Zero recently had the pleasure and opportunity to sit down and interview two of Pittsburgh’s great acrobats, Tangent and Doe-Rae! Check out this great interview and make sure you watch the video of these two bendy acrobats! Check out the PCAC’s YouTube Channel to see many more great videos of these two and many other members as well!
Zero: How did you two get into acro?
Tangent: In the summer of 2013, I was trying different styles of yoga at a yoga studio in Philadelphia where I came across this class called Acrobatic Yoga. I tried it and I was hooked ever since.
Doe-Rae: I accidentally took an acro class in February 2015 thinking it was aerial silks. At the end of the class, the instructor and his partner demonstrated an intermediate skill and I was BLOWN AWAY. Needless to say, I was welcomed into the community and progressed from there.
Zero: How long have you two been working as a team?
Tangent: 2.5 years
Zero: How does trust factor into this?
Tangent: Trust, mindfulness, technique, strength, and flexibility are what you need to do acro safely and impressively and have fun with it.
Doe-Rae: Tangent and I are a great combo because we LOVE to push our limits. At the same time, we trust and respect each other enough to communicate when one of us is uncomfortable. It can be difficult to build trust in acro relationships, but he has always been 100% present as a base and a spotter.
Zero: What scares you about working with each other?
Doe-Rae: As we progress, the skills become more dangerous. I’m more concerned about having proper spotting as we train skills.
Tangent: The safety of my flier is the first thing I always have in mind and the thought of possible failing to do so scares me.
Zero: Why do you two work together?
Doe-Rae: We’re best friends!! Even though acro has become a job rather than a hobby, we always giggle and have the most fun.
Tangent: Rachel is lovely; she is one of my best friends; and she is a natural! She is strong, flexible, and fearless. Lastly, she knows the techniques very well and have a very good understanding of her whereabouts when upside down in the air.
Zero: Is there something about Pittsburgh that you like more or less than other towns?
Doe-Rae: I am biased because I grew up here. The people that live in Pittsburgh are genuine and honest. If I lived anywhere else, I’d be bound to miss the greenery and hills.
Tangent: Pittsburgh is beautiful and is the home to most of my best friends.
Zero: How long have you been acro-ing?
Doe-Rae: Almost 3 years
Tangent: About 4 years 8.
Zero: What other things do you two do with circus arts?
Doe-Rae: I’m working towards putting together a hand balancing routine and a slacklining routine
Tangent: Whenever we meet, if there is a place that I can lay down, Rachel jumps on my feet and we acro/play! I also assist Rachel in teaching Acro at Ascend on Tuesday evenings. Rachel is one of the few peoples in Pittsburgh that is certified to teach Acro and I have the privilege to assist her and learn how to teach.
Zero: How do you feel about the PCAC?
Doe-Rae: PCAC is a magical group of people. Acro overlaps with many disciplines- yoga, adventure, outdoors, climbing. I’m so lucky to be welcomed into the circus!
Tangent: PCAC has made me to look at acro from a professional point of view. Before joining PCAC, acro was just a hobby to me. Being professional means taking the beauty of the acrobatic acts into account, doing them more smoothly with less failure, and most importantly having a smile on your face even if you are under a lot of pressure from being on the stage or from the difficulty of the acts. In sum, PCAC has given me a chance to take my practice and art to the next level. Through PCAC, I have met great artists with amazing circus arts. I enjoy being and practice with them.