has been with Circus Juventas since fourth grade and took several classes through the years.

As they got older, they began to focus on their strengths.

It was a challenge last year when things were closed down. They still took classes, but it was virtual.

“It was a hard year to stay in shape,” Madden said. “They did a good job with the Zoom classes and the home workouts. I’d be in my garage doing burpees and cartwheels, but it wasn’t the same. The circus is a sport you can’t really do on your own. You have to have the apparatus and the equipment and the coaches and the safety stuff.”

So what is the show about?

Galaxium will take the audience on a space mission to the edge of the universe as performers travel to lush rainforest, fly with primordial beasts, and uncover the cataclysmic secret at the heart of a distant planet.

It’s not easy to describe, but Bly tried.

“There’s two people and there’s a stone,” she said. “They go planet hopping hoping to find their grandparents using a special stone. They meet different characters along the way.”

Not everyone’s intentions are fully revealed at first, either.

This is their first summer show.

Both of them have been in the spring program before, but they described it as more of a recital for family.

“The summer show is the best of the best,” Madden said. “It’s the advanced performers.”

They’ll be practicing upwards of 40 hours a week leading up to the final shows.

“This is our last hurrah so we’re making the best of it,” Madden said.

Bly is looking forward to performing.

“It’s empowering,” Bly said. “You train for so long. To show off all the things we get to do, it makes it worth it.”

Tickets for its summer show went on sale July 5 via Ticketworks or at the Circus Juventas Box Office, 1270 Montreal Avenue, St. Paul. Thanks to the relaxed restrictions, they’re able to open all 1,000 seats in the big top.

Circus Juventas is a the largest youth performing arts circus school in North America serving more than 2,500 children and youth with a array of circus arts training and performance opportunities in a noncompetitive setting.

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