Jena McShane Photography
Violet Defiant is a contemporary circus artist who specializes in acrobatic and lyric storytelling performances and full-length shows. Violet performs duo and solo static trapeze, swinging trapeze, partner acrobatics, hand balancing, and contortion for theater shows, art openings, galas, festivals, children's events, and international sporting events. She has performed with the New England Center for Circus Arts' Beta Nights (Brattleboro, VT), Bindlestiffs Open Stage Variety Show (New York, NY), Bird's Eye View Circus (Toledo, Ohio), The Ann Arbor Aviary (Ann Arbor, Michigan), Windsor Sky Society (Windsor, Ontario, Canada), Aerial 4Me (Grand Rapids), and The Striped Circus (Ferndale, Michigan).
Violet is interested in circus projects that blend theatrical storytelling, spoken poetics, and the expressiveness of acrobatics to play with ideas that matter. Her zine and consent-based workshop "Consent Games for Circus" recently won the Amanda Dubey-Zerka Award for Volunteer Excellence through The Firecracker Foundation. Violet teaches consent-based circus classes for youth and adults. She brings body awareness, grace, and technique to her artistic practice. A philosophy of play informs all her work.
Most recently, Violet has been training swinging trapeze, static trapeze, and hand balancing at NECCA through private instruction and the weekend immersion program. Trained in gymnastics since she was 5 years old, she competed at a high level for ten years. She began diving, specializing in springboard and platform diving as a college athlete.
Violet co-created and performed with Violet and Fortuna, an artistic collaboration with circus artist and sculptor Erin Garber-Pearson that ran between 2013-2016. Together they made the show LACES, a 45-minute acrobatic story about a pink mansion in the Midwest and its odd inhabitants.
Contact Violet Defiant to book a performance or circus instruction in your town!