Step right up and join this social justice show

By Merle Exit

The circus is coming to town — sort of.

Circus Amok, a New York City-based circus cum theater company, whose mission is to provide free public art that addresses issues of social justice, decamps at Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City Saturday.

“Circus Amok is about a one ring, no animal circus that tours the parks of New York City,” said Jennifer Miller, performer, director and founder of the group. “We have been coming to Socrates Sculpture Park for years. It’s very welcoming and was able to do our dress rehearsals last week.”

Celebrating its 20th season, Circus Amok has brought its funny, queer, caustic, political spectacles to neighborhoods throughout the city. Circus Amok blends traditional circus skills such as tightrope walking, juggling, acrobatics, stilt walking and clowning with experimental gender-bending performance art and improvisational techniques.

“There are seven people in the circus ring itself as well as a band of seven musicians and a couple of roustabouts,” said Miller. “With a social justice theme, this year’s topic is about climate change.”

Audiences can expect to encounter a heroine at a climate change crossroads.

After a mystifying and bewildering vision of the earth at two disparate ends, Circus Amok’s desperate circus performer and former operatic contralto must act in haste in order to save the earth from plunging off the tightrope of doom into the pit of big box capitalism.

Two performances are scheduled, one at 1 p.m. and the other at 4 p.m.

Seating is on the grass. However, if you wish to bring a chair, you will be seated in the rear. The show is free of charge and open to all ages.

Socrates Sculpture Park is located at 32-01 Vernon Blvd. in Long Island City.

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