Steve Russell– In Capable Hands

Steve RussellA good article recently appeared in the Dunn County News about Clown College Graduate Steve Russell, and how he got a job with the NY City Opera through clown-networking. I’m a member of that network, and saw the whole thing happen!

Steve and his wife Kobi Shaw form a juggling duo called In Capable Hands. Both are graduates of Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey Clown College, and Steve has trained over 100 Ringling Bros. clowns in juggling and clowning. Their talents have taken them all over the country, as well as all over the world. Between the two of them, Steve and Kobi have appeared at Disney World, Disneyland, London’s Covent Garden, and renaissance festivals from Florida to Texas. Their skills have been seen on national television for Good Morning America, Nickelodeon T.V., and the Tonight Show.

They have juggled on more than 15 cruise ships, traveling throughout Europe, Hawaii, Alaska, South America and the Caribbean. Regionally, they entertain audiences at numerous fairs and festivals, including the Minnesota, Iowa, Montana, Ohio, and Northern Wisconsin State Fairs. In addition, they do a corporate presentation entitled The Art of Ooomph.

Russell and Shaw are married and have been a juggling duo since 1996. Their two sons, Tate and Quinn, were born in January, 2001 and November, 2002, respectively. They spend their time trying to avoid being juggled..

You can find out more about In Capable Hands by visiting their website (listed below)

I’ve also included a portion of that article, but to read the rest, read the article on the original website

Specialty act – Talent with fire lands Russell with Big Apple opera gig

By LeAnn R. Ralph, Reporter

When you have a specialized skill and no one else applies, you’re bound to get the job.

And that’s exactly how Colfax resident Steve Russell, of the comedy juggling duo In Capable Hands, ended up as the understudy to the fire-breathing juggling clown in the production of “Pagliacci” at the New York City Opera.

“Pagliacci” is scheduled to be performed at Lincoln Center from Sept. 28 to Oct. 27. Russell began rehearsals Sept 13, after learning only five days earlier that he had gotten the job.

“I’m a graduate of Ringling Brothers Clown College, and I’m on an e-mail list of about 400 other people who graduated from clown school and clown college,” Russell said.

People on the e-mail list exchange information about jobs that are available. Russell’s wife and show business partner (and Dunn County News correspondent), Kobi Shaw, had seen the listing asking for a juggler/fire eater to be an understudy for Pagliacci the day before Russell called about the job.

“Kobi said, ‘this is something you should do,’ ” Russell recalled.

By the time he was able to make a telephone call on Friday afternoon, he was certain that the New York City Opera would have already found someone else.

“I gave them a call mid-afternoon on Friday. Within five minutes, he was talking as if I already had the job,” Russell said. “It turns out that it’s hard to find a fire-breathing juggler who could make the dates of the show. I wish all my jobs were this easy and this glamorous.”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.