French-American school becomes big top for a day
by Kendra Hartmann
Dec 19, 2012
Just before breaking for the holidays, the students at the San Diego French-American School got a special treat. On Dec. 12 and 13, they gathered in the school’s auditorium for a chance to see a very European tradition: the French circus.
Slightly different from what many Americans think of when they hear the word “circus” (there were no animals, trapeze or death-defying feats), the Tour de Cirque consists of just two performers: husband-and-wife team Marion Achard and Farid Abed.
The small cast and simple sets didn’t hinder the performance. For nearly an hour, Achard and Abed kept the rapt attention of the students with their intricate juggling, tricks and slights of hand. Just when it seemed they couldn’t add another ball or bowling pin to a juggling routine, three more were thrown in. Though the performance, set to music, didn’t contain any dialogue, the story was perfectly told through the actors’ movements and expression.
Achard and Abed brought their show to the United States on a six-month journey of North America by camping car. Traveling with their three young children, they started in eastern Canada, making their way west then south through California. From San Diego, they will eventually travel down through Mexico and up the Eastern Seaboard before they depart back to their native France.