PBS Explores the Circus in new Documentary

Big Apple Circus Founder Paul Binder, PBS president Paula Kerger, CIRCUS producers Maro Chermayeff and Jeff Dupre, and WNET president Neal Shapiro.

FishbowlNY headed uptown last night for the big top event celebrating the new 6-hour PBS documentary “Circus.” Debuting Wednesday, Nov. 3 and running the subsequent two Wednesdays, “Circus” tells the story of the Big Apple Circus, going behind behind the scenes exploring a distinctive world with its own rules and lingo.

Last night’s party, at Big Apple’s Lincoln Center home, included typical circus fare: hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy and Grandma the clown who roamed the room greeting guests before he/she put on his/her own show for the crowd. After performances from several Big Apple acts, the audience, including some big-time PBS and WNET donors, were treated to a sneak peek.

“Circus” gives an intimate look at several members of the Big Apple team: including juggling brothers, one who’s ready to leave the circus; the “oldest newbie” who’s a real clown; to members of the tent crew, one who goes off his meds one too many times.

Five weeks of training, 10 months on the road, a half-dozen languages spoken, and a 150-person team. Chaos, drama, intrigue all at the “Circus.” Who knew?