A photograph featuring two peaks at the top of a circus tent. The peaks are a bright scarlet colour and the tips are a mustard yellow. Above the tent, the sky is bright blue with a subtle dusting of white clouds.

Round Table —
Contemporary Circus And The Crisis:

Training And Educational Contexts

Saturday, June 26, 2021 | 11:00 - 12:30

Live discussion on Zoom; spoken in French with live LSQ interpretation. There will also be live translation from French to English available in the chat.

(Chair: Marie-Eve Skelling Desmeules) Tim Roberts, Karine Saroh, Sarah Poole, Louis-Patrick Leroux  & Karine Lavoie

Join Now in Room B

The session Contemporary circus and the crisis: training and educational contexts, organized by Marie-Eve Skelling Desmeules, will provide an opportunity to discuss the impacts of the pandemic on circus training in different contexts, the initiatives that have been put forward throughout the pandemic, and the ways of adapting and even rethinking the circus, its teaching, and its learning today. Participating in the session will be Karine Lavoie (Cirque Hors Piste), Louis-Patrick Leroux (Concordia University), Sarah Poole (National Circus School of Montreal), Tim Roberts (École de cirque de Québec) and Karine Saroh (Ésacto’Lido, École supérieure des arts du cirque, France).


Tim Roberts is the Executive Director of the École de cirque de Québec. He has also held the position of Pedagogical Director of Professional Training at the National Centre for Circus Arts (London) and at the École de cirque de Québec. He is also vice-president on the board of directors of En Piste and has been a member of the board of directors of the European Federation of Professional Circus Schools (FEDEC) for 21 years, including 6 years as president and 4 years as vice-president.

Karine Saroh is a doctor of performing arts and in charge of research and continuing education at the Toulouse School of Circus Arts, Ésacto’Lido. She is currently in charge of the research program L’Artiste de cirque en entrainement. She has co-edited two books on circus dramaturgies (Cnac, 2020) and on wire and slackline practices (Cnac, 2020). She has also published a research notebook on the pedagogy of the wire based on interviews with Isabelle Brisset (Cnac, ICiMa chair, 2020).

Karine Lavoie is the Executive Director of Cirque Hors Piste. She has more than 20 years of experience in social circus both as a teacher in different countries around the world, a training consultant for Cirque du Soleil, and a speaker. She has worked in the field of psychosocial intervention with people who are homeless or living in extreme poverty, and has worked as circus artist in various events and festivals before devoting herself entirely to the development of social circus in Montreal and Canada.

Louis Patrick Leroux is a Professor and Associate Dean of Research at Concordia University. His research focuses on Québec theatre, contemporary circus and research-creation. He has also taught for the past 8 years at National Circus School in Montreal. Recent books: Contemporary Circus (Routledge) with K. Lavers et J. Burtt; Cirque Global: Québec’s Expanding Circus Boundaries (McGill-Queen’s) with C. Batson; Le jeu des positions. Discours du théâtre québécois (Nota Bene) with H. Guay.

Sarah Poole is an MA student at Concordia University, studying pedagogy in circus. She has worked in the aerial dance and contemporary circus milieu as an aerialist, teacher, and choreographer since her arrival in Montréal in 2003. She has taught aerial disciplines in the college program at the National Circus School since 2007, is a specialist coach for Cirque Éloize and Cirque du Soleil, and regularly teaches at international aerial dance festivals.