I can’t remember when I first discovered Sarah Morgan’s website, XO Sarah, but it was an immediate game-changer for me. Not only does Sarah have mad blog skills (she’s written books, sells incredible blog templates, runs an e-course… the list goes on and on!), she’s also an award-winning web designer, a badass entrepreneur, AND a circus performer! How cool is that?!
Sarah is currently teaching and performing at great heights as an aerialist in San Diego, while running her blog and web business. Can you say “living the dream”?!
Read on to find out more about this high-flyer!
Who are you, and what do you do?
I’m Sarah and I’m a web designer, a writer, a blogging consultant and a circus performer. When I’m not working from home helping people create badass blogs and businesses online, I teach and perform aerial arts.
What made you want to be an aerialist? How did you get to where you are today?
I fell into circus arts kind of by accident. I took dance lessons as a kid and performed in lots of high school musicals, but it wasn’t until I was in my late twenties that a friend asked me to take an aerial silks class with her. I went, I was horrible, but I was hooked. After a couple years of training I formed a circus troupe with a couple of my circus friends and have performed at events in the US and Canada. Five and a half years later I’m still training almost every day, teaching classes, and have had the opportunity to learn from some fantastically talented aerialists.
What has been your favourite past project/performance so far, and why?
I’ve got two! First, my circus troupe and I performed as bearded ladies at a massive Halloween party. We did a sexy chair dance with feather fans covering our beards and then had a big reveal before performing on lyra (aerial hoop). It’s was one of the most fun routines to create and perform. And second, I performed with Salt-N-Pepa at an NBA halftime show. Yes, the ’80s hip hop group from your childhood. It was a totally random and fun one to add to my resume!
Do you have a “war story” from your performing past that you’d be willing to share?
I’ve been really lucky and haven’t had anything go terribly wrong. We did however have a fairly close call a few years ago when we were performing outside in a tiny town in the Appalachian mountains. We have a free-standing aerial rig which is essentially an 18.5 ft lightning rod, so we were watching the weather all day as menacing-looking clouds rolled through. After our last performance of the sky started to get darker and darker and literally three seconds after the last piece of the rig was stowed in the car a crazy torrential downpour started. We would have been in big trouble had our show lasted even a few seconds longer!
What’s coming up next for you? Do you have a project on the go, or one coming up in the near future?
I recently moved away from my circus family in Detroit to sunny San Diego, so I’m not performing much. But I do teach aerial classes and train as much as possible during the week.
What are your goals for the future?
My goals are mostly training related right now – there are a few aerial skills I’ve been hoping to nail like wheel-downs and climbing the silks with just my hands. Also gaining more flexibility since I’ve spent more of the last year on stamina and strength.
What words of advice would you give to a young person who would like to do what you do and follow in your footsteps?
First off, don’t worry that you need to be in shape or be super flexible to try an aerial class — it really is accessible to people of all shapes, sizes, and ages. If you’re serious about training, find a studio with high ceilings and talented instructors. Aerial arts isn’t regulated at the moment so it’s easy to end up at a studio with a mediocre training program and learn lots of bad habits. Take advantage of opportunities to train with guest instructors or travel to different studios — I’ve learned a lot by seeing the different ways people teach, condition, and perform. And lastly, the more classes you take each week the stronger you’ll get and the faster you’ll retain the skills. I went from training only a few times a week to taking 7-8 classes, six days a week and my stamina and strength went through the roof! If your studio offers conditioning classes, take advantage!
Where can we find you online?
Thank you so much for sharing, Sarah!
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4 thoughts on “Theatre Talk With Sarah Morgan, Circus Aerialist”
This makes me want to try arials. Good interview!
I think it would be SO much fun!
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I absolutely adore multi-passionate women! This was a really awesome read. One day I am going to woman up and join a dance class like I’ve been wanting to since I was 5! Thank you!