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==In The Spotlight==
 
==In The Spotlight==
[[Image:Philip_Astley.jpg|right|250px|Philip Astley]]
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[[File:Rudy_Horn_at_Tower_Circus.jpeg|right|280px]]
===A SHORT HISTORY OF THE CIRCUS===
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===RUDY HORN===
  
If the history of theater, ballet, opera, vaudeville, movies, and television is generally well documented, serious studies of circus history are sparse, and known only to a few circus enthusiasts and scholars. What little the public at large knows, on the other hand, is circus history as told over the years by imaginative circus press agents, and repeated—and often misunderstood and distorted—by writers of popular fiction, Hollywood screenwriters, and journalists too busy to investigate further. One of the most popular misapprehensions about circus history is the oft-repeated idea that circus dates back to the Roman antiquity. But the Roman circus was in actuality the precursor of the modern racetrack; the only common denominator between Roman and modern circuses is the word itself, ''circus'', which means in Latin as in English, "circle".
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Rudy Horn (1933-2018) was one of the best and most successful jugglers of the post-WW2 era; he was not only a great technician: It took a long time for his cup and saucers juggling routine on unicycle, which was his trademark and was unique in its time, to be emulated—principally by Chinese acrobats!
  
The modern circus was actually created in England by [https://www.amazon.com/dp/1984041312/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1517698824&sr=8-2&keywords=Philip+Astley+and+the+Horsemen Philip Astley] (1742-1814), a former cavalry Sergeant-Major turned showman. The son of a cabinet-maker and veneer-cutter, Astley had served in the Seven Years' War (1756-63) as part of Colonel Elliott's 15th Light Dragons regiment, where he displayed a remarkable talent as a horse-breaker and trainer. Upon his discharge, Astley chose to imitate the trick-riders who performed, with increasing success, all over Europe. Jacob Bates, an English equestrian based in the German States, who performed as far away as Russia (1764-65) and America (1772-73), was the first of these showmen to make a mark. Bates's emulators—Price, Johnson, Balp, Coningham, Faulkes, and "Old" Sampson—had become fixtures of London's pleasure gardens and provided Philip Astley with his inspiration. ([[SHORT HISTORY OF THE CIRCUS|more...]])
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He was born Rudolf Horn in Nuremberg, Germany, on February 14, 1933, in a circus family. His father, Rupert Horn, had worked as a strong man before appearing in a teeterboard act and eventually creating an aerial duet, the Duo Rupertis, with his wife, Brigitte. Rudy was initiated to juggling a little by accident, on Christmas Eve 1940. His father started juggling with three apples to entertain Rudy and his baby sister, and did a series of passes to Rudy, who showed an innate ability to catch and return the fruits; after ten minutes, he could juggle them by himself! His professional path was decided then and there.
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Rudy went through the usual training of all circus children, starting with acrobatics, to which were added tap dance and, four hours a day, juggling practice with his father and his maternal grandfather, Benedikt Schiefer, the family’s juggler, who owned a small touring circus. In late 1942, Rupert Horn contacted the manager of Nuremberg’s WinterGarten Theater and suggested that he hired his son for the WinterGarten’s Christmas show. (Rupert had been drafted by the Wehrmacht, and although he was based in Nuremberg, he and his wife couldn’t work anymore.)  
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Rudy, who was only nine years old, was indeed very young, but he could fit in the "young prodigy" category: He juggled three balls, three clubs, five hoops, and ended with sending atop his head with his foot a saucer, a cup in the saucer, a spoon in the cup, and a piece of sugar to crown it all. The manager was reluctant at first, but he eventually caved in: As the war dragged on, good performers were increasingly hard to find. Thus, Rudy made his debut in 1942 in the WinterGarten’s Christmas Show in Nuremberg, adding to his act a little acrobatic routine and some passing that he performed with his grandfather: Young Rudy stopped the show! ([[Rudy Horn|more...]])
  
 
==New Biographies==
 
==New Biographies==
  
* [[Irina Naumenko]], Hand Balancer
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* [[Rudy Horn]], Juggler
* [[The Owl and The Pussycat]], Trapeze Act
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* [[Albert Rebla]], Juggler
* [[Walter Nones]], Circus Director, Animal Trainer
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* [[Baptiste Loisset]], Circus Owner and Equestrian
* [[Norman Crider]], Juggler
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* [[The Kornilov Dynasty]], Elephant Trainers
* [[Zhejiang Acrobatic Troupe]], Chinese Acrobatics
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* [[Sergei Korolev]], Acrobat
  
 
==New Videos==
 
==New Videos==
  
* [[Kelli_Ramazini_Video_(2018)|Kelli Ramazini]], Trapeze (2018)
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* [[Diakoffs_Video_(1962)|The Diakoffs]], Horizontal Bars (1962)
* [[Fuma_Boys_Monte_Carlo_Video_(2001)|The Fuma Boys]], Comedy Acrobatic (2001)
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* [[Donshuding_Video_(2000)|Duo Donshuding]], Hand-to-Hand Balancing (2000)
* [[Emile_Carey_Video_(2005)|Emile Carey]], Juggler (2005)
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* [[Flying_Cavarettas_Video_(1984)|The Flying Cavarettas]], Flying Trapeze (1984)
* [[Selifanov_Video_(2001)|The Selifanov Troupe]], Flying Trapeze (2001)
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* [[Flying_Terrels_Video_(1976)|The Flying Terrels]], Flying Trapeze (1976)
* [[Rene_and_Alexia_Casselly_Video_(2001)|René & Alexia Casselly]], Pas-de-Deux on Elephants (2001)
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* [[Trushin_Troupe_Video_(2018)|Trushin Troupe]], Teeterboard Act (2018)
  
==Featured Oral Histories==
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==New Oral Histories==
  
* [[Circo_Price_Video_(2017)|A Short History of Madrid's Old Circo Price]], Circus History (1970)
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* [[Rosa_Bouglione_Video_(2012)|Rosa Bouglione]]'s interview on Franch Television (2012)
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* [[Circo_Price_Video_(2017)|A Short History of Madrid's Old Circo Price]], Documentary (1970)
 
* [[Anastasia_Dementieva_Video_(2017)|Anastasia Dementieva-Kornilova]] – Vadim Vernik Interview (2017)
 
* [[Anastasia_Dementieva_Video_(2017)|Anastasia Dementieva-Kornilova]] – Vadim Vernik Interview (2017)
 
* [[Freres_Knie_Video_(1962)|''Les Frères Knie'']], Documentary (1962)
 
* [[Freres_Knie_Video_(1962)|''Les Frères Knie'']], Documentary (1962)
 
* [[Jean_Richard_Video_(1979)|Jean Richard and Jean-Pierre Richard]] at the Cirque Jean Richard – Christian Boner Interview (1979)
 
* [[Jean_Richard_Video_(1979)|Jean Richard and Jean-Pierre Richard]] at the Cirque Jean Richard – Christian Boner Interview (1979)
* [[Buster_Keaton_Video_(1947)|Jérôme Medrano about Buster Keaton]] at the Cirque Medrano (1947)
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==Circopedia Books==
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* [[Circopedia Books|Philip Astley & The Horsemen who invented the Circus]], by Dominique Jando (2018)
  
 
==A Message from the Editor==
 
==A Message from the Editor==

Latest revision as of 20:00, 18 January 2019

Welcome! ✫ Bienvenue! ✫ Willkommen! ✫ Добро Пожаловать!
Bienvenida! ✫ Benvenuto! ✫ 歡迎 ! ✫ Vítejte! ✫ Καλώς ήρθατε!
Üdvözöljük! ✫ Добре Дошли! ✫ Welkom! ✫ Ласкаво Просимо!
Velkommen! ✫ Tervetuloa! ✫ Дабро Запрашаем! ✫ Välkommen!

Circopedia was originally created with the support of the Big Apple Circus,
and has been inspired and funded by the Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation.

In The Spotlight

Rudy Horn at Tower Circus.jpeg

RUDY HORN

Rudy Horn (1933-2018) was one of the best and most successful jugglers of the post-WW2 era; he was not only a great technician: It took a long time for his cup and saucers juggling routine on unicycle, which was his trademark and was unique in its time, to be emulated—principally by Chinese acrobats!

He was born Rudolf Horn in Nuremberg, Germany, on February 14, 1933, in a circus family. His father, Rupert Horn, had worked as a strong man before appearing in a teeterboardA seesaw made of wood, or fiberglass poles tied together, which is used to propel acrobats in the air. act and eventually creating an aerial duet, the Duo Rupertis, with his wife, Brigitte. Rudy was initiated to juggling a little by accident, on Christmas Eve 1940. His father started juggling with three apples to entertain Rudy and his baby sister, and did a series of passes to Rudy, who showed an innate ability to catch and return the fruits; after ten minutes, he could juggle them by himself! His professional path was decided then and there.

Rudy went through the usual training of all circus children, starting with acrobatics, to which were added tap dance and, four hours a day, juggling practice with his father and his maternal grandfather, Benedikt Schiefer, the family’s juggler, who owned a small touring circus. In late 1942, Rupert Horn contacted the manager of Nuremberg’s WinterGarten Theater and suggested that he hired his son for the WinterGarten’s Christmas show. (Rupert had been drafted by the Wehrmacht, and although he was based in Nuremberg, he and his wife couldn’t work anymore.)

Rudy, who was only nine years old, was indeed very young, but he could fit in the "young prodigy" category: He juggled three balls, three clubs, five hoops, and ended with sending atop his head with his foot a saucer, a cup in the saucer, a spoon in the cup, and a piece of sugar to crown it all. The manager was reluctant at first, but he eventually caved in: As the war dragged on, good performers were increasingly hard to find. Thus, Rudy made his debut in 1942 in the WinterGarten’s Christmas Show in Nuremberg, adding to his act a little acrobatic routine and some passing that he performed with his grandfather: Young Rudy stopped the show! (more...)

New Biographies

New Videos

New Oral Histories

Circopedia Books

A Message from the Editor

CIRCOPEDIA is a constantly evolving and expanding archive of the international circus. New videos, biographies, essays, and documents are added to the site on a weekly—and sometimes daily—basis. Keep visiting us: even if today you don't find what you're looking for, it may well be here tomorrow! And if you are a serious circus scholar and spot a factual or historical inaccuracy, do not hesitate to contact us: we will definitely consider your remarks and suggestions.

Dominique Jando
Founder and Curator