CHEK Upside: Tsunami Circus prepares for first show in two years

CHEK Upside: Tsunami Circus prepares for first show in two years
WatchFor the past seven years the Tsunami Circus program at Saltspring Island Middle School has groomed the next generation of performers.

For students at Saltspring Island Middle School, the circus is always in town.

Tsunami Circus has been teaching children and teenagers from the ages of 8 to 18 the art of circus performing for the past seven years.

“They come in with juggling and then we do rotations of trapeze and then we move to hammocks which is like a sling,” says Tsunami instructor Tiffany Wightman. “Then there are silks which are where the tails come down and they climb up them and then there’s ground acrobatics and then we have unicycling.”

The program is offered by School District 64 and is one of the few public school circus programs in Canada. Tsunami is geared towards helping students build physical and mental strength in addition to teaching teamwork skills.

“It’s such a special opportunity, almost no one gets it so it’s super special and I love it so much,” says performer Zyah Welch.

“It’s also nice to show other people what you’ve learned over the months or however long you’ve trained and then working with other people,” adds fellow performer Sana Wallace.

This weekend marks Tsunami’s first public performance since 2020. It will also be the last performance at Saltspring Island Middle School before it closes, making the weekend even more special.

“It’s the wrap-up of what we’ve done and started and hopefully the legacy can continue in a new way,” says Wightman.

While the future of Tsunami Circus is not yet known, both the performers and instructors hope to find a way for the program to continue.

“I really do hope that it doesn’t [just] turn into a seven-year chapter,” says Wightman.

For more information on Tsunami Circus and the upcoming performances, visit the Saltspring Island Middle School website.

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Cole SorensonCole Sorenson

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