Trouper Close-Ups: Chase Levy, Jeannette Oubre, and Cheya Potter
Touper Close-Ups: Chase Levy, Jeannette Oubre, and Cheya Potter
Chase Levy is a 16 year old Trouper from Newton, MA. Chase got his start with circus by being a homestay family at the age of 8, where the Troupers opened his eyes to the world of circus. “From there, I went to Circus Smirkus Camp for 6 years.” Chase did not learn all of his skills overnight, and he never let the word “No” defeat him. “Two years ago I auditioned and didn’t get in. So, I auditioned again last year and made it, and this year as well.” All of his hardwork payed off, and is now a second year Trouper. He says his favorite part of being a Trouper is seeing the excited faces of the audience members while he is performing. “In this show I am doing a lot of basing, but I also enjoy diabolo, and am working on that with another Trouper, Will.” Many times Troupers train together, or work together to further their skillset. “It is good when someone else in the troupe that has similar goals to you.” After tour, Chase will be a junior in high school and will continue to train hand to hand and diabolo.
Jeannette Oubre is a second year Trouper from East Aurora, NY and is 18 years old. She was introduced to circus through the Waldorf School in her town, where she learned to juggle. She then attended Circus Smirkus Camp, and found her love of aerial rope. Her favorite part about being on tour is the fact that, “You are surrounded by people who have so much passion for what they are doing. Everyone wants to be here.” She says it can be a challenge to not normalize what she is doing. “It is so easy to fall into this pattern, go out into the ring, and take it for granted. But, each show is the first time the audience is seeing it. I have realized how special it is to be doing it.” She says being away from home can be a challenge, especially because she is leaving for Adrian College in the fall where she will be studying athletic training and competing on their acrobatics and tumbling team.
Cheya Potter is 18 years old from Seattle, WA and this is her third year as a Trouper. She got involved with Circus Smirkus when a Smirko alum, Anna Partridge encouraged Cheya to audition for tour. Cheya specializes in basing both on the ground and aerial. “I like partner work because it is just more fun than doing things by yourself.” As far as Cheya’s favorite part of being a Trouper, she says, “I really like just the constant immersion with other people that like circus as much as I do. Here, you get people who just want to strive for better.” Something she has learned this year, especially as a base, is how to effectively navigate and communicate with others. After tour, Cheya is moving to Boston with a fellow Trouper, Keiran Sass, and will be training at a circus school with two coaches, one of which is a Smirkus alum. Cheya says, “Smirkus has been a really great place to grow up. You are around great role models, and it gives you a chance to explore yourself and identity as a circus performer.”
To join Chase, Jeannette, and Cheya for the 2017 Big Top Tour, get your tickets here!