Circus Sarasota to continue shows despite accident


SARASOTA, Fla. The show must go on.

Circus Sarasota performers continued to rehearse Wednesday several hours after an accident hospitalized five performers.

The troupe was practicing a high-wire pyramid act about 20 to 25 feet in the air when someone allegedly lost their balance. Nik Wallenda, a member of the famed Flying Wallendas, was on the wire, but wasn’t injured, according to a circus spokesperson.

“It’s a Wallenda tradition that generations of high-wire walking where they do not use a net,” said Jennifer Mitchell, managing director of the Circus Art Conservatory.

Out of the five that fell, three were transported to Sarasota Memorial Hospital.

Two of the performers are in critical condition. Another is recovering in the ICU following a lengthy surgery while two others were taken to different hospitals.

There are multiple broken bones and one performer has a traumatic brain injury, doctors said.

“All of us in the industry believe that the show will go on, it must go on, and we’ll be looking how it will go on,” Mitchell said.

Circus Sarasota’s 2017 winter performances will open this Friday and continue as scheduled. It’s unclear whether the pyramid will be a part of future shows.

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