Encore’s circus program is broken down into four sub genres.
- Tumbling – All serious circus students should be working in the genre of tumbling to enhance the other genres of cirque acrobatics. The strength and physics behind tumbling help a circus artist understand how their body works.
- Circus Arts – This art form for circus involves on the ground acts involving props. Examples of Circus Arts include juggling, stilt walking, unicycle riding, ribbon dancing, hula hoops, and other circus acts that specifically use props within the act.
- Ground Arts – Specifically helps with increasing strength and flexibility, ground arts works on body balance, acro balance (more than one person balancing together), and contortion.
- Aerialist – Involving a combination of strength, beauty of movement, and flexibility – aerialist arts put the artists into the air on a variety of apparatus.
Encore has nine instructors on faculty that work on various sub genres within the cirque acrobatics conservatory. Students are taught safety and safety rigging. All equipment is inspected by the faculty regularly with a formal inspection from an outside party done annually. The students have the opportunity to participate in various Master Classes and the top artists get to train in Las Vegas with professionals in the business.
Rising high and defying gravity….
The art of circus is older than the American institution known as baseball. While human acts that started in the circus over a hundred years ago were largely freak-show or sideshow antics where a person’s unique appearance was put into light (like the Siamese twins, Tom Thumb, and the bearded lady), the current art form of circus is gaining the respect of the artistic reputation of classical ballet. As the art of circus grew, human performers teamed up with animal performers to mystify audiences under a big top. Over the years, many countries in the Mediterranean found a reverence for the art-form of aerialist, ground artist, and overall circus artist. This has still been in obscurity within the United States and it has been just recent history that cirque arts is gaining the notoriety that it deserves. With the founding of Cirque du Soleil, the art form of circus for human acts has been elevated. As the United States catches up to the rest of the world with the understanding of the athleticism, artistry, and grace that it takes to be a successful circus performer, Encore is developing a circus program that helps students gain the fundamental building blocks of cirque.
Each training facility has a multiple point training rig that stands 17 – 20 feet tall. In Hesperia, the facility also has an official sized sprung floor for tumbling. Both campuses also have a cirque conditioning class that is available for students to build the strength needed to be a top level circus artist. It is also recommended that all cirque artists enroll in ballet classes at Encore to gain fluidity in their movements.
One of the highlights of the school year is when Encore creates the Rock ‘n’ Roll Circus that combines Cirque artists, dancers, vocalists, and rock musicians.