Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Children's Circus This Week! And Fall Registration

New spotlight on the Children's Circus in The Courant! Check out some great pictures and an awesome video -- and don't forget to come see all the magic in person this Friday night at 5PM!

Oddfellows Children's Circus Makes 26th Annual Performance Aug. 1 In Middletown

Registration for Fall Classes is also open! Check out the available classes for ages 3-19 on our Website, and we're seeking Playwrights and Actors for the Instant Play Project on September 6th (Details under "On Stage")


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Meanwhile, Over at the Circus...

“Everybody starts somewhere. They see artists and counselors who started just like them. When I started, I couldn’t even get on a unicycle. The kids want to work hard, because they can see the end result. And the counselors and older campers set the scene, they make it feel safe. Everyone is always very supportive of everything. I was working on self-mounting the giraffe [jumping onto a six-foot-tall unicycle], and I tried for the entire day. When I finally got it, Evan [the unicycling artist] stopped and told the whole class and everybody clapped.”- Echo, 14

Friday, July 18, 2014

Middletown Children's Circus: CIRCUS SAVES THE DAY


We're practicing our unicycle skills

Figuring out some new tricks..


August 1st. 2014.  5pm.  Macdonough School.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014


The Children’s Circus of Middletown is holding auditions for trombone, saxophone, trumpet and other band instruments.

Minimum Age 14.

Performances will be on August 1st (Raindate August 2nd)

Rehearsals are held weekday evenings in July.

Please contact Oddfellows Playhouse if interested: kristen@oddfellows.org or 860 347 6143 ext. 101.

Let us know your name, age, instrument, and a way to contact you.

Thank you!

Saturday, April 12, 2014



Middletown Children’s Circus
8-14 years

This five week program provides instruction in Circus Arts to over 200 children. The Children’s Circus of Middletown culminates in a huge outdoor performance with 200+ performers and over a thousand spectators annually.

For 26 years children have learned juggling, unicycling, acrobatics, clowning, stilting, dance and visual arts and worked with skilled artists to create an original, open-air, Circus every summer since 1988!

Kids work together, build skills, strength and friendships over the course of this unique program.

Session: June 30 - August 1st (raindate August 2nd)

Days/Times: Monday - Friday. 9am - 11:30am OR 12:30 - 3pm
Transportation Available to Middletown Residents.
This program is administered by the City of Middletown - Commission on the Arts - Kids Arts. 

Advanced Circus Program
Ages 12 - 15 years

In conjunction with the Middletown Children's Circus, young people with prior circus experience who want to extend their circus training are invited to enroll in this full day program.

Young people will receive advanced training with Allison McDermott. Expect to work hard - building strength, flexibility and skills over the 5 week session. Advanced Circus students also serve as role models and student leaders in clowning, stilting, unicycling, juggling, acrobatics and puppetry classes and performances.

The Advanced Circus Program performs with the Middletown Children's Circus in the final spectacular!

Session: June 30 - August 1st (raindate August 2nd)

Days/Times: Monday - Friday 9am - 3pm.

Financial Aid is available
Transportation Available to Middletown Residents.

Check back with www.oddfellows.org for more classes for kids, teens and families!

Friday, March 21, 2014

ODDFELLOWS is Hiring for the Middletown Summer Children's Circus.

We are looking for Exceptional, Enthusiastic & Energized - 
  • Teaching Artists - Unicycling, Stilting & Acrobatics.
  • Assistant Technical Director
  • Costumer

Please read job descriptions and requirements and submit applications and inquiries to:

CIRCUS TEACHING ARTISTS for the Children’s Circus of Middletown

The Children’s Circus of Middletown seeks Circus Teaching Artists for our 26th annual summer circus program. Interested applicants should have experience working with kids, lesson planning and have a strong base of circus performance skills. Teaching Artists should be able to design safe, fun, and engaging curriculum that challenges, instructs, and inspires young people in a circus training and performing environment.

This five week program provides instruction in Circus Arts to over 200 children between the ages of 8 -15. The Children’s Circus of Middletown culminates in a huge outdoor performance with 200+ performers and over a thousand spectators annually. Teaching Artists must plan and implement a variety of 1-2 hour lessons, for 10-20 kids of mixed ages, throughout the program. Teaching Artists teach a basic intro class to all participants, plan and teach a 2-week training intensive for participants who select their discipline, and direct two 5min acts for the final performance.

Teaching Artists also work closely with the Circus Director, the Designer/Technical Director, Costume Designer and Band Director in the creation of their acts for the final performance. The Teaching Artists are the heart of the Children’s Circus and ultimately create and shape the circus performance under the guidance of the Circus Director and with the support of the design team.

Counselors are assigned to Teaching Artists as assistants in all the disciplines. It is the responsibility of the Teaching Artist to task delegate and mentor these young staff towards being positive role models to the kids and future teachers themselves.

See below for specific disciplines and requirements.

Program/Training Dates: June 25 - August 4, Weekdays from 8:30am-4:30pm
Mandatory Daily Staff/Artist Meetings 3pm - 4:40pm
Performance Date: Friday 8/1, Rain Date Saturday 8/2.

-Responsible for guiding students towards the mastery of stilting.
-  Demonstrates knowledge of stilting skills and tricks for beginner and advanced walkers.
-  Must maintain a high level of safety and precaution. First Aid and CPR certified a plus.
-  Responsible for, and has experience with, stilt repair and maintenance.
-Has experience performing and directing

-  Responsible for guiding students towards the mastery of unicycle riding.
-  Demonstrates knowledge of unicycling skills and tricks for beginner and advanced riders.
-  Must maintain a high level of safety and precaution. First Aid and CPR certified a plus.
-  Responsible for, and has experience with, unicycle repair and maintenance.
-  Has experience performing and directing.
-  Familiarity with the rolling globe a plus.
* Interested candidates should have experience working with children. *

-  Responsible for guiding students in basic, intermediate and advanced acrobatics tricks and choreographed routines.
-  Demonstrates knowledge and has background in acrobatics and/or gymnastics, partner acro, safety and spotting, and mini-tramp. Experience with jumping through a ring of fire a plus.
-  Responsible for the cleanliness and maintenance of the school gym, mats and miscellaneous equipment
-  Must maintain a high level of safety and precaution. First Aid and CPR certified a plus.
-  Has experience performing and directing.
* Interested candidates should have experience working with children. *

All candidates must complete a background check as a condition of employment.

Please submit resume, cover letter and any work samples to:  Jason@oddfellows.org

Assistant Technical Director (ATD) of the Children's Circus of Middletown, Connecticut
The Children's Circus of Middletown seeks an assistant to the Technical Director (TD)/Designer to aid in designing, creating, moving, purchasing, repairing, setting up, breaking down and cleaning up all the technical needs for a large-scale children's summer circus program. Now in its 26th year, the Children's Circus of Middletown offers some 170 youths between the ages of 8-15, along with their families, the ability to participate in a fun and challenging, community wide spectacle. The program culminates in a fantastic outdoor circus performance attended by 1000+ people annually. The ATD is responsible for providing exceptional support to the TD and must demonstrate a willingness to work long days in the summer heat. It is fast paced, challenging and extremely rewarding job that requires a lot of time and commitment.
The position orbits around our thrice-weekly Tech Nights, during which children and their families along with staff and community volunteers help create the sets and props out of various recycled materials, papier-mâché, cardboard, foam and paint. The ATD is responsible for assisting the TD in the creation and assignment of art jobs to Tech Night volunteers. They are also responsible for maintaining a safe, fun and creative atmosphere where volunteer participants feel welcomed and supported. Additional responsibilities include the maintenance and upkeep of the tech workshop, attendance at weekly, on-site practice performances by the kids and open communication between the TD and the circus director. The ATD participates in conversations that allow for plenty of artistic and creative input.
This position requires a significant amount of working time throughout the 6 weeks in order to meet the demands and deadline of the show date.
  • 40+ hrs/wk availability June 23rd thru July 28th.
  • 50+ hrs/wk availability July 29th thru August 5th.
  • Experience working in artistic collaboration
  • Experience working with children
  • Experience creating 3D art objects
  • Impeccable time management
SKILLS + EXPERIENCE (preferred but not required):
  • Basic competence in carpentry
  • Experience with power tools
  • Experience with large-scale puppet building, papier-mâché
  • Comfort with leading an arts workshop of 40+ youth
  • Comfort multitasking in a managerial role
  • Commitment to, and extensive practice in, clear communication
  • Passion for the performing arts and technical theater
  • Completion of a Background Check
  • Driver's License
  • Your resume
  • A 1-page cover letter describing your interest in this position and your experience working in artistic collaboration
  • Some examples of your artistic work, if applicable
Send all materials to:  Jason@oddfellows.org
Housing available for out of town artists.


Program Dates: June 25th - August 4th 2014

Staff Training and Brainstorming:June 25th-June 27th

Circus Camp: June 30th - August 1st

PERFORMANCE: August 1st, 5pm(Raindate August 2nd, 5pm)

-Provide costumes and accessories for the 150+ youth performers and 40+ staff

-Design and create base costume tshirts for every participant, staff, band member and stage hand

-Manage a very strict budget

-Measure each participant for fittings

-Attend regular meetings with act directors and circus director

-Manage and supervise a costuming assistant

-Recruit, manage and supervise parent, kid and staff volunteers

-Attend weekly mini-performances on site during camp hours

-Demonstrate organization and time management skills

-Work effectively under time constraints and pressures

-Maintain safe, clean and welcoming workspace/costume shop

-Collaborate and communicate with teaching artists, designers and director

-Set up, maintain and supervise costume area during the performance

-Dress performers during the performance

-Clean-up of workspace at the conclusion of the program

-Return and organize all costumes in Oddfellows storage 

-Creativity a must

-Previous costuming experience required

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Oddfellows Teen Rep Production

** recommended for ages 12 and up **
In this new play, Agnes Evans is a very ordinary teen-ager, but her younger sister Tilly is an embarrassment – a geeky, shy, awkward girl. When Tilly dies suddenly in a car accident Agnes’s only tie to her sister is a role playing adventure that Tilly left behind. Agnes enters her sister’s fantasy world and learns about who her sister was – while fighting off the real and imagined monsters that plagued Tilly’s short life. Switching between fantasy and reality this contemporary play tells a story of loss, family, identity and acceptance – in an exciting comic book style.
Written By: Qui Nguyen
Directed By: Kristen Palmer
Dates: March 20, 21, 22, 23
Times: 7:30pm & Sunday March 23rd 2pm Matinee
Tickets: Adults $18 Students & Seniors $10
BUY TICKETS HERE! Or call 860.347.614

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Circohony's Circus in Wonderland!

Alice in Wonderland goes to the Circus in this fast-paced, all ages 45 minute show presented by the talented teen performers of Circophony.
"Circus in Wonderland" will be performed
Friday, January 17 at 7:30 pm
Saturday, January 18 at 2 pm and 7:30 pm
at Oddfellows Playhouse
128 Washington Street
Tickets are $10 for adults and $6 for children.
Circophony is a collaboration between Oddfellows Playhouse Youth Theater and ARTFARM. The company, directed by ARTFARM co-founder Dic Wheeler (also the creator and long-time director of the Children's Circus of Middletown), is made up of eight circus performers between the ages of 12 and 17.
"Circus in Wonderland" explores the magical world of Alice in Wonderland through the joy and spectacle of circus. Alice is plunged into a world in which the Mad Hatter, Queen of Hearts, White Rabbit and other iconic characters juggle, stilt, unicycle, clown and perform stunning feats of acrobatics.
It's Alice in Wonderland like you've never seen it before! Bring your kids! Bring your parents! This show has something for everyone.
For more information about the show, which is available for touring through May, 2014, contact ARTFARM atinfo@art-farm.org.
Get your TICKETS HERE or contact Oddfellows Playhouse, (860) 347-6143.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Seeking Actors Grade 6-8 Jr. Rep Production: BUCCANEERS!

For Junior-High Students: Grades 6-9
By Liz Duffy Adams
Directed by: Lorra Webb
Young Enid Arabella longs for adventure and escape from her family’s poverty. She runs away and is captured by a pirate king and his crew of kidnapped children. She summons her courage and wits to lead a mutiny and over-throw their oppressor – only to find herself in charge of a crew with different ideas about what they should do now that they are free – continue a life on the sea or return home to their families?

This new musical, premiered in 2012, is an exciting performance opportunity for young actors to sing, dance, act and be a part of an ensemble that values their voices and talents at any stage of development. Led by long-time Jr. Rep director Lorra Webb this will be a great musical performance experience in a creative, supportive environment.
Performances: April 3,4,5
Instructor: Lorra Webb
Rehearsals being: January 14th, Tuesday & Thursday. 4:30-6:30pm
For more information please call 860.347.6143 or email Kristen@oddfellows.org