Meet Circus Arts Teacher Erin Lovett Sherman

Fed up with your 9-to-5 and planning to run away and join the circus? Before you pack your leotards, take a breath and acquire some skills. Meet Laconia’s Erin Lovett Sherman, a teacher of all things Big Top. Trapeze? Stiltwalking? Juggling? Toddler through senior? You name it. Sherman has performed and taught in joints like Russia, Lithuania, India, Ecuador, Peru, Canada and all throughout the US. So take a workshop, do a retreat or try some local classes. Even if the circus isn’t hiring, you can be the hit of the next neighborhood yard sale by juggling the crockery while riding someone’s discarded unicycle.

Photo by David Mendelsohn

  • As far back as I can remember I was dancing around the house, creating dance pieces and making shows.
  • I come from a long line of musicians and artists on my dad’s side, and on my mom’s side, an equally long line of teachers, intellectuals and community leaders.
  • Right after college, I started my company ARTSFEST, and continued to tour the country and the world performing, teaching and directing performing arts, while keeping a home base in the Lakes Region.
  • I feel so at home in the air, dancing, spinning through space. It’s truly magical.
  • My husband Michael and I have three boys, Myles, Kameron and Bodhi. Myles and Kameron could both stand on our shoulders and juggle clubs by age 10.
  • They performed with us at the Statehouse for Gov. Sununu last year.
  • Circus arts training is a valuable thing for a performing artist’s resume in this new era of Broadway.
  • You will find circus integrated into many Broadway productions these days, and the fusion is powerful for the audience and for the performers.
  • This past year I was selected to study with Cirque du Soleil’s Cirque du Monde for a teacher’s training in social circus and adapted dance in Montreal.
  • We studied and discussed techniques for developing and teaching programming for at-risk populations.
  • It’s a gift when you can help someone find something in themselves that will empower them to enjoy life more, with a healthier body and mindset.
  • My advice to young artists is to just keep doing what you love, become an expert in it, work harder than you imagine possible, never stop learning, give back to your community, and your work will bring you joy.
  • My grandfather, Rev. Dr. Miller C. Lovett, always lovingly and proudly said to people, “This is my granddaughter who ran away to join the circus!”

Joining the circus isn’t as easy as it seemed back in the days of Toby Tyler, but there are good reasons to develop circus skills, ranging from functional fitness and more graceful movement to social skills (even if you hang around with a bunch of clowns). ARTSFEST of Laconia is a hidden treasure of the Lakes Region, where they teach and demonstrate the magic of aerial dance and other gravity-defying arts. Visit them on Facebook. In the photo above is Sherman with her son Myles (13), and aerialists Morgan Maltais (12) and Addison Herward (9). Husband Michael Manning did the rigging and spotting for the shoot. Special thanks to Elwin, who got the ball rolling.

Categories: Q&A