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<div style="font-size:165%; border:none; margin:0; padding:.1em; color:#996666;">Welcome! ✫ Bienvenue! ✫ Willkommen! ✫ Добро Пожаловать!</div><div style="font-size:165%; border:none; margin:0; padding:.1em; color:#996666;">Bienvenida! ✫ Benvenuto! ✫ 歡迎 ! ✫ Vítejte! ✫ Καλώς ήρθατε!</div><div style="font-size:165%; border:none; margin:0; padding:.1em; color:#996666;">Üdvözöljük! ✫ Добре Дошли! ✫ Welkom! ✫ Ласкаво Просимо!</div><div style="font-size:165%; border:none; margin:0; padding:.1em; color:#996666;">Velkommen! ✫ Tervetuloa! ✫ Дабро Запрашаем! ✫ Välkommen!</div><br/>
 
<div style="font-size:165%; border:none; margin:0; padding:.1em; color:#996666;">Welcome! ✫ Bienvenue! ✫ Willkommen! ✫ Добро Пожаловать!</div><div style="font-size:165%; border:none; margin:0; padding:.1em; color:#996666;">Bienvenida! ✫ Benvenuto! ✫ 歡迎 ! ✫ Vítejte! ✫ Καλώς ήρθατε!</div><div style="font-size:165%; border:none; margin:0; padding:.1em; color:#996666;">Üdvözöljük! ✫ Добре Дошли! ✫ Welkom! ✫ Ласкаво Просимо!</div><div style="font-size:165%; border:none; margin:0; padding:.1em; color:#996666;">Velkommen! ✫ Tervetuloa! ✫ Дабро Запрашаем! ✫ Välkommen!</div><br/>
<div style="top:+0.2em; font-size:110%;"> Circopedia was originally created with the support of the [http://www.bigapplecircus.com/ Big Apple Circus],<br />and has been inspired and funded by the [http://www.sdrubin.org/ Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation].</div>
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<div style="top:+0.2em; font-size:90%;"> Circopedia was originally created with the support of the [http://www.bigapplecircus.com/ Big Apple Circus]<br />and inspired and funded by the [http://www.sdrubin.org/ Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation].</div>
 
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==In The Spotlight==
 
==In The Spotlight==
  
===HAROLD ALZANA===
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[[File:Cirque_d'Hiver_-_Front_View_(2013).jpg|right|400px]]
[[File:Harold_Alzana_(Cushman).jpg|right|300px]]
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===LE CIRQUE D'HIVER DE PARIS===
Harold Alzana was, from the late forties to the mid-sixties, a star fixture of Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus. His daredevil manner&mdash;working on the high wire without a balancing pole and at high speed, which contrasted with the traditionally slow, seemingly careful, approach of the great high wire acrobats, such as The Wallendas, that had preceded him&mdash;inspired many of the high wire acts that are seen today.
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He was born Harold Davis on September 19, 1917 in Maltby, a small mining town east of Sheffield in South Yorkshire, England. His father, Charles, worked there as a coal miner, but he was also an amateur acrobat, and he began training his children (Harold, his brother Edgar, and their sisters Hilda and Elsie) in his backyard, where he had installed a tight wire two feet off the ground.
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Located in the heart of Paris, between the Place de la République and the Place de la Bastille, at the edge of the historical Marais, the Cirque d’Hiver is the world’s oldest extant circus building. It is also the world’s oldest circus still in activity: It opened its doors in 1852. Its address, at 110 rue Amelot, may seem inconspicuous, but at that precise point, the rue Amelot opens onto the Boulevard du Temple through the small Place Pasdeloup: The Cirque d’Hiver is therefore quite noticeable, practically "on the Boulevards."
  
Charles’s training got good results: At age six, young Harold made his performing debut in local fairs and festivals. But this was just fun; when he reached fourteen, Harold Davis, like most young men in Maltby, followed in his father’s footsteps and began working as a coal miner. In 1941, he married his sweetheart, Minnie. World War II was raging, but Harold and his siblings never stopped practicing and improving their high wire act.
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The Cirque d’Hiver (literally the ''winter circus'') was built for circus entrepreneur Louis Dejean (1797-1879) to serve as his circus company’s winter home. Dejean already managed the Cirque des Champs-Elysées in the fashionable ''Jardins des Champs-Elysées'', which he kept open from May through October. Up to 1846, his main establishment had been the Cirque Olympique, located some five hundred yards from his new circus, on the portion of the Boulevard du Temple that disappeared in 1862 to give room to the present Place de la République, during the renovation of Paris by the Baron Haussmann.  
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The war over, Harold Alzana decided to leave the darkness of Maltby coalmines and tempt his luck in the circus spotlights: It was social climbing in every sense of term! His break came in 1946, when impresario Clem Butson, then producer of Blackpool’s Tower Circus, gave "The Sensational Alzanas" (as Harold and his siblings had named their act) a contract for the summer season. The highlight of the act was Harold crossing the wire on a bicycle with his sisters hanging from a trapeze suspended under it.
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If it was certainly, from the audience point of view, a spectacular finale, it was not in actuality much of a trick since the trapeze provided Harold’s bicycle with a counterweight: The more at risk were actually Hilda and Elsie. But Harold’s solos on the wire were another matter altogether, and this didn’t fail to impress one of John Ringling North’s European talent scouts. Johnny North immediately saw star potential in Harold Alzana, and the act was booked for the 1947 season of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, ''The Greatest Show On Earth''. ([[Harold Alzana|more...]])
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Dejean had sold his old Cirque Olympique in 1847; although it had been built only twenty years earlier (in 1827), it had already lost its appeal and was not practical anymore. Like many circus buildings of its generation, it had been designed with both a circus ring and a full theater stage, and consequently, it was easy for its new owners to transform it into a legitimate theater, the ''Théâtre du Cirque Olympique''. With no permanent home in the winter, Dejean had taken to sending his troupe abroad, to London or Berlin. Although these forays into foreign lands had proved successful enough, having a new winter base in Paris still made more sense.
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Thus, Dejean asked Jacques-Ignace Hittorff (1792-1867), the City of Paris’s Chief Architect, to design the plans for a new circus. Hittorf had already built the Cirque des Champs-Elysées for Dejean, as well as its twin counterpart, the Panorama (today Théâtre du Rond-Point), which were part of the master plan for the renovation of the Chanps-Elysées gardens in the 1840s. Hittorff had also supervised the redesign of the Place de la Concorde (notably with the addition of his own monumental fountain, ''La Fontaine des Mers'') and he would later build Paris’s Gare du Nord, the twelve ''hôtels particuliers'' (townhouses) that surround the Arc de Triomphe on tha Place de l'Étoile, and many other "classic revival" pieces of work&mdash;a style of which he was one of the most influential proponents.... ([[Cirque d'Hiver|more...]])
  
 
==New Biographies==
 
==New Biographies==
  
* [[Baptiste Loisset]], Circus Owner and Equestrian
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* [[Tamerlan Nugzarov]], Cossack Rider
* [[The Kornilov Dynasty]], Elephant Trainers
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* [[Circus Krone]], History
* [[Sergei Korolev]], Acrobat
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* [[Nell Gifford]], Circus Owner
* [[Victor Fomine]], Acrobat, Circus Coach
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* [[William Vos]], Animal Trainer
* [[Annie Fratellini]], Clown, Circus Director
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* [[Jürg Jenny]], Animal Trainer
  
 
==New Videos==
 
==New Videos==
  
* [[Sid_Plummer_Video_(1962)|Sid Plummer]], Musical Eccentric (1962)
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* [[Vivien_Larible_Video_(1989)|Vivien Larible]], Washington Trapeze (1989)
* [[Vavilov_Troupe_Video_(2018)|The Vavilov Troupe]], Banquine (2018)
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* [[Sandro_Montez_Video_2020|Sandro Montez]], Dog Act (2020)
* [[Kerwich_Video_(1962)|Armand Kerwich]], Washington Trapeze (1962)
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* [[Milaev_Video_1951|Evgeniy Milaev]], Ladder Balancing (1951)
* [[Whal_and_Oldfield_Video_(1956)|Walter Dare Wahl & Emmet Oldfield]], Comedy Acrobatics (1956)
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* [[Nesterov_Video_2020|Sergey Nesterov]], Tiger Act (2020)
* [[Tanger_Troupe_Video_(1975)|Troupe Tanger]], Moroccan Tumblers (1975)
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* [[Nikulin_Shuydin_TV_Video_(1981)|Yury Nikulin & Mikhail Shuydin]], Clowns (1981)
  
 
==New Oral Histories==
 
==New Oral Histories==
  
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* [[Durov_Documentary_Video_(c.2000)|Vladimir Durov Documentary]] on Russian Television (c.2000)
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* [[Dolly_Jacobs_Interview_Video_(2018)|Dolly Jacobs Interview]] at The Ringling (2018)
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* [[Pinito_del_Oro_RTE_Video_(1970)|Pinito del Oro's Interview]] on Spanish Television (1970)
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* [[Eradze_Video_(2015)|Gia Eradze]]'s Interview on SSU TV (2015)
 
* [[Rosa_Bouglione_Video_(2012)|Rosa Bouglione]]'s interview on Franch Television (2012)
 
* [[Rosa_Bouglione_Video_(2012)|Rosa Bouglione]]'s interview on Franch Television (2012)
* [[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)
 
* [[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)
 
 
==2018 Circopedia Award==
 
 
* [[Dandies_Video_(2018)|''Dandies'' (Yury Kreer, Johnny Gasser, Kirill Ivanov)]], Russian Barre
 
  
==New Circopedia Books==
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==Circopedia Books==
  
 
* [[Circopedia Books|Philip Astley & The Horsemen who invented the Circus]], by Dominique Jando (2018)
 
* [[Circopedia Books|Philip Astley & The Horsemen who invented the Circus]], by Dominique Jando (2018)
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==A Message from the Editor==
 
==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&mdash;and sometimes daily&mdash;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 [[Special:Contact|contact us]]: we will definitely consider your remarks and suggestions.''  
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''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&mdash;and sometimes daily&mdash;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 [[Circopedia:Contact|contact us]]: we will definitely consider your remarks and suggestions.''  
  
 
:'''Dominique Jando'''
 
:'''Dominique Jando'''
 
:Founder and Curator
 
:Founder and Curator

Latest revision as of 03:10, 5 July 2020

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 inspired and funded by the Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation.

In The Spotlight

Cirque d'Hiver - Front View (2013).jpg

LE CIRQUE D'HIVER DE PARIS

Located in the heart of Paris, between the Place de la République and the Place de la Bastille, at the edge of the historical Marais, the Cirque d’Hiver is the world’s oldest extant circus building. It is also the world’s oldest circus still in activity: It opened its doors in 1852. Its address, at 110 rue Amelot, may seem inconspicuous, but at that precise point, the rue Amelot opens onto the Boulevard du Temple through the small Place Pasdeloup: The Cirque d’Hiver is therefore quite noticeable, practically "on the Boulevards."

The Cirque d’Hiver (literally the winter circus) was built for circus entrepreneur Louis Dejean (1797-1879) to serve as his circus company’s winter home. Dejean already managed the Cirque des Champs-Elysées in the fashionable Jardins des Champs-Elysées, which he kept open from May through October. Up to 1846, his main establishment had been the Cirque Olympique, located some five hundred yards from his new circus, on the portion of the Boulevard du Temple that disappeared in 1862 to give room to the present Place de la République, during the renovation of Paris by the Baron Haussmann.

Dejean had sold his old Cirque Olympique in 1847; although it had been built only twenty years earlier (in 1827), it had already lost its appeal and was not practical anymore. Like many circus buildings of its generation, it had been designed with both a circus ring and a full theater stage, and consequently, it was easy for its new owners to transform it into a legitimate theater, the Théâtre du Cirque Olympique. With no permanent home in the winter, Dejean had taken to sending his troupe abroad, to London or Berlin. Although these forays into foreign lands had proved successful enough, having a new winter base in Paris still made more sense.

Thus, Dejean asked Jacques-Ignace Hittorff (1792-1867), the City of Paris’s Chief Architect, to design the plans for a new circus. Hittorf had already built the Cirque des Champs-Elysées for Dejean, as well as its twin counterpart, the Panorama (today Théâtre du Rond-Point), which were part of the master plan for the renovation of the Chanps-Elysées gardens in the 1840s. Hittorff had also supervised the redesign of the Place de la Concorde (notably with the addition of his own monumental fountain, La Fontaine des Mers) and he would later build Paris’s Gare du Nord, the twelve hôtels particuliers (townhouses) that surround the Arc de Triomphe on tha Place de l'Étoile, and many other "classic revival" pieces of work—a style of which he was one of the most influential proponents.... (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