By Dominique Jando
Born in the People's Republic of China, Guiming Meng comes from a long line of Chinese acrobats. His father was a master jar-juggler, and not surprisingly, Meng would follow in his father's footsteps. Enrolled at an early age in the Shanghai Acrobatic Troupe, one of the major acrobatic troupes in China, Meng was trained in all traditional Chinese acrobatic disciplines. As it is customary in Chinese troupes, he later participated in a variety of ensemble acrobatic acts in the shows staged by the the Shanghai Acrobatic Troupe.
In 1986, members of the Shanghai Acrobatic Troupe were featured in the 116th edition of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, where they performed several of the acts in their vast repertoire. Guiming Meng was among the performers who made the trip to the United States. At the end of this engagement, he did not return to China, choosing instead to defect to the U.S.
Guiming Meng created a jar-juggling act—the specialty he knew best—and began working in various circuses and variety shows in the United States. He eventually settled in Las Vegas and, in 1991, became a U.S. citizen. He has been featured twice at the Big Apple Circus, in 2004 and 2008.
- Video: Guiming Meng, Jar Juggling, in the Big Apple Circus production of Picturesque (2004)