Clown Alley, the Troupers who keep the Smirkus tent ringing with laughter, were put to the test in between shows in Great Barrington by the yearly tradition of the Boss Clown Olympics. Boss Clown is a competition of wacky games based around clowning skills, such as putting on makeup without a mirror!
“Boss Clown” is a traditional role across circuses which is typically given to the most senior clown and was adopted by Smirkus in the early 2000s. For many years, an obvious senior leader emerged from the clowns to serve as 1Boss Clown. But then, one year, there were two people. Both were seasoned clowns, both were leaders, and it was the last year in Smirkus for both. Who would be Boss Clown? To remedy this, the Boss Clown Olympics were created.
Now the Boss Clown Olympics serve less to decide the Boss Clown and more as a fun activity on tour. This year, the first challenge required the competing clowns to sit with their backs to the crowd, makeup bags in front of them, and recreate Troy Wunderle’s make-up on their own face from memory. After full assessment, Sam Gurwitt was announced as the winner for this event for a grand total of -drumroll please…- zero points. As you can see, this is a highly competitive event!
The next event was a team challenge which involved clowns having to pie themselves in the most creative manner and then crab-walk, blinded by pie, to their partner. This, of course, was followed by a challenge of who could most thoroughly clean their partner using only the water of a single balloon. The final challenge was to create a dance or rap in appreciation of Smirkus Founder Rob Mermin.
At the end of the day, all points aside, Sam Gurwitt was declared the Smirkus 2014 Boss Clown! It’s Sam’s fourth and final year touring with Smirkus. He’s the only clown graduating out of the Alley this year and he’ll be greatly missed!
Come see the clowns goof around in Anchors Away for Atlantis this Friday and Saturday at 2pm and 7pm AND Sunday at 11am and 4pm in Waltham, MA!