What we do 


A love of dancing and acrobatics has led to Aimee Nicole Harrison leaving home twice to join a circus and moving to Spain to join an Irish Dance Troupe.
Now the 32-year-old has launched her own venture travelling all over the country to put on circus skilled themed parties and workshops called The Greatest Parties.
And fate has played its fair share along the way.
Aimee, from Syston, was born with cataracts.
"My parents wanted me to do something to build up my confidence, so they started me in a dance school when I was eight,” said Aimee. “Two things stood out for me – tap dancing and acrobatics. I loved them and was forever practising.”

She was fortunate to join a circus in her twenties.
“I think I was just looking for dancing work and came across an advert in a dancers’ forum, applied and got the job. The circus was called The Australian Super Circus and it toured around Ireland.

“The job involved dancing and doing acrobatics as well. I loved that, it was really fun.”

That job lasted a few months before Aimee went over to Spain to work in an Irish dancing show which toured all the resorts.
Her second job in a circus came purely by chance.
“It was January and everyone was doing their New Year resolutions. I put on Facebook that I was going to make a resolution that I was going to say yes to every opportunity. I think I had just seen the film Yes Man.
“People started putting jokes on my status like “give me your bank details” and someone commented “will you run away with the circus?”
“Loads of people said “she’s already done that before” and someone said “I know and I need her.”
“I got in touch with her and joined the Great British Circus which toured all over England.”
It was a good move for Aimee for, apart from dancing and a bit of acrobatics, she was involved in helping to sell merchandise like spinning plates and juggling balls.
“The clown, who was next to me, showed me how to spin plates and to juggle to pass away the time and other circus skills. It’s these skills I have put into my workshops.“

When Aimee came back home from Spain she got a nine to five job working at the Ministry of Justice and the Family Court using her touch typing skills which she was taught at school because of her cataracts.
“I realised that just wasn’t me. I just felt like a bird trapped in a cage and knew I had to find something else to do,” added Aimee.
Opportunity didn’t take long to come knocking on her door.

“My next door neighbour runs a cheerleading school and she asked me if I wanted to do something with her. I jumped at the opportunity. I was teaching acrobatics and also at a dance school as well, and last year someone approached me to run circus skills workshops in primary schools.
“ I go all over the country teaching circus skills in schools. People kept asking me about birthday parties so I have now launched The Greatest Parties and offer circus skills parties and workshops all over the country. We cater for birthdays, weddings, school workshops, after school clubs and fetes.”
And, although the parties have only just been launched, she has had a huge response so far.
“I can’t tell you how overwhelmed I am at the response,” she said. “It really has been amazing.”

One of Aimee’s circus workshops will take place in St Mary’s Church, Melton Mowbray, on May 11th from 10.30am until 12noon as part of its monthly Saturday activities mornings.
The morning has the theme “Could you be The Greatest Showman?”
Amongst the things Aimee will be teaching people will be plate spinning, juggling, balancing beams and also how to ride a unicycle!

“My workshops are not just for children. It’s a bit of fun for everyone,” added Aimee.
“I feel like since I came home about three or four years ago it took me a while to know what I wanted to do next, but now it is exciting times ahead.
“The biggest thing I would say to everyone is never give up. If you haven’t got a clue what you want to do with your life it will eventually fall into place.”

Phil Balding, 29/03/2019

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