Schedule 2021

Please use the links below to select the show, workshop or panel you are interested in joining. Register/purchase your ticket and your link will be sent out closer to the festival.

Friday, June 25

Keynote Welcome & Masterclass

Masterclass: From Concept to Stage with Krista Monson
June 25, 2021 | 4:00 pm MST | FREE/Registration Required

ACAF is thrilled to announce our Keynote Speaker, the internationally renowned Creative & Stage Director Krista Monson!  Our theme for the first-ever Alberta Circus Arts Festival is Creation, and Krista will be here to discuss, share and inspire us all.  

Do you have a creative idea but don’t know how to get it rolling? “From Concept to Stage” is a 1.5 hour webinar led by stage director and visual storyteller, Krista Monson. She will uncover and share the building blocks of her creative process in the hope to inspire and motivate your curiosity in your own creative process.  

This masterclass is a great tool not only for emerging or professional artists, directors, designers, composers, choreographers, coaches and technicians but for anyone who likes to ‘make things’! 

Krista is originally from St. Albert, AB.  She most recently wrote and directed the critically acclaimed production, VIVID,  for the Friedrichstadt Palast in Berlin, Europe’s largest stage. Monson is the first woman in the theater’s 100-year history to serve as writer and director. 

Prior to 2018, Monson spent 13 years with Cirque du Soleil, first as Artistic Director of the renowned production “O” at the Bellagio in Las Vegas, then as Casting Director for Cirque du Soleil’s resident shows worldwide and most currently, as a writer, stage and creative director.

Click here for Krista's full biography.


A show… a film… a circus by Maria Sample, Sidonie Adamson & Renée Mak
June 25, 2021 | 7:00 pm MST

From Vancouver, a show written specifically during COVID-19 in order to celebrate local artists, musicians, and arts venues. Pause.Shift.Rebound is a collaborative, contemporary circus piece that explores the magic of live performing arts and everything that makes this realm possible.

It is your option to join us on zoom on Friday, June 25th at 7:00pm for a live screening party with an interactive artist talk back post show. Or, you can watch Pause.Shift.Rebound on Vimeo at any time between 12:01am on Friday, June 25th and 11:59pm on Sunday, June 27th.

The Zoom link for the LIVE screening and interactive artists talk back as well as the Vimeo link for the weekend viewing will be sent to you no later than Thursday June 24th.

Saturday, June 26

Tour of Alberta Circus Studios

June 26, 2021 | 10:00 am MST | FREE/Registration Required

Join us as we travel around the province on a virtual tour of Alberta’s circus studios!
See where you can stop in and train on your next road trip.

Industry Series Panel Discussion

Expanding Circus Across Canada – Building a Regional Voice in a Post-Pandemic Landscape.
June 26, 2021 | 10:30 am MST | FREE/Registration Required

Get involved with circus arts in Alberta. How can we work together, share our resources, and create highly skilled circus artists, magnificent productions, and shows that tour?

Industry professionals from across Canada will discuss this and more.  An interactive panel moderated by Tim Roberts, Directeur général at Ècole de cirque de Quebec.

Anahareo Dölle, St John’s Int. CircusFest, Newfoundland
Christine Bouchard, En Piste, Quebec
Holly Treddenick, Femmes du Feu Creations, Ontario
Nick Beach, Jeanne & Peter Lougheed Performing Arts Centre, Alberta
Dean Bareham, Greenfools Theatre Society, Alberta
Robin Szuch, Spectacle Blue, Alberta
Renée Mak, Pause.Shift.Rebound Show, BC

Click here for the biographies

Circus Skills Workshop: A Balanced Mindset Through Juggling

With Bekka Rose
June 26, 2021 | 11:00 am MST

Juggling is not only a fun skill to learn, but it’s also an excellent way to improve coordination, relieve stress, clear your mind, and get moving. This workshop will focus on the basics of juggling and its benefits, including how juggling can promote balance in our lives. Participants will learn the basics of juggling 1 to 3 objects and explore fun juggling variations and sequences. Included will be a brief warm-up and a juggling demonstration.

Materials: Each participant will need 3 round objects* and comfortable clothing. Examples: bean bags, oranges, limes, any round fruit you don't mind dropping, tennis balls, or diy bean bags?
*Please ensure you can comfortably hold 2 in 1 hand.

Click here to read Bekka's full biography

Workshop: Storyboard your project

Creative process for show building with Maria Sample, Sidonie Adamson & Renée Mak from Pause. Shift. Rebound.
June 26, 2021 | 12:00 pm MST

Join the creators of Pause. Shift. Rebound. in exploring how to go beyond a single act and into show building. This workshop will cover creative process, planning and project intention and goal setting. Together we will dive into storyboarding, how to "get inspired", teamwork and more in this lecture and exercise based workshop. This workshop welcomes all experience levels and disciplines and if for anyone interested in show creation.

Click here for full biography

Information Session: En Piste and Alberta Circus

En Piste is here to support Albertan circus and the people who make it!
June 26, 2021 | 2:00 pm MST | FREE/Registration Required

In this discussion, En Piste, the National Circus Arts Alliance, will share current programs relevant to those working in circus in Alberta. The Alliance would also like to hear from Albertan circus professionals: what are your projects, your challenges, your ambitions?

After a brief overview of the services available through the Alliance to pan-Canadian circus professionals, En Piste will open the table for discussion: How can we further support the creating, teaching, producing, touring, promoting and celebrating of circus across Alberta?


From Calgary, AB
June 26, 2021 | 7:00 pm MST

TEN: A meticulous approach to contemporary circus featuring seven of Calgary's top artists. Having endured chaos, uncertainty, loss and a variety of hardships during a global pandemic, the artists behind TEN take an introspective look at the emotions that were prevalent throughout the past year. Through the expression of such experiences TEN also showcases the strength, perseverance and resilience of the human condition.

It is your option to join us on zoom on Saturday, June 26th at 7:00pm for a live screening party with an interactive artist talk back post show.  Or, you can watch TEN on Vimeo at any time between 12:01am on Friday, June 25th and 11:59pm on Sunday, June 27th.

The Zoom link for the LIVE screening and interactive artists talk back as well as the Vimeo link for the weekend viewing will be sent to you no later than Thursday June 24th.

Circus Scenes from a Pandemic

Conceived and Curated by Firefly Theatre and Circus
June 26, 2021 | 8:30 pm MST

Circus Artists are used to performing in front of a live audience. How does that change the art and the artist when no one is there?

Firefly Theatre invited 12 circus artists who have appeared on stage with us throughout the years to join us for this virtual show. The result is an intimate and extraordinary collection of circus scenes from a pandemic.

Eight of the 12 videos were commissioned for Firefly Theatre's virtual fundraiser, Bread and Circus, which premiered on April 30th, 2021.There are 4 new, never-before-seen videos added to the collection for this exclusive Alberta Circus Festival screening.

Performances by: Angelie Major-Varallo, Dominique Major, Martin Varallo (Quebec), Billy Kidd (UK), Eliza Lance (Quebec), Kadri Hansen (Estonia), Kristi Wade & Kirby Myers (Australia), Lyne Gosselin & Normand Boulé (Alberta), Mackenzie Baert (Greece), Marla Albiston (Alberta), Patrick Chan (Alberta), Ross Travis (USA), Stephanie Gruson (Alberta), Annie Dugan (Alberta)

Join us live on Zoom for this show and artist talkback! Some of the performers will be setting their alarms and getting up or staying up all night just to be together and talk with us 🙂

Please note: Circus Scenes from a Pandemic will only be shown on Saturday, June 26th at 8:30pm via Zoom.

This show is not available on Vimeo.