Circus school helping children's dreams come true

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by CHRISTIE JOHNSON / KING 5 News

KING

Posted on May 15, 2012 at 9:57 AM

The School of Acrobatics and New Circus Arts (SANCA) in Seattle is giving kids in the community a chance to stretch their imaginations and muscles in a unique way.
 
"Here you get to walk on roller balls, jump on trampolines, and ride unicycles," said Aidan Aprile, a 12-year-old circus performer.
 
Aidan and his 9-year-old brother, Luca, are students at SANCA.
 
"You can learn stuff here that you can't learn anywhere else" said Luca.
 
These brothers are acrobats with big dreams. 

"I want to teach here or be in a circus group like Cirque Du Soleil" said Luca.
 
Training at the school does not come cheap and can cost thousands of dollars per child per year.
 
"It has definitely been a big stretch for our family," said Christine Wood, Luca and Aidan's mother.
 
Roughly 20 percent of kids at SANCA are there on scholarship. Since the school opened its doors, it has given out almost $300,000 in tuition assistance.
 
Pediatric nurse practitioner Jo Montgomery co-founded SANCA eight years ago with the vision that no child would ever be turned away because of their financial situation.
 
"I work with generally low-income, high risk kids and I saw that they didn't have a lot of options for exercise," said Jo Montgomery, Executive Director of SANCA.
 
Aidan and Luca's mom says it made quite a difference for her boys.
 
"It's helping them do things that they wouldn't be able to do on just what we can afford on our own," said Wood.
 
And it has given the boys much more than a place to just exercise.
 
"They've learned confidence, performing in front of an audience, and really rising to the occasion" said Wood.
 
The boys appreciate it as well.

"They're a non-profit and I couldn't go here if they weren't," said Luca.
 
And if their professional circus career aspirations do not work out, both boys would like to work with kids at SANCA.
 
"I want to teach here and give something back," said Luca.
 
SANCA is holding its Spring Showcase on Friday, May 18 and Saturday, May 19. All proceeds raised will go towards providing scholarships for kids. For more information visit www.sancaseattle.org.

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