Laliberté to be Honored in the Circus Ring of Fame

The founder of the Canadian troupe Cirque du Soleil and three family troupes will be added to the list of famed performers featured in the Circus Ring of Fame on St. Armands Circle in Sarasota in January.

The honorees have been selected through a new international nomination and voting process.

The Circus Ring of Fame Foundation has announced the class of 2020 includes Guy Laliberte, a former street performer who went on to become founder of Cirque du Soleil, which has transformed the modern circus world with an international array of productions. He also is the founder of One Drop charity and Lune Rouge.

The King Charles Troupe, founded in 1958 as a unicycle club in the South Bronx, has entertained audiences for decades with its comedic antics and faux basketball games, will be inducted at the ceremony on Jan. 12. The troupe was featured with the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. They will be joined by Los Quiros High Wire Artistry, performed by a family that has earned numerous international awards over six generations. The company received the Golden Clown award at the Monte Carlo International Circus Festival in 2002. The Carillo Brothers High Wire Duo is another award-winning act that spans two generations of fathers who passed on their skills to sons who carry on the traditions.

This year’s honorees are the result of a new nominating and voting process that included the organization’s first global outreach through a new Circus Advisory Council.

The new process has been in development for three years, said Bill Power, Foundation chair. “We wanted to find a method of broadening the feedback loop to incorporate voices from the worldwide circus arts community.”

The Circus Ring of Fame was launched in 1987 to recognize international circus acts and the circus heritage of the Sarasota area. Honorees are displayed on plaques around the pedestrian walkway on St. Armands circle. There are more than 100 honorees, including the five Ringling Brothers, John Ringling North, various members of the Wallenda family, the Cristiani Family, Sylvia Zerbini, Circus Sarasota founders Dolly Jacobs and Pedro Reis, the Derrick Rosaire Family, Clyde Beatty, Gunther Gebel-Williams, Emmett Kelly and Bello Nock.

{ SOURCE: Sarasota Herald Tribune }