Week 2 begins!

Our students seem to be finding their groove. Week one has sunk in and they are really starting to put together all the skills they were introduced to last week.  DeMarcello came in and now EVERYONE is in love with Hambone!

Also, they have decided to make a video. and we need a gorilla suit… not kidding.

Wednesday was special. It’s the day the students started becoming teachers outside of our walls.  Heading over to the park on a sunny beautiful day for practice, swarms of kids from the community center circled our rising stars.  Acrobatics and juggling, and the next thing you know, they can’t help it. Back flips and tiny little hands being shown how to juggle balls and rings by the  Big Top Steel students!

Check out the Photos on facebook HERE

Mandela Food Co-op

mandelasmalllogo

Mandela Foods Cooperative is a worker owned grocery store, conveniently located across from the West Oakland BART station in West Oakland, CA, a community once long underserved in grocery retail. We value our customers and proudly offer high quality foods and service seven days a week. We love what we do and you will feel it. Come see why people love shopping at Mandela Foods Cooperative.

Days 3 + 4

Big Top Steel“Big Top Steel is like an illusion. It appears to be a factory when it’s really opportunities all around. What you put out is what you get in.

The places it can get you and the people you can meet are all up to your behavior, participation, willingness to learn, and respect. 

The teachers are SUPER CRAZY and FUN!!

For the first time I really feel like I’m being treated my age… Joy, laughter, sweat, respect, care, struggle, and silliness all at Big Top Steel” – LaurenphotoIMAG1229

There aren’t enough words for how proud we are of these amazing young people.  They push through the hard parts and how to bring all these different skills together; comedy, juggling, breakdancing, acrobatics, being physical and funny without words, expression of self all in one giant whirling ball of laughter… It’s incredible to watch.

IMAG1217They are working hard and have decided as a group today they want to see this build and grow.  They have added some elements, they constructed practice juggling balls today and tomorrow is a lesson in stilt building! Monday they are moving into costume and mask creation as well as adding body percussion to the smaller acts they are developing at home this weekend.IMAG1246

This is one of the better things we have been a part of, and it is inspiring to watch these young adults take control of their program and start shaping its direction.

We couldn’t be prouder of you all!

 

Day 2!!!

Breakdancing is hard. It really is. It is not only physically challenging, but trains our muscles in ways we hadn’t previously imagined.  It is both Hard and AMAZINGLY FUN.

IMAG1141_BURST003Huge props to the students who really pushed themselves today in tackling a brand new way of using their bodies.  

Xzist came in today building on his teaching experience at AcroSports, and did the students first introduction to this new and very impressive looking form of dance.

Warm ups and stretches have never felt so good! (Or so needed…)IMAG1126

More progress on the juggling front,  act creation and learning more about what it means to build a troupe, trust in each other and ourselves.

Also: Acting games are a blast!

Our fantastic students also got word today about a few upcoming shows…. More details to come!

IMAG1160We have a couple spots open for the two week intensive that starts next Monday. Contact us if you know a young person who wants to perform, or if you want to help the program grow!

outreach@americansteelstudios.com      510.544.9625

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Day 1 at Big Top Steel

Day 1 groupToday was our first day. We are so excited we have to share a bit. First off, the group of students we have is amazing. They are completely different from each other and have an amazing ability to pull in skills and experiences from different parts of their lives and incorporate it into games and activities.

Also, they are learning quickly. Day 1 and FOUR students successfully juggled three balls. 4. That’s a record (I think).first juggling

Traditional getting to know you combined with some very non traditional movement and laughter ended in a great day.  Huge smiles and some genuinely excited people make this tired girl very happy.

You are NOT a juggling clubWe want to congratulate the students for showing up with such positive attitudes and being willing to take the risks necessary to try new things and discover new talents.  They rocked it today.

We also want to take this opportunity to extend a welcome to a new student starting tomorrow with a strong history of dance and writing. She is an excellent addition to the crew!

Renegade Juggling

Renegade Juggling

Juggling & Fire Equipment for the Entertainment Professional

Renegade Juggling founded in 1981, is one of the oldest manufacture of juggling and fire equipment. The Renegade 95mm juggling club is the standard of the juggling industry. Renegade Juggling, manufactures and assembles all of our juggling props custom, to the jugglers specifications. Renegade offer eight juggling club bodies to choose from. We offer a complete selection of new-to-market juggling clubs: fat heads, flat head and Px3, all custom made in our workshop, by jugglers for jugglers.

Anthony Gatto - 5-club world record holder. 45 minutes IJA-Baltimore 1989 using 95mm clubs... Another satisfied Renegade customer

Anthony Gatto – 5-club world record holder. 45 minutes IJA-Baltimore 1989 using 95mm clubs… Another satisfied Renegade customer

Renegade’s selection of the juggling props, like juggling hats, fire torches, juggling rings, juggling balls, shaker cups, spinning plates and diabolos is extensive. Renegade stocks a very wide and complete range of all juggling props. Be it contact juggling or hat manipulation we supply the best props available. If you want to learn how to juggle or learn about performing juggling, Renegade has a collection of Instructional Juggling DVD and books on juggling.

One of the most exciting new trends in juggling is LED glow equipment, and no one has a wider selection than Renegade. Glow balls, LED clubs, LED rings, LED hoops, LED poi and LED staffs. We offer programmable lights and/or fiber optics in our glow hoops, poi and staff.

Renegade now has a complete line of fire dance and fire performance equipment. Flow toys to fire toys, we have a complete line of fire juggling or fire manipulation props. Fire poi, fire staff, fire fans, fire jump-ropes, fire hoops are all in stock. Many fire props are custom made to your specifications. If you want to learn to fire dance we have a complete selection of DVD’s and books on fire dancing.

For the circus performer, circus arts teacher, or any juggling instructor Renegade Juggling has a great selection of juggling props, and circus props that can meet the demanding durability needed in teaching juggling.

Renegade Juggling has excellent customer service, ships most order the same day, and specialized in supply juggling equipment to professional jugglers and circus arts performers.

VISIT Renegade Juggling

Dave Clay – Artistic Director

IMG_2440Born and Raised on the west coast of the United States, Dave has worked and performed as a circus artist for most of his life. Starting off as a street performer in Eugene OR, he quickly became nationally recognized as a top tier juggler and comedy performer. Dave toured Europe from 2002-2005 and graduated from the University of Oregon with a B.A in Spanish.  Since 2006 Dave has toured nationally performing his solo work and collaborating with the award winning troupe, The Handsome Little Devils.

Dave performing in a refugee camp in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake devastated the country

Dave performing in a refugee camp in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake devastated the country

Tour de Fat Austin, TX 2008

Tour de Fat Austin, TX 2008

For most of a decade he has worked in major theaters across the nation including 42nd Street’s New Victory Theater, The Lincoln Center in Washington D.C. and Cleveland Playhouse Square.  He has worked in and taught circus with The New Olde Time Chautuaqua, The Mermejita Circus in Oaxaca Mexico and Cirque Du Monde Los Angeles.  He started volunteering for Clowns Without Borders in 2010.

Partners

Each of the partner groups is awesome and unique in what they bring to the group as a whole.  What they have in common is creative application and integration of the arts and self in service with the rest of the world.  We are artists who make a living with our art.  We serve populations in the US and internationally. We create jobs, bring joy, teach, and learn constantly. We work really hard, we love it, and we are happy. Those are the things that we want to encourage in young adults about to enter the world.

Behind the mask, under the makeup, behind the curtain, under the hat… WE ARE

American Steel Studios: An arena of possibilities, an arena for potential, a space big enough for you to envision and enact your next crazy idea. When they said “it can’t be done” they had obviously never been here. This 6-acre Industrial Arts facility is the largest in the country and quite possibly the world, all women run, and all about community building, the arts, sustainability, and actualizing dreams. http://www.americansteelstudios.com

Clowns Without Borders: An International non-profit offering laughter to relieve the suffering of all persons, especially children, by sending professional performers into areas of crisis, including refugee camps, conflict zones and territories in situations of emergency. They bring levity, contemporary clown/circus performances and workshops into communities so they can celebrate together and forget for a moment the tensions that darken their daily lives.   http://www.clownswithoutborders.org

Prescott Circus Theatre: An Oakland based performing arts education and youth development non-profit organization.  Now it its 29th year, PCT provides Oakland children and youth with free circus arts programs where they learn with professional artists in a safe and supportive environment.  Through circus and theatre arts training, PCT’s mission is to empower and engage youth as they develop confidence, teamwork, perseverance, artistic talent, and a dedication to working for success. PCT’s programs promote  skill mastery, physical activity, positive relationships with peers and adults, and opportunities to shine for the community. http://www.prescottcircus.org

American Clothing Experiment: A pay-it-forward non-profit dedicated to advancing the human experience in education, arts, athletics, and the natural world through volunteerism, stewardship, and direct community engagement. The Experiment uses profits from U.S. made and sourced products from artists utilizing recycled, upcycled, and reclaimed materials to create community based programming that embody fun and discovery.http://americanclothingexperiment.org

Partners

Each of the partner groups is awesome and unique in what they bring to the group as a whole.  What they have in common is creative application and integration of the arts and self in service with the rest of the world.  We are artists who make a living with our art.  We serve populations in the US and internationally. We create jobs, bring joy, teach, and learn constantly. We work really hard, we love it, and we are happy. Those are the things that we want to encourage in young adults about to enter the world.

Behind the mask, under the makeup, behind the curtain, under the hat… WE ARE

American Steel Studios: An arena of possibilities, an arena for potential, a space big enough for you to envision and enact your next crazy idea. When they said “it can’t be done” they had obviously never been here. This 6-acre Industrial Arts facility is the largest in the country and quite possibly the world, all women run, and all about community building, the arts, sustainability, and actualizing dreams. http://www.americansteelstudios.com

Clowns Without Borders: An International non-profit offering laughter to relieve the suffering of all persons, especially children, by sending professional performers into areas of crisis, including refugee camps, conflict zones and territories in situations of emergency. They bring levity, contemporary clown/circus performances and workshops into communities so they can celebrate together and forget for a moment the tensions that darken their daily lives.   http://www.clownswithoutborders.org

Prescott Circus Theatre: An Oakland based performing arts education and youth development non-profit organization.  Now it its 29th year, PCT provides Oakland children and youth with free circus arts programs where they learn with professional artists in a safe and supportive environment.  Through circus and theatre arts training, PCT’s mission is to empower and engage youth as they develop confidence, teamwork, perseverance, artistic talent, and a dedication to working for success. PCT’s programs promote  skill mastery, physical activity, positive relationships with peers and adults, and opportunities to shine for the community. http://www.prescottcircus.org

American Clothing Experiment: A pay-it-forward non-profit dedicated to advancing the human experience in education, arts, athletics, and the natural world through volunteerism, stewardship, and direct community engagement. The Experiment uses profits from U.S. made and sourced products from artists utilizing recycled, upcycled, and reclaimed materials to create community based programming that embody fun and discovery. http://americanclothingexperiment.org

Xzist Martinez

xzistBorn and raised in Miami, FL, Xzist started break dancing in 1997. He later moved to New York City where he became a serious competitor and won multiple competitions over a span of 10 years on. In the Summer of 2011, Xzist found a home in San Francisco where he joined various circus groups and began working as a circus performer. He has has become one of the sole strong links between breakdance and circus, and as such, has quickly gained acclaim for being on the artistic forefront. He works at many festivals and shows around the country with groups such as The New Eccentrics and The Vau de Vire Society. He is currently teaching acrobatics at AcroSports in Oakland, CA.

Big Top Steel - a collaborative project of: