In 2011 Dragonfly Aerial Arts Studio was looking for a new space to practice. Breakthrough Corporation had a warehouse that was available, and through mutual contacts, a new partnership was born. Breakthrough’s warehouse not only became our studio’s home, but also the first location of Knoxville’s Hometown Circus Extravaganza!
The first circus in 2012 was a single-show fundraiser for Breakthrough. The aerialists from Dragonfly, along with One World Circus and many of their circus friends, created a full show complete with stage lighting and live music performed from the loft of the warehouse. It was a small venue, but big talent made the show a success. Everyone had such a good time that we knew we had something special.
We decide to make it an annual event!
The next year our warehouse venue could barely contain the crowds! Not only did we double our production, offering two show times instead of one, but at each show there was standing room only. It was time to look for a new venue, and through a partnership with The Tennessee School for the Deaf, we were able to accommodate out growing circus. In our third year, we hosted three shows at TSD.
And we have continued to grow, seeking new community partners, offering additional show times, and finding larger venues so that we can continue to delight as many people as possible. The more people we can entertain, the more people we can help! Just as in our first year, all the proceeds from the circus continue to go to community programs and organizations, helping at-risk youth and underserved groups.
In 2015, we were able to accomplish these goals more than ever before by partnering with the Clayton Performing Arts Center on the Pellissippi State Community College Hardin Valley Campus. Their auditorium has allowed us to offer multiple shows to packed audiences, entertaining, educating, and benefiting your community more than ever before.
2018 is the seventh anniversary of our Circus Extravaganza. From humble beginnings, we have reached new imaginative heights. We are celebrating Dragonfly, the circus, and YOU—our friends and neighbors—with four shows on March 9th, 10th, 11th, 2018. All the proceeds from this year's circus will be used to fund our Circus for Everyone programs.
As always, our aerialists find new ways to dazzle from above: the “animal” tamer still tries to avoid trouble, and the laws of physics seem to be suspended as people glide, walk, juggle, and fly across the stage. Come be astounded and delighted, and help us make our community a better place, too!