Presenting a guest post by Lesley:
Saturday night, after a couple of cocktails, I, along with two friends, attended the 15th annual Juggling and Vaudeville Extravaganza at Benson High School. I’ll be honest: I don’t have much of a base from which to write a comprehensive review about a juggling show. I was not at the 1st-14th annual Extravaganzas and have probably seen a total of 13-20 street jugglers in my lifetime.
Saturday night, then, was a big night for me. I increased my juggler sightings by at least 75%, AND was thoroughly entertained. Both local and international jugglers and stuntmen took the stage. Performers ranged from the polished Cirque Du Soleil alum, Pat McGuire, to the creepy cowboy who danced around stage to techno music with a whip.
In between those acts was quite a bit of silliness. Some surreal: like the three man acrobatic juggling troop, “Dead Bugs on a Windshield”, who dressed in costumes made for young children, created human structures without dropping a pin, and made me feel as though I was very very high; and, my personal favorite, the mesmerizing and endearing large bodied, long armed, small headed clown who simply bounced a giant red balloon around the stage.
There were also some international acts: German juggler, Luke Wilson, skillfully juggled pins, lots of them, so many of them I couldn’t count, and a Norwegian woman bounce-juggled several pink and white balls. I also couldn’t keep track of all the balls she juggled, unfortunately, because a lot of them rolled off the stage.
The vaudeville acts mainly consisted of comedic stunts. One performer threw plungers at a volunteer who was holding a square glass plate and wearing a giant athletic cup (engineered to sporadically squirt a fountain of water); comedian, Charlie Brown, did some fancy stuff with top hats, while making dead-pan, Stephen Wright-like comments; and that aforementioned whip man whipped a piece of toilet paper right out of a volunteer’s hand without leaving a mark. He also chanted, “kill the doggy” while threatening to whip a balloon animal to death. Creep.
Most of the acts were entertaining; some were quite impressive, some quite funny. Those that I would use other, less positive, descriptors were at least short. Besides the acts:
I had a prime seat: not only did I get to sit in the middle of two great friends, each whispering sweet sarcasms in my ear, but I was also just two seats away from a couple of high school boys who continuously made obnoxious comments that I was just buzzed enough to thoroughly enjoy. My friend gagged and complained of their B.O., but I was just too happy to notice.
In conclusion: Viva La Juggling Extravaganza! It kicked the Polish fest’s ass by a long shot [Ed: not possible; Polish fest rocked! See previous post].