The MCS is an entirely volunteer-run organization with no staff members. It was started by several of our current and past board members. The MCS Board continues to make policies for the circus space, while taking into account feedback from MCS members, instructors, and frequent participants.
Yes, and yes! The Madison Circus Space is a registered Wisconsin 501(c)(3) nonprofit, and any donations you make to the MCS are entirely tax-deductible.
Yes! Although the Madison Circus Space has a small operating budget, it is in our mission to make circus as accessible as possible to everyone who would like to participate. As such, we provide many free and low-cost activities, and we have a scholarship fund that can be used to cover any activity taking place at MCS. Here is a list of all our most affordable weekly activities:
- Aerial Club (for aerialists with some prior experience), Sundays 11am-noon, $10
- Madison Area Jugglers (juggling club), Sundays 2-4pm, FREE
- Wheel Club (for Cyr wheelers of all levels and German wheelers with some prior experience), Sundays 4-6pm, $10
- Hoop/Flow Jam (for hoop or flow artists of all levels), Sundays 6-8pm, $5 and FREE once a month
- Various MCS performances, dates vary, admission on a sliding-scale donation basis
The short answer is, if you want to do circus, you can. The biggest limits that exist are probably in your mind rather than in your body. At MCS, we believe circus is for everyone. Some classes and activities do have age limits, but those are set mostly because of reasons like insurance stipulations and equipment size or availability. We have lots of classes and activities for beginners and welcome them with open arms! Circus is one of the best ways to build strength, endurance, flexibility, and overall body awareness.
If you have an injury or disability, the chances are good that we can still accommodate you, but it is best if you write to your instructor or firstname.lastname@example.org ahead of time so that we can plan for making your activity as safe and fun for you as possible. Even if your injury is minor, you should ALWAYS let your instructor know about it during the warm-up or before class starts.
Don’t see a class or activity for you in our list of offerings? Email us at email@example.com and describe what you have in mind. We can probably make it happen!
The American Circus Educators (ACE) Circus Arts Safety Program was “created with the ideal of having all circus training spaces in the United States be able to demonstrate to the public that they are committed to continually improving their approach to safety, regardless of the population they serve.” It is a recognition program for circus arts training spaces that involves an extensive application process, a multi-day on-site visit from a highly qualified safety consultant, and follow-up feedback. Once a training space has gone through the process and been approved, it becomes an “ACE Recognized Program.” The Madison Circus Space is proud to be one of several ACE Recognized programs in the nation!
There are a bunch of great ways to stay informed about what’s happening with us!
If you know you are interested in a particular class or activity, it’s best to write directly to the instructor who runs that class. Instructor contact information is available on each class page.
If you are interested in MCS activities in general, it’s a good idea to check out our Facebook page, which is frequently updated with new information. First “Like” the page, then click “Follow” (next to the “Like” button) to receive updates in your feed.
You can also sign up for our e-newsletter, where we regularly send out updates and announcements about classes and events. Scroll down to the bottom right on our main page, where you can fill in your contact information to sign up for the newsletter.