The Falling and the Catching
Duo trapeze act
Two women fall in love (and navigate the fear and intimacy that follows) ten feet in the air. A duet on one trapeze.
- Performances: Sir Cupcake’s Queer Circus Goes Back In Time (Portland, OR), Tell It Slant: A Feminist Cabaret (Tangle Movement Arts, Philadelphia), Topsy Turvy (San Francisco)
Duo trapeze act
“Frolic” offers a glimpse of a playful, intimate, and enduring friendship, an ode to those with whom we can be our most joyful, open, and trusting selves.
- Performances: Bindlestiff Family Cirkus’ Third Coast Cabaret (Chicago Contemporary Circus Festival), Golden Karl International Festival (Riga, Latvia), Topsy Turvy (San Francisco),Timelines (Tangle Movement Arts, Philadelphia)
The Way Things Are
Solo handbalancing act
A solo act combining handbalancing on canes with contemporary ballet, in which a woman is torn between leaving or staying in a difficult relationship.
- Performances: Circus Spectacular (Brattleboro, VT), HOT! Festival (Dixon Place, NYC), Topsy Turvy (San Francisco)
Megan Gendell has performed circus and dance professionally in NYC and around the U.S. since 2007, starting out with the Brooklyn ensemble LAVA and currently performing solo handbalancing and duo trapeze nationally and internationally, including at the Chicago Contemporary Circus Festival and the Golden Karl international circus festival in Riga, Latvia in 2015. She is a graduate of NECCA’s Professional-Track Training Program, and in 2014 she co-created an evening-length ensemble circus-theater show, Tinder & Ash, in Montreal through a TOHU residency; the show was most recently presented by SummerStage in NYC in August 2015.
As a soloist Megan specializes in handbalancing, solo and duo trapeze, and aerial rectangle; she is equally at home as an ensemble member performing partner acrobatics, hoop diving, tumbling, contemporary ballet, modern and postmodern dance, and improvisation. Megan’s movement combines grace from her extensive ballet background with virtuosity from her intensive circus training, resulting in performance that is inventive, powerful, and still warm and inviting.
Megan transferred her dance skills to the realm of circus in 2004, and since then has trained in flying and static trapeze, duo trapeze, handstands, partner acrobalance, rope, contortion, tumbling, hoop diving, and more at New England Center for Circus Arts (coaches Elsie and Serenity Smith, Aimee Hancock, Sellam Ouahabi), San Francisco’s Circus Center (coaches Lu Yi, Serchmaa Byamba, Elena Panova), and through private training in Montreal (coaches Yury Bozyan, Chloe Farah, Jerome LeBaut).
Megan’s movement and performance experience began with her first dance class at age five; she went on to study at the residential pre-professional dance high school Virginia School of the Arts and to pursue training at summer intensive programs at Hartford Ballet and BalletMet, and in Penango, Italy. While she focused on ballet, she also studied rhythm tap, jazz, modern, African, Flamenco, folk, Irish step, and character dance, in addition to composition, acting, yoga, Pilates, figure skating, and gymnastics throughout her teen, college, and adult years, performing many times each year. In college Megan was captain of the nationally ranked Columbia University Dance Team; the National Dance Association awarded her All-American and Top Gun Leaps and Turns in 2000.