CirqueLouis has performed at Iroquois Amphitheater the past three years. This weekend, you can watch the circus troupe celebrate the amphitheater’s 80th birthday. | Courtesy of CirqueLouis

This weekend, kids and adults alike are invited to a colorful celebration of Iroquois Amphitheater’s 80th birthday. CirqueLouis, a local circus theater troupe, will be performing a full-length show titled “Happy Birthday” at the venue on Friday and Saturday, July 20-21.

CirqueLouis is a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhanced circus arts training and bringing forth contemporary circus theater, according to its mission statement.

Because of its 501c3 status, co-founder Abbie Springer tells Insider CirqueLouis has the unique ability to have outreach programs. All of the revenue from performances goes to performers and also to the two other branches — the Unicycle Project and Social Circus.

CirqueLouis combines circus arts with theater. | Photo by Brad Cottrell Photography

Springer says the troupe has an ongoing partnership with Iroquois Amphitheater, so they were excited to help celebrate the anniversary.

Since the founding three years ago, CirqueLouis has given two major performances, one at Iroquois and another at the Kentucky Center for the Arts.

Originally, Springer says performing at the Kentucky Center was a five-year goal, but they were able to accomplish it within the first year. 

Springer says most of the company’s core group had been performing years before CirqueLouis was created. She started her journey at UofL with co-founder LynLey Elliot, where they cheered together and did partner stunting. For 20 years, Springer and Elliot have continued to practice acrobatics.

CirqueLouis has remained a Louisville-based troupe, which Springer says is the goal. She explains that all the performers are still based in the city.

“We just have our Louisville roots,” Springer says.

Performances of “Happy Birthday” start at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, July 20-21. Tickets are available online or at the box officer for $16 for adults, $10 for children and students (ages 3-17 or with valid student ID) and free for children 2 and under.

Rebekah Alvey
Louisville native, Alvey is currently pursuing a journalism and Arabic major at Western Kentucky University. In the fall she will be returning to the College Heights Herald as News Editor and previously covered administration and academics on campus. She spent the past five months studying in Aarhus, Denmark, at the Danish School of Media and Journalism where she covered the European Union, abortion laws and world politics. While she loved traveling around Europe for a semester, she is excited to be back and reporting in Louisville.