November Instructors of the Month | Morgan Goldberg & Gonzo
Morgan Goldberg & Gonzo
Morgan started performing and training circus arts as a child at Wavy Gravy’s circus and performing arts camp, Camp Winnarainbow. Her focus included aerials, acrobatics, theater and dance. Morgan continued her study of theater in college graduating from The Evergreen State College with a BA in Theater in 2005. She directed and performed in numerous original works on as well as off campus with the Olympia Theater Project. During her time in school she also studied Capoeira Angola a Brazialian dance and martial arts form and performed at festivals such as The Seattle Folk Life Festival and The Olympia Arts Walk.
When Morgan moved to NYC in 2006 she began her practice of yoga and returned to her circus roots by teaching after school programs for Circus Minimus and attending the Circus Yoga teacher training. Here she also began her dedicated practice of prop manipulation. She started with fire props including poi and contact staff and later focused on contact juggling and toss juggling. In NYC she began doing fire performance and face painting professionally.
When she moved to Portland in 2007 she began performing with Flamebuoyant Productions, Salem Polynesian Dance and The Rose City Vaudeville. In 2009 Morgan started her company Motion Magic and began teaching circus in schools and performing full time. She began developing her solo clown act which she has been performing for the last 6 years at kids birthday parties, libraries and school assemblies. Morgan joined Clowns With Out Boarders in 2015, traveling to Chiapas Mexico. During this time she also continued to develop as a solo fire performer and won Portland’s fire entertainer of the year in 2012.
In Portland she also began working closely with Randy Schless, innovating the world of partner contact staff. They have gained recognition around the world with this work and have been performing, teaching and selling props at juggling and flow arts festivals for the past five years as The Flow Factory. Last year they were seen performing their newest act in The Flow Show in San Francisco, at Kinetic Fire, and Pacific Fire Gathering. Morgan has also been an integral part of organizing Pacific Fire by producing both their flowcase and fire show. Her newest project is a full length theatrical circus production called Out of the Box, that she is producing, writing and directing. She is very excited about bringing her passion for circus to the theater.
2014 appearances- Fire Drums, Mad Skillz, Portland Juggling Festival, Victoria Juggling Festival, MOPS Pacific Fire Gathering, Oregon Country Fair, Motion Magic in Portland Schools.
2015 appearances- Flow Show SF, Kinetic Fire, Clowns With Out Borders Chiapas Mexico, Fire Drums, Mad Skillz, Circus Camp Out, The European Juggling Convention, Oregon Country Fair, Motion Magic in Portland Schools, Ecstatic Fire
Upcoming Appearances- Ecstatic Fire- a public fire show in Portland, She plans on organizing workshops in Seattle this winter, EJC 2016 is on the horizon, and will be booking more 2016 gigs soon.
Gonzo’s path into the Flow Arts began one day when he reached out to Juan Guardiola and asked him if he would teach him how to spin. He said yes, and that’s the story. That moment was almost four years ago now and was definitely the most important phone call he’s ever made to date. Gonzo started teaching people what he learned almost immediately. As soon as he learned how to do a trick, he felt a calling to gift that knowledge onto someone else. He started traveling with Juan and The Chicago Fire Technicians, who he now considers family. Everywhere they went, anyone that approached him was the recipient of a dragon staff lesson. He started attending events and retreats a couple years ago and would spin my dragon all day. Even though he felt his knowledge was limited, he would show anyone and everyone that was interested how to do the things he could do.
For a little over a year now, he’s been traveling and teaching workshops at different events around the country, trying to reach as many people as possible. In fact, he’s been to every FAI event this year. His goal is to explore what is currently possible and done with the dragon staff. I want to push the boundaries of something that seems so simple. He has nothing but time to practice and manifest the numerous ideas he has in his head.
His biggest influences will always be the fire technicians. They encouraged him relentlessly the way only true friends do. They made him believe in himself even when he didn’t want to. The Chicago and St. Louis crew taught him more about life and object manipulation than anyone will ever know. This community and all his new friends keep him in awe. It would be nearly impossible for someone to hang around these retreats and feel any lack of inspiration.
This year in 2015, you probably saw him at telluride fire festival, flame, summer camp music festival, kinetic fire, fire drums, camp fire, pacific fire, flow motion chiller, and i had more but had to cancel my whole fall circuit due to unforeseen circumstances.
Last year, 2014 he did Fahrenheit and wildfire as well as performing at electric forest, phases of the moon, and summer camp. some other events that are slipping his memory
Next Year, things will consist of teaching at every flow retreat he gets accepted to, performing with the people that he loves, and traveling as much as humanly possible.
He’s excited about his pursuit of a lifestyle that consists of having all day free to practice and learning whatever strikes his fancy. Touring on the road and making a living through his passion is his future dream and reality. He’s excited to meet all the people, so he can continue teaching and learning new things. He wants to see all the places and learn all the things, a true Sensei.
Poppe hails from Bloomington, IN where she is an active member in the flow arts community through helping to organize local events, choreograph routines, perform, teach, and mentor.
When she isn't spinning a prop or doing acrobatics, she does web design and development, social media, and content strategy. She hopes to use these skills to help elevate flow artists, the community, and the craft.