Chuckles The Clown

By Nikki Justice

Chuckles the Clown has worked for the Tip Top Circus for 5 years, and strives to be the best performer and the star of the show.  Chuckles spends every minute of the day practising his performance to ensure that he is the best he can be.  The circus isn’t just a job for Chuckles, he gets a real satisfaction from performing.

It’s the first live show of the season in 2 weeks, and whilst the rest of the circus are having fun together and relaxing, Chuckles is in the practise tent again perfecting his performance.  Chuckles begins his practice with some juggling skills.  As always he is AMAZING, he doesn’t drop a thing, and manages to keep all of the balls arching effortlessly in the air like a colourful rainbow.

Chuckles then moves on to practice his unicycle routine, again he glides across the floor effortlessly.  Even though his routine is perfect, Chuckles continues to practice into the evening, although he is exhausted.

Just then out of the corner of his eye, Chuckles notices Connie sitting in the corner watching him. Connie is new to the Circus and helps prepare the props for the performance.  Unknown to Chuckles, Connie is often mesmerised by Chuckles’ skills and enjoys watching him perform most evenings.

“What are you doing” asks Chuckles.  “I’m sorry to disturb you” says Connie, “one day I would love to perform like you, but nobody gives me the opportunity to learn any skills, so I like to watch and learn and hopefully one day I will be able to perform just like you”.  Chuckles chuckled, “it takes years of practice and hard work to perfect these skills, you can’t just learn them by watching me”.

With that Chuckles put the unicycle away and headed for the tightrope.  This was always the pinnacle of his performance.  As Chuckles stepped heavily up the ladder towards the tightrope, he was feeling a little frustrated that a newbie felt they could step into his shoes easily when he works so hard constantly.

Connie was still watching Chuckles, she was always excited to see the tightrope walk, she knew it was all about balance and focus.  Chuckles stepped onto the tightrope and began walking effortlessly across the tightrope.

All of a sudden Chuckles lost his footing and couldn’t regain his balance in time, he came tumbling to the ground.

Connie rushed to his side and called for help to ensure that Chuckles was checked over. Chuckles was helped to his feet, but it was clear he was in pain.  Chuckles made his way to his bedroom and thanked Connie for her help.

The following morning, Chuckles called a meeting with the other performers explaining that he had really hurt his back and doesn’t think he will be well enough in time for the opening performance.  The team were disappointed.  Chuckles looked dismayed and explained that they may need to look at postponing the tour as nobody else can to the performances that Chuckles could do.  Chuckles made his way back to his room to be on his own.

An hour later there was a knock at the door, it was Connie.  Connie had come to see how Chuckles was and to bring him a nice warm hot chocolate to cheer him up.  Just then Chuckles had an idea, “Connie, how do you feel about me helping you learn some skills of mine, so that the show may still be able to go ahead”.

Connie looked at him in shock “you want me to learn your skills in 2 weeks”?

“It’s a challenge for us both” said Chuckles, “but I think we can do it, can’t we? I’m willing to give it a shot so that we don’t disappoint anyone”

Connie nervously smiled, her stomach felt tense, she was nervous and thrilled all at the same time, was this the opportunity that she has been waiting for??  “Ok, Ok, let’s give it a whirl”

After 2 weeks of perseverance, it was the night of the first performance.  Connie was dressed and had her face painted and was waiting to perform.  Connie’s stomach was doing backflips, she couldn’t believe she was really going to perform in front of over 200 people.  Connie felt nervous and said to Chuckles “Why did I think I could do this.  You have spent evening after evening for years to perform these skills, I really don’t think I can do it”.

Chuckles who was still struggling to stand up straight put his hand on her shoulder, and said “you can do this, you can be who you want to be.  Think positive”

With this Connie was called to perform, the crowd were cheering for her, and Connie felt a boost of confidence……

Connie started with her juggling, she performed it to perfection, making the balls into an arch like a colourful rainbow in the same way that Chuckles did.

The crowd chanted for more, so Connie moved onto the unicycle, as the music started, Connie began to ride with perfect balance in time to the music.  The crowd were on their feet cheering.

It was now time for the finale, Connie climbed the ladder and stood on the platform.  Before she began, she glanced at Chuckles who was standing tall, waving his arms in the air whilst cheering for Connie.  Chuckles winked and smiled at Connie!

The crowd began chanting her name as she stepped forward……………….