Ringling was making its yearly appearance in San Diego last summer, so I went by to see if there were any jugglers with the show. Backstage I was happy to find Jeff Taveggia, who placed fifth in the Akron U.S. Nationals Championship.
The show also included Jim Vogelsang catching hats on his head that were thrown from the audience, Rich Potter doing four clubs in a triple-single pattern and Dave Nelson with a nine box balance.
Taveggia did a routine on unsupported ladder. He built up to it with a short hat routine in which the hat comically ended up on one end of the ladder instead of his head. He also held balance on a rola bola while he stepped completely through a hoop. He and a colleague threw about 30 Frisbees back and forth at high speed, then Taveggia did a spinning routine with a foam rubber seal.
He is doing some great work in practice, including juggling seven clubs and tricks with five. He's working on a finale trick that includes spinning a ball on a mouthstick, a ring on the leg and juggling five clubs.
A month later the Canadian Cirque du Soleil came through town. I've seen many circuses in Europe and assumed this would not compare, but it was a great show!
The juggler was Daniel le Bateleur. This versatile and creative performer did a very smooth three ball routine, using up the entire stage. He did club swinging, but used balls on strings instead of clubs. There were some very advanced moves in his act. His next performance was unlike any I'd ever seen - he tied ropes by throwing knots in them in a routine choreographed to music.