July 15, 2017


Circus Smirkus Coming to Hanover (David Corriveau, 7/15/17, Valley News)

Watching the young acrobats and jugglers of Circus Smirkus perform last summer, Patrick Chikoloma dared to dream about someday returning to the United States to join the troupe.

At the same time, the then-17-year-old from a slum in the Zambian capital of Lusaka couldn't help questioning his qualifications to do so.

"It was a great show, a wonderful show," Chikoloma remembered on Tuesday night, during a telephone conversation after the company's second show of the day in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. Last summer's tour was on the theme of "The Invention of Flight" and Chikoloma was struck by the talent on display. "There was one little girl in the aerial act who was just amazing. It really inspired me.

"But I thought I wasn't good enough to be in Circus Smirkus."

As it turned out, he was alone in that view. Upper Valley residents who hosted Chikoloma and his fellow members of the Lusaka-based Circus Zambia last summer (see www.vnews.com/Circus-Zambia-Tours-Valley-3528881), encouraged him to audition for Circus Smirkus. He is now the first resident of Africa in the circus' cast, both performing and working behind the scenes on its 30th Big Top Tour, which arrives in Hanover on Thursday and Friday to perform on the theme of "Midnight at the Museum."

Posted by at July 15, 2017 9:05 AM