Our founder and executive producer, Dave Willacker has enjoyed a long career in performance arts. Dave began his career in the 1st grade when he was cast as the ugly duckling in the school play. Dave was scarred from this experience and had many nightmares about ducks as a child. Although his first experience in theater was somewhat traumatic, many small theatrical roles followed throughout Dave’s childhood.
It’s also worth noting that in the 6th grade Dave wrote and directed his school’s Christmas play. While Dave’s writing is no threat to Charles Dickens, Dave continues to write to this day including the murder mystery scripts for the Cincinnati Circus Company
Dave attended McNicholas High School and participated in their theater program. While at McNicholas HS, Dave wrote several pieces and received several awards. After high school, Dave began acting at the Ohio Renaissance Festival and learned to juggle.
Over the next four years Dave’s passion for acting and juggling continued to blossom – soon Dave was being requested hundreds of times a year! Dave began teaching others how to perform and in 1999 Dave began booking other performers. In 2003, Dave incorporated his talent agency as “Juggler Dave and Friends” and it continued to grow. Also in 2003 Dave was asked to perform in Toronto Canada and when he returned, he was the first to begin performing as a living statue in the Cincinnati area.
In 2005 Dave brought aerial acrobatics to Cincinnati and his girlfriend Joanne became one of Cincinnati’s first aerial acrobats. That same year Dave was asked to perform in the movie Dumbstruck.
In 2009 Dave brought flying trapeze to Cincinnati and opened Cincinnati’s first flying trapeze school.
In 2010 Dave and the Cincinnati Circus performed on the TLC show Outrageous Kid’s parties. In 2010 Dave and Joanne got married on their trapeze. Dave and Joanne were also asked to appear on The Newlywed Show, where they won. That same year the Cincinnati Circus began donating to the Ronald McDonald house.
In 2011 Dave directed and produced the Cincinnati Circus’ first touring show.
In 2013 The Cincinnati Circus became an official sponsor of the Dragon Fly foundation.
In 2014 Dave directed and produced the Cincinnati Circus’ Globe of Death Motorcycle Stunt Show.
In 2015 Dave appeared in a tv commercial for Glad Press and Seal.
In 2016 Dave and the Cincinnati Circus appeared in the reality show The Valley.
Today Dave functions as the artistic director and executive producer for the Cincinnati Circus. He continues to write their scripts, train their talent and direct their shows. Dave is often asked to guest speak for groups about business management and circus.
The Cincinnati Circus Continues to grow…