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Super American Circus is Coming to Town

by Leah Salterio

This Christmas, the Super American Circus, based in Hawaii and Florida, is coming to the Philippines to delight Filipinos who can finally go out of their homes after two years of pandemic lockdown.

The Super American Circus is produced by Global Entertainment Productions, with its president and CEO Cornell “Tuffy” Nicholas, also the show’s ringmaster. He comes from a family of extensive circus history in more than three decades.

Local producers Johanan Soyangco and Edwin Chiong, managing director of SGE Production, are bringing the Super American Circus to the Philippines from December 21, 2022 until January 8, 2023, at the Newport Performing Arts Theater, Newport World Resorts in Pasay City. 

The theater that is a usual venue for major concerts, plays, musicals and other exclusive productions, will be the venue that will be transformed into a circus arena this December.

“We already anticipated that,”  said Chiong. “All the designs are based on the standards of the Super American Circus and the structure of the Newport Performing Arts Theater. We will transform the theater venue.”

It was in Hawaii where Soyangco first witnessed the world-famous Super American Circus, which mounts its annual performance starting February.

“The circus was continuous until it stopped last 2020 because of the pandemic,” Soyangco granted. “In April this year, they started performing again.”

Three months ago, Soyangco approached Chiong’s SGE Production to propose a production tie up and bring the Super American Circus to the country.

“I saw the opportunity for Filipinos to watch this [circus], especially after the pandemic, people are probably finding ways on how to spend their money,” Chiong said. “This circus is perfect for the whole family – from the apo to the mama and papa.”

This December will mark the second time for the Super American Circus to perform in the country. The same troupe first came here in 2012 and performed at the SMX Convention Center.

“The Super American Circus is a combination of different acts from around the world,” Soyangco informed. “Before, there were only performers from Russia or China. Now we’re bringing performers from Russia, Belarus, Colombia, Canada and the US.”

Soyangco is not a newbie to productions. In November 2015, he bankrolled Maja Salvador’s “Majasty” concert at the Mall of Asia Arena.

The company of the Super American Circus is based out of Florida, while others are based in Hawaii. The group has a 25-member entourage that excludes a few children. 

“Basically, we are a travelling circus,” said choreographer and artistic director of five years, Elaine Alcorn, also one of the performers but based in Las Vegas.. “So where the tent gets set up, that is our home. We bring a very international experience everywhere we perform.”

Alcorn acknowledged that can be a logistical challenge to bring an entire large production to another country. “The group has to follow a lot of regulations every time,” she said. “We need to be prepared to travel. The other performers in the circus are based from all over the world. They came from other countries.”

The Super American Circus puts together an incredible array of performers whose acts earned standing ovations all over the world. Some of them were winners of the prestigious world-class talent search, “America’s Got Talent.”

The modern, one-ring Super American Circus will showcase thrilling acts like the motorcycle team in the Globe of Danger, the amazing Sky Wheel, the High Flying Motorcycle.

There are also life-challenging aerialists, beautiful aerial ballerinas and amazing jugglers that will keep audiences hanging on the edge of their seats.

Another circus performer, Mario Espana, said the Super American Circus makes it a point to ensure the safety of every performer travelling in the troupe.

“We talk to each performer and ask them what are the individual requirements they need,” said Espana. “What we can source out locally or what things need to be shipped directly from our port. We need preparations ahead of time for our performance. We already have a system in place to get everything done. Our group is arriving in Manila on December 16.”

Espana attested it is a big responsibility to be a circus member. “It is our whole life to entertain people, perform and our profession is passed down to generations,” he explained. “To be a circus performer is really a privilege. You don’t really work. You get paid to do what you want. It’s really a blessed experience.”

While in the Philippines, the Super American Circus will also perform in Cebu City, Davao City, Cagayan de Oro City and Ilocos Norte.

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