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Give contemporary circus an artistic home in America.  Help us launch the nation’s first higher education program for circus.
We are launching the nation’s first higher education program for circus; a 3-year course where students will acquire a vocational diploma while studying intensively in circus arts, theatre, dance, bodywork, and academic classes.
We are launching the nation’s first higher education program for circus; a 3-year course where students will acquire a vocational diploma while studying intensively in circus arts, theatre, dance, bodywork, and academic classes.
308 backers pledged $50,803 to help bring this project to life.

About

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Circadium: School of Contemporary Circus - Start Up

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Building upon the strong foundations of the highly successful and growing Philadelphia School of Circus Arts, we are creating a full-time, 3-year, professional training program for circus artists.  It's called Circadium.

The United States lacks a dedicated facility for circus higher education. In a few cities, recreational schools host "pro-track" programs, which offer a 1-year full-time training to serious students. None, however, come close to the standards of higher-level circus education programs in Canada, Europe and Australia. Students want to study circus intensively for multiple years, and by doing so, deeply explore the history of the art form, their own physical capabilities, and their creative potential. Higher-level coaches agree that this can be accomplished solely in a multi-year program that gives significant weight to dance and theatre training.

Circadium will become the program called for by the circus students of America. Based in Philadelphia and connected to the Philadelphia School of Circus Arts, the full-time course will provide students with the myriad of performance opportunities necessary to thrive in the circus world. 

Circadium is a non-profit organization with a mission to cultivate, inspire, and innovate contemporary circus performance in America. Through the development of young artists, Circadium will challenge the traditional model of circus in America, advancing the multidisciplinary art form for audiences around the world.

Fundraising for Circadium's launch is critical.  We have a priority of keeping tuition costs low for students (the rate is currently set at $15,000 / year).  As college costs spiral out of control in the U.S., we are determined not to be part of the problem.  Graduating artists should not be saddled with massive debt.

We are also moving into a new facility next year - a historic church in need of major renovations.  To transform this space into the circus school of our dreams, we are going to need your financial support.  

Risks and challenges

Circadium's biggest risk is that it is a completely new model. In Europe and Canada, schools like this are successful, but they are well-funded by national governments. For us to sustain a school like this purely on tuition dollars and grants, and to keep our students' debt low, is going to require sustained effort. This Kickstarter will get us off the ground; but the funding challenges will remain with us year after year.

We are confident that our graduates, our local arts patrons and the arts foundations of Philadelphia will help us to build a longer-term fundraising platform, and that with each year we'll be able to expand our programming. Building this organizational capacity will be a key part of Circadium's first few years.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 10 or more About US$ 10

    Thank you!

    So much circus gratitude, and an invitation to the groundbreaking of our new facility.

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    Pledge US$ 20 or more About US$ 20

    Shoutout on Facebook

    - All benefits above
    - PLUS some ❤️ on Circadium's Facebook page

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    26 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 30 or more About US$ 30

    Free Circus Open House

    - All benefits above
    - PLUS... attend one of our Circus Open Houses, where you can try aerials, acrobatics and juggling for yourself! Open Houses take place twice a year, once in the winter and once in the summer.

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    25 backers
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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Circadium T-shirt

    - All benefits above
    - PLUS... get Circadium's first logo T-shirt! Limited edition and sure to be a conversation starter.

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    Ships to Only United States
    87 backers
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    Pledge US$ 75 or more About US$ 75

    Original juggling sequence video

    - All benefits above
    - PLUS... a personalized juggling trick video made by Greg Kennedy, Kyle Driggs, Jay Gilligan, or Zach Delong. Unless you've dated a juggler, this is the most unique and endearing gift you'll ever receive from a world-renowned object manipulator. One that you can replay over and over and over...

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    Pledge US$ 100 or more About US$ 100

    Tour of new building

    - All benefits at $50 level and below
    - PLUS... bring your hard hat for a tour of new building! That's right - we have keys to the church, and you can see it before it opens to the public.

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    36 backers
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    Pledge US$ 150 or more About US$ 150

    Private lesson with Adam Woolley

    - All benefits at $50 level and below
    - PLUS for up to 2 people - take a lesson with one of Circadium's teachers to get a taste of what our circus training professional students will experience.

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    Reward no longer available 5 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 200 or more About US$ 200

    Circadium silk scarf

    - All benefits at $50 level and below
    - PLUS... a limited edition Circadium silk scarf. These beautiful scarves are sure to be in high demand - especially during our themed "Silk Scarves Gala" in March 2017.

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    8 backers
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    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    Private Group Lesson with Adam Woolley

    - All benefits at $50 level and below
    - PLUS... a private group class with Adam Woolley (up to 5 people). Make it a family affair with your handpicked crew of friends (or actual family).

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    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    2 Tickets to our inaugural gala

    - All benefits at $50 level and below
    - PLUS... two VIP tickets to our Silk Scarves Gala in March 2017! (includes two Circadium silk scarves)

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    6 backers
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    Pledge US$ 1,000 or more About US$ 1,000

    Greg Kennedy Performance

    - All benefits at $50 level and below
    - PLUS... Greg Kennedy, Innovative Juggler and ex-Cirque du Soleil soloist, will perform a 45-minute set at the event of your choice, within a 1-hour drive of Philadelphia. www.innovativejuggler.com

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    Reward no longer available 1 backer
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    Pledge US$ 1,500 or more About US$ 1,500

    Private table at inaugural gala

    - All benefits at $50 level and below
    - PLUS... At our first gala in March 2017 (the Silk Scarves Gala), you will get your own private table, seating up to 8 people. Included: 8 Circadium silk scarves.

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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 2,500 or more About US$ 2,500

    Space for a huge party!

    - All benefits at the $50 level and below
    - PLUS... you can have the entire Philadelphia School of Circus Arts for your own private event on a Saturday night. Have a wedding, bar mitzvah, bachelorette, birthday party, New Year's Eve bash, fashion show, theater performance - it's completely up to you. The space will be available for up to 8 hours. PSCA staff members will be there to run the front desk, help with set-up, decorating, and clean-up, and run our sound system. We will even throw in two ambient circus performers to entertain your guests! This reward must be claimed no later than June 2017.

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Funding period

- (30 days)