We are excited to announce that we are bringing

Peace through Pyramids to Puerto Rico! 

 
Circus Harmony, St. Louis’ only social circus organization, has been using circus arts to bring hope and motivate social change since 2001. Through our Peace Through Pyramids program, we have worked toward building bridges between communities in the St. Louis area and around the world by uniting children through circus arts. After successful Peace Through Pyramids collaborations in Ferguson and Israel, Circus Harmony is excited to announce that we will partner with The National School of Circus of Puerto Rico (ENC) for a cultural exchange July 3-17, 2018 in Puerto Rico!
 
The ENC is a non-profit founded in 2014 that, like Circus Harmony, provides professional training for future circus performers and delivers social circus community workshops for the social transformation of young people at risk. This exchange will unite members of Circus Harmony’s St. Louis Arches troupe with the children of ENC’s Social Circus project in Dorado, one of the neighborhoods devastated by Hurricane Maria in 2017.
 
The hope is that this partnership will inspire the Puerto Rican children, empower the American children and then the two troupes of young people can create a show to bring some much-needed joy and entertainment to Puerto Ricans who are still working to rebuild after the destruction of the hurricanes. They plan to go to communities who were among those most impacted by the disaster including Corozal, Naranjito, Comerío, and Morovis.
 
Circus Harmony is considered one of the foremost practitioners of social circus, a growing intervention tool use to foster personal and social development in at-risk youth. Our Peace Through Pyramids partnership with the Galilee Circus in Israel and between children in different neighborhoods in St. Louis have helped children reach new heights physically, mentally, emotionally and socially. We are thrilled to add a partnership with the young people in Puerto Rico! We believe building pyramids with people is a great way to build bridges between communities!
 
Fundraising events for the project will be announced in the next few weeks, but anyone interested in helping to support this inspirational endeavor may contact Circus Harmony at circusday@circusharmony.org or at 314-436-7676.
 
To follow this new adventure, go to http://circusharmony.org/peace-though-pyramids-puerto-rico/!

 

                                                                    GALILEE CIRCUS AND ST LOUIS ARCHES in ST LOUIS 2016

Our original Peace Through Pyramids partners,  the Galilee Circus, were in St. Louis August 2-15, 2016! We hope you got to see them perform. 

We are currently are working on three local Peace Through Pyramids partnerships! Learn more here. 

Thanks to support from the Trio Foundation of St. Louis, Staenberg Family Foundation and The Kranzberg Family Foundation we had a wonderfully successful Peace Through Pyramids partnership 2016 this August in St. Louis.  Numerous photos and videos can be found on our Facebook page and YouTube page (look for Galilee Arches 2016 acts).

Please check out this cool 360 video of the Galilee Arches at City Museum!

You can read about the amazing two weeks on our Israeli partners’ blog: Galilee Circus Summer tour to St Louis – 2016

St. Louis Public Radio covered this community connecting partnership in their story: Conflict in Israel, Ferguson in ‘14 close to the hearts of those in St. Louis-based Circus Harmony

A brief history of Peace Through Pyramids:

Circus Harmony is St. Louis, Missouri’s only social circus organization as well as its only complete circus school. Social circus means we use the teaching and performing of circus arts to motivate social change. We are both an arts education and a youth development organization.  By inspiring individuals and connecting communities with our circus education and entertainment programs, we have a positive impact on the St. Louis area and beyond.

 

galilee arches 2007 in israel credit Clickart Zohar (Israel 2007)

 

In 2007, we began Peace Through Pyramids as a collaboration between Circus Harmony’s diverse youth circus troupe, the St. Louis Arches and the Galilee Circus, a Jewish/Arab youth circus from Israel!  Together, they form the Galilee Arches!  These ordinary young people have done extraordinary work showing the world what is possible when you focus on what you can do together instead of on what sets you apart. We went to Israel in 2007, 2012 and 2014. They came here in 2008, 2012 and will be back in 2016. At each meeting, they have produced incredible performances while forging friendships that have stayed strong across oceans and years. In 2014, we were supposed to be in Israel from July 9-23 but due to the conflict with Gaza and an FAA Flight ban, we were there until July 29!  During this time, more than ever, people needed to witness Peace Through Pyramids, Harmony Through Handsprings and Joy Through Juggling! They needed to see what can happen when people focus on what connects them instead of what separates them.

 

galilee arches 2010 in America credit Chris Mrozewski (USA 2008)

 

Within days of our return to St. Louis, the suburb of Ferguson erupted in violence after a white police officer shot and killed an African-American teenager named Michael Brown. With Circus Harmony’s office being in Florissant, we were actually closer to the violence than when we were in Israel.  Circus Harmony believes the path to peace is one of cooperation and communication. Teaching children from different neighborhoods how to stand on each other’s shoulders may seem like a strange way to take this path, but it works for us! So, thanks to a Social Impact grant from the Regional Arts Commission and a PNC project grant from the Arts & Education Council, we started Peace Through Pyramids: Ferguson. The Jewish Federation of St. Louis then granted Saul Mirowitz, a Jewish day school, funding for a collaboration with our students in Ferguson which gave us Peace Through Pyramids: Ferguson/Mirowitz! St. Louis Community Foundation also granted us funding so the children form Peace Through Pyramids: Ferguson could attend Circus Harmony summer camps. This fall, Camp Manitowa made possible a Peace Through Pyramids: Ferguson/Mirowitz reunion! If you would like to help us keep this partnership going, please donate HERE !

 

Galilee Arches 2012 (USA 2012)

 

As part of Peace Through Pyramids, we were thrilled to have with us a Jewish youth circus intern, Yahel Retter, from the Galilee Circus with us from February 2015 through January 2016. He was one of the student teachers who helped us with this project. When people watch our flying children from all neighborhoods and backgrounds working together, we hope they see what Rabbi Marc Rosenstein observed the first time we did shows in Israel: ” I think many who saw the shows felt the same tears in their eyes maybe out of the feeling one is seeing a vision of something that we all long for… the total obliteration of barriers, whether social, economic or gravitational.”Circus Harmony promotes peace though pyramids, joy though juggling and harmony through handsprings.

 

peace through pyramids Israel 2014 st louis arches with galilee circus credit jessica hentoff (Israel 2014)

 

Peace Though Pyramids is the subject of the award-winning movie Circus Kids by Alexandra Lipsitz (available here) and the critically acclaimed book Watch Out for Flying Children by Cynthia Levinson (available here).

Thank you!