meSSeS is an evening-length family-friendly solo circus-theatre-dance performance, winner of "Spirit of the Fringe" at the 2022 Elgin Fringe Festival. The show is affordable and adaptable to nearly any length and performance space.
janoah...anygoodjokes? juggles several tasks simultaneously: performing & teaching! During this (optionally interactive) experience YOU learn to juggle while you watch. In moments between acts, Janoah engagingly guides the audience through the essentials: throwing, catching and (of course) messy-ing up!
Part performance, part workshop, entirely entertaining, Janoah immerses audiences of all ages in a whimsical exploration of metaphor. Precarious unicycling, shimmering puppetry, jaw-dropping juggling, mesmerizing motions, meticulously prepared hot beverages … Janoah tosses together art forms to tell a tale of learning & labor, emerging ecstatically from a haphazard pile of props.
And (of course!) what circus would be complete without popcorn & banana peels?
Janoah Bailin (ze/zir), aka janoah…anygoodjokes? creates and performs energetic, stimulating and educational shows for family audiences with zir unique blend of circus, puppetry, story and dance. Ze originally learned to unicycle in the empty corridors of zir middle school, practicing after-hours. Janoah grew up juggling with the Suspenders Juggling Troupe in Falmouth (MA) then traveled New England with the Circus Smirkus Big Top Tour. Ze graduated in 2014 from College of the Atlantic, focusing in performance and movement. Janoah now coaches the Gym Dandies Children’s Circus of Scarborough (ME), as well as the Children's Circus of Middletown (CT). In 2016 ze helped form the Living Room Dance Collective in Portland (ME), a space devoted to contemporary movement and performance. In the summer of 2019 ze toured SpinS, a full-length solo circus-puppetry performance, across the Canadian Fringe Festival circuit, including Montreal, Winnipeg, Edmonton and Vancouver, winning "Best Variety" in London. SpinS has since enjoyed a 12-show run at Maddy's Theatre in the Children's Museum and Theatre of Maine. In May of 2019 Janoah premiered meSSeS, a second full-length circus-dance performance in which the audience learns to juggle during the show. Ze has brought the show to The Dance Complex (Boston), Redfern (Keene NH), Oddfellows Playhouse (Middletown CT), APA's Contact East (Halifax NS), SPACE (Portland ME), as well as the Cincinnati, St. Louis, Indianapolis, Hartford and Elgin Fringe Festivals (where ze won "Spirit of the Fringe" 2022). Janoah has been a resident artist at the Barn Arts Collective in Bass Harbor and Subcircle in Biddeford (ME). Ze has been awarded the 2020 MAC Fellowship in the Performing Arts, NEFA's 2021 Public Art Learning Fund, as well as numerous MAC Project and NEFA Dance Fund grants. Janoah currently performs internationally for festivals, stages and parades, leaving behind a wake of tumbled juggling props.
pc Kelsey Trusty
"Captivating as Janoah's performance was, I also loved watching the audience during the three interactive components. Each time the house lights came up for another scarf juggling lesson, the audience progressively engaged more with each other, strayed and intermingled further from their seats, and reveled in the collective chaos of hundreds of floating scarves."
- Ian Bannon, Executive Director, Mayo Street Arts
"A clowning master class. . . . [Janoah] performs some very original gags and spectacular feats of balancing, but it is in … allowing for some of his stunts to go wrong that his humor shines"
- Wendy Carson, Plays With John and Wendy
pc Haley Deluca Lowell
meSSeS is best performed on a stage with minimum dimensions of:
Width 25' x Depth 15' x Height 15' on a Marley or wood floor.
However, the performance can be adapted to most performance spaces.
The show requires:
- access to electricity
- ability to mount a small popcorn-maker somewhere above the stage
- basic lighting plot and speaker system
Lighting can be as intricate as the venue allows.
pc Kelsey Trusty
Janoah's teaching goes beyond circus, movement and performance. Ze's classes are humanistic, connecting profoundly with students and making the skills relevant. As a professional circus arts educator, Janoah offers workshops for all ages and levels in:
- variety arts (balance, diabolo, etc.)
- equilibrium arts (unicycle, globe, rola bola, wire, etc.)
- creation / performance
Janoah excels in bridging the gap between circus as metaphor and physical experience. Ze makes circus arts accessible, educational and joyful in classrooms from kindergarten through college, as well as for adults. Zir dance training brings the full body to play in zir teaching. Janoah also speaks confidently and eloquently on zir experiences as a self-employed performing artist in talk-back and panel settings.