Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® is Built To Amaze!® and Bossier City is getting a first-hand look at what it takes to build The Greatest Show On Earth.
There are six performance times scheduled Thursday, June 18, through Sunday, June 21, at the CenturyLink Center. Built To Amaze!® is an extraordinarily engineered circus experience featuring high flying, adrenaline pumping acts and comedic performances that are sure to make you laugh.
Ringmaster Andre McClain leads the way as not only the voice of the show, but the funny and mischievous circus supervisor.
McClain worked hard to become the voice of The Greatest Show On Earth, a journey that began more than a decade ago. With commitment, ambition and perseverance, McClain has become the first Ringmaster to be featured on all three traveling units of Ringling Bros.
“It’s an honor and a privilege to introduce some of the most amazing artists and acts in the world,” McClain said. “Some of them are third, fourth and even fifth, sixth generation circus performers. It’s amazing to see this show come to life every single day.”
In addition to being the Ringmaster, McClain is an accomplished animal trainer, cowboy, rodeo star, country singer and songwriter. His appearance in the ring truly represents a throwback to the origins of a circus Ringmaster.
The most important thing he wants the audience to know is that he loves his job and that they, too, can make their dreams come true with hard work and determination.
“No matter what you want to be, you can do it. I never imagine growing up that I would be the Ringmaster of The Greatest Show On Earth,” McClain said. “I want the people who come into the arena to go home feeling better than when they came in. No matter what you’re going through in every day life, I want you to feel a thousand times better than when you first walked in the door.”
Fortunately, McClain works alongside award-winning comedic clown Davis Vassallo to create the interactive family experience. Other performances are an exciting blend of traditional and modern acts.
Incredible athletes build energy throughout this production with the only basketball game of its kind on unicycles, a graceful husband and wife balancing duo displays the true strength of a woman, a powerful aerial display with high-flying trapeze artists flipping and swinging through the air without the use of a bar or net below, a nail biting crossbow act, motorcycles riding in a steel globe and the legendary elephants.
“There is something everyone can relate to,” McClain said. “It’s all about working together to build a spectacular show. It’s truly amazing from beginning to the end.”
McClain’s love for animals are what brought him to a show in 2002. During a behind-the-scenes chat with some of the clowns, his animal training background caught the attention of show personnel.
In a twist of fate, he was offered a job working with the show’s exotic animal staff. Through the years, McClain’s repertoire expanded from pre-show host to presenting and demonstrating the bond that he has with animals.
McClain’s perseverance led to not only the most recognized role at Ringling Bros., but to also starting a family. He met his wife, Daniele, who also performs with Ringling Bros., and the couple is expecting a child.
“It’s awesome to have your family on the road and in the audience watching you perform,” he said. “This really is the best family entertainment you will find. There are a lot of things to see and experience.”
Performance times are June 18 – 7 p.m.; June 19 – 7 p.m.; June 20 – 11 a.m., 3 p.m. & 7 p.m.; and June 21 – 1 p.m. The party starts an hour before each showtime with the all Access Pre-show, where everyone, young and old, is invited to have some fun. Guests are encouraged to join performers on the arena floor for an opportunity to meet and mingle with the international cast members, learn a few dance moves and even try on some of the costumes. You never know what kind of circus skills you might learn, too.
Opening night tickets start at just $14. All other performance tickets for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Presents Built To Amaze! start at $15. Kids tickets for all performances are just $10. All seats are reserved, and tickets are available by calling 800-745-3000 or the CenturyLink Center Box Office.
Built To Amaze!® brings to life an unforgettable experience that’s bursting with awe-inspiring acts, brightly colored construction equipment and a show that will leave the audience on the edge of their seats. For more information, visit ringling.com.