A Typical Day & OVERVIEW OF CIRCUS LIFE
General Schedule of Spark 2016 (subject to change)
Day 1: first meeting in Bangkok (BKK)
Days 2 – 3: run through of acts, costume check, group choreography, etc
Day 4: shopping missions, overnight bus to Mae Sot
Mae Sot Intensives
Day 5: settling in at Bahn Thai, Mae Sot orientation tour, continuation of group work
Day 6: Preparations for Intensive 1
Day 7-11: Intensive 1
Day 12: off
Day 13-17: Intensive 1
Day 18: Public Show 1
Day 19-20: Reset and prepare for Intensive 2
Day 21-25: Intensive 2
Day 26: off
Day 27-31: Intensive 2
Day 32: Public Show 2
Planned Daily Schedule for Mae Sot Intensives
07:30 – 08:30 rise & shine, breakfast, personal time
08:30 – 11:00 team meeting, group training, prop creation, etc
11:00 – 13:00 personal time/lunch
13:00 – 14:30: continuation of morning work/load truck/transport to school
14:30 – 17:00 intensive program
18:00 – 19:00 wrap-up & preview of next day
Though the main activity of the day is our intensive program, there is much to be done to support that program – building props for the students, planning teaching strategies, shopping for materials and supplies, rehearsing together. Don’t expect to do much sightseeing or lounging during the month we’re together.
Day 1: Transit to Samui
Day 2: Show and workshop at local school
Day 3: Fundraiser show at beach resort
Day 4: transport to Koh Phan Gan (KPG)
Day 5: Fundraiser show/auction at The Sanctuary
Day 6: Workshops
Day 7: Relax
The days are busy. You’ll be cramming in performances, rehearsals, other circus duties, even eating and sleeping, too, into a schedule that varies day to day. It is important to use your time wisely, which may mean deferring personal needs or social time in order to get circus duties finished, especially when they affect other members’ ability to do their tasks.
Realise that you will have three main responsibilities: teaching, performance, and other roles in the troupe (management, roustabout, etc). They are equally important overall though sometimes one will be more prominent than another.
Circus life is a bit like high school. Please arrive to class and meetings on time and prepared, use the toilet before you leave for a show, be ready with all of your required items when we load the truck. Organise your food so that you are well fuelled at the right times. A breakfast of muesli and coconut milk in your room while dressing, for example.
Be respectful of schedules. Thailand is famous for being relaxed about the clock, but “Thai time” does not apply to us. We can’t be late for shows and sessions because keeping kids waiting is not ok. Sometimes they keep us waiting…that is ok.
Conserve your energy. If you give 140% in the morning, you may be too exhausted to participate in the afternoon. 100% is sufficient, maybe do even a little less when necessary. Know your limits. And get enough sleep every night.
Arrive in Thailand early. Plan to arrive at least a few days before the project starts. There are myriad cures for jetlag, but the only real one is time. Figure one day for every two timezones you cross until you are adjusted to local time. Come a week before the fun begins and adjust to the warm temperature, get over jetlag, and/or detox from alcohol and drugs (which are not permitted at the circus). And you can do your costume shopping in BKK, too.
Days off are infrequently scheduled. If you need time off for any reason, from a “mental health day” to doing a visa run, you should simply ask! We’ll work around your need as best we can. It is hard to decide to take time off when you want to contribute fully to the team, but it is essential that you look out for your own health and happiness, too. Don’t burn out.