DiscoverCircus Stories
Circus Stories

Circus Stories

Author: Callie Biggerstaff & Mark Renaudin

Subscribed: 14Played: 558


A circus history podcast exploring topics like, "How and WHY do Clowns paint their faces", "Who was the first ever Human Cannonball act", "What are common Circus Superstitions" and so much more! So step right up and join your host Callie B, as she shares with friend, comedian and co-host Mark, various stories from circus history. Complete with decoded circus lingo, fun circus facts and a sprinkling of fiction. Theme song by The Cooties.
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30 Episodes
In our season 1 wrap up we explore the classic physical comedy gag commonly associated with  circus  and clowning, but this sticky slapstick act transcends circus and spread to mainstream by way of the silver screen.  We discuss the differences between circus and "hollywood" pie throwing, some famous pie fights, and the integral rules in the art of pie throwing.Watch Mr. Flip ( 1909 ): the show (
Enjoy this delicious episode full of fun origin stories from your favorite circus and carnival treats. Some more delicious than others and we found that the circus is great at improvising when it comes to concessions! We also learned that America loves to fry stuff,  but how we arrive at that conclusion is always an adventure.Support the show (
In this high flying episode we plunge head first into the famous  generational circus family The Zacchini's best known for their thrilling double cannon ball act that spanned nearly 7 decades and toured world wide.   Listen to find out their secrets and all their wild adventures and unfortunate accidents along the way as they perfect the cannon technology allowing them to soar farther than any cannon act before them!!Enjoy the video (link below) of the performance in  action and visit our instagram for more images!!  @circus.stories the show (
We explore a bit of history not often uncovered - high platform horse diving !!! We also explore the life and adventures of one of the most famed female horse divers Sonora Webster Carver, who was the inspiration for popular Disney film  'Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken' (1991) However we discuss so much more to Sonora's story that was not included in the film!  Support the show (
Number two skidooo. This will all makes sense after you have a listen. In our Minisode #2 where we asked YOU the listeners,  to send in some of your favorite, scariest or most memorable Circus Stories and Callie B also shares one of many epic circus memories of her own AND another gem to share... a family story released from the Vault!Support the show (
Circus in Film + TV

Circus in Film + TV


In this riveting episode Callie and Mark do an exploration of Circus and Circus Life as represented in main stream media, namely film and television and Callie's uses popular pieces of media, old and new, that feature Circus and how accurately these media works capture the Circus, some common circus film tropes and how falsely media can represent the circus as well as all the in-betweens.Support the show (
Clown College

Clown College


 Mark and Callie discuss the "World Famous" Ringling Bros Clown College! Are clowns born or are they made?? What do they actually teach at Clown College and how did it start?  Also, what other places offer clown schooling! All that and more silly stuff in this VERY smart episode.  Fun sources discussed in episode:RBBB Clown College - HOW TO BE A CLOWN (1986) Jacobs performing for students 1982 -  Link Application for RBBB Clown College the show (
What do run away trains, circus animal processions, and going to the circus on psychedelics all have in common!!?? Well, not much, but these are  just a glimpse of what our listeners shared with us for our FIRST ever Minisode where we asked YOU the listeners,  to send in some of your favorite, scariest or most memorable Circus Stories and we share a few of them with all of you!! Callie B also shares one of many epic circus memories of her own AND an extra special treat... a family story released from the Vault!Support the show (
Larger than life is a cliché but in this case it is more true than ever! In this episode we discuss General Tom Thumb aka Charles Stratton. One of PT Barnum's first talent finds, and arguably the first international child star... starting at the mere age of 4! We explore Stratton's controversial career beginnings, how he saves PT Barnum from financial hardship, his customized home and sometimes decadent lifestyle and all the fancy friends he makes during his rise to international stardom including personal friendships with Queen Victoria and President Lincoln! Support the show (
When you think Circus, what tasty treats come to mind? In this mouth watering episode we are discussing a brief history on a few fan favorites often served at a traditional Circus ...cotton candy, popcorn, peanuts and so much more! We also explore a few Circus inspired  foods  and their origins including the infamous CIRCUS PEANUTS marshmallow candy. You do not want to miss all the details on those confectionary wonders.  Watch Kaboom commercial: Circus Fun commercial : thanks to Mr. Breakfast the show (
We celebrate the one and only Myrtle Corbin and discuss her incredible life AND incredible wage she earned  (get that money girl).  Joined by a very special guest - Krysta Z,  the trio do a dive deep into Myrtle's many life experiences, encounters with curious doctors,  her travels working with "Mr. Circus"  himself - PT Barnum, and her alleged rivals with other sideshow workers.For images we discuss during the episode visit our instagram @circus.storiesSupport the show (
In this episode we explore a brief overview of how the Circus travels and its evolution over the years. We discuss the various methods of travel used world wide, and how some countries deal with their location limitations. We also  take  dive deep into the life on the Ringling Bros Train  - and where it is now!!  It is indeed mostly chooches (trains).Please visit our instagram to see images of the train and more!amazing images of life on the train can be seen in link below: (credit: Stephanie Sinclair) the show (
A sneak peek of our Patreon because it is the season for giving!!  Here is a sample of what you can expect  if you subscribe to the patreon ... get ready for a killer interview with Callie B's father as he recants his time as a kid visiting Jungle Land and seeing Mabel Stark perform,  PLUS  his experience traveling with Circus Vargas in the 1970s,  some scary storm run ins and a few wild animal stories! Check it out and subscribe to  our patreon if you dig what you hear! You won't want to miss it!Support the show (
CLOWN JUSTICE! Learn about the time honored tradition of painting  EGGS -- YAH! You read that right -- Eggs ...  to register one's clown makeup and protect the artist's identity.  This  seriously silly episode covers official clown business practices, info on a famous clown CHURCH and how clowns police within the clown community... resulting in -- you guessed it -- CLOWN JUSTICE!Clowns International: the show (
Get your best clown shoes and a funny pen that squirts water - its time for a clown quiz. We do a medium dive into the origins of clowning.   We discuss  the three different types of clown face paint and where it stems from, we chew on some solid "clown-isms" and show lingo, AND explore when and WHY did people start viewing clowns as "scary".Click the link below if you want to see the scary "laffun" clown Callie B endured growing up the show (
In this flipping rad episode we discuss  how seals AND ...sea lions have become a thing of the past in American circus. We discuss some SERIOUS seal and sea lion cuteness, habitat behavior,  early circus beginnings, their life performing on the road and of course some silly animal shenanigans. These incredibly intelligent and ADORABLE land and sea creatures have shown audiences far and wide how they are still  "Nature's Most Mystifying Creatures" and so smart they can "do everything but talk".Link to the Duss Family Sea Lions performance : the show (
In this episode we move out WEST!!! We explore the wild life and adventures of Annie Oakley, best known for her sharp shooting skills and top billing act with Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show.   Hear about how Annie was requested to shoot at people's faces -- OFTEN, how she helped advance the way film captures motion, her brief run in with a cocaine mishap, and most importantly...her dog Dave and how he played a role in her act.  Saddle up cowpoke and prepared to get blown away by this story ...  and sorry for that pun in advance.Support the show (
The Lobster Boy Murders

The Lobster Boy Murders


All we gotta say is WHOA! In our devilish episode 13, we merge the two best things; Circus/Sideshow and True Crime.  We explore the unbelievable murders and trials that centered around Grady Stiles Jr.  AKA "The Lobster Boy".  This dude is a real SOB and trigger warning - this episode is a real life horror movie. You have been warned.  Also, most events in the story take place  in Florida, you have been double warned. Support the show (
Gooble Gobble, Gooble Gobble -   One of us, One of us ...Join us for this BEHEMOTH episode as we deep dive into the controversy that swirled around the cult classic, Tod Browning's 1932 film FREAKS! Callie B and Mark are joined by sideshow aficionado, Krysta Z as the trio explore Browning's film career; it's ups and downs and where Browning found the "suggestion" for the film. We also chat about the film's casting process,  production struggles, scathing critic reviews and more; you do not want to miss any of it!! Support the show (
Today's episode we explore the illusive act - The Hair Hang! Yeah! The act of quite literally hanging by one's hair. No tricks or magic here, this act is legit. BUT how the heck do these performers do it!? And what is their hair care regimen? ALSO does it hurt? All of this and more will be answered!Support the show (
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