The New England Center For Circus Arts Invites Everyone Under The Big Top

by Phoenix Leigh

NECCA performers in action

Tucked away in funky, small-town Brattleboro, VT, is a world-class circus school. New England Center for Circus Arts, aka NECCA, was founded by identical twins Elsie Smith and Serenity Smith Forchion in 2007. Located on the sisters’ family farm, NECCA has since grown into a renowned training center where students converge from all over the U.S. and internationally to learn the ropes. Graduates of the school’s three-year professional training program, ProTrack, go on to perform with Cirque du Soleil, Las Vegas shows, cruise ships, and more. While public classes in aerials, acrobatics, and juggling draw recreational enthusiasts of all ages. 

Founders and sisters, Elsie and Serenity Smith

What makes NECCA special, is its inclusive spirit. “The traditional circus had places for people who didn’t otherwise have homes,” says Elsie. “The clowns could come be clowns. Women could be strong and have their own income. Now, you can come as whatever freak you are, and step through the door.” 


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Founded in 1993, BUST is the inclusive feminist lifestyle trailblazer offering a unique mix of humor, female-focused entertainment, uncensored personal stories, and candid reporting that tells the truth about women’s lives.

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