Juggling - From Antiquity to the Middle Ages
the forgotten history of throwing and catching
by Thom Wall
Pub Date 15 Mar 2019
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Around the world, people have been throwing and catching objects for millennia, as a form of play, ritual, and entertainment.
Cirque du Soleil alum and internationally renowned juggler Thom Wall takes readers on an exciting journey through the history of juggling across time and cultures. Academic in its approach without sacrificing readability, Juggling – From Antiquity to the Middle Ages: the forgotten history of throwing and catching is a detailed tour through the development and growth of juggling throughout the world, in cosmopolitan and remote locales and everything in-between. From its earliest traces in Ancient Egypt to fairgrounds in medieval Russia, the history of juggling is explored in this conversational yet thoroughly researched and annotated survey unlike anything written before. Crossing genres of anthropology, history, and the niche field of “circademia,” Wall has created a unique treatise, resulting in a gripping read for circus professionals and laypersons alike.
Thom Wall has written a superb summary of almost everything known about ancient and medieval juggling. When I worked in this area a few decades ago, early juggling history was mostly poorly documented hearsay. Our knowledge has exploded since then, and Wall has done a masterful job of laying it all out in a readily accessible form. Anyone interested in either juggling or history will want to read this book.
Prof. Arthur Lewbel
Barbara A & Patrick E. Roche Endowed Chair, Department of Economics, Boston College
Juggling: From Antiquity to the Middle Ages is an incredible resource to anyone interested in the history of juggling. Thom Wall has filled in many gaps to the documented history of the art. This is the juggling history book that I’ve been waiting for.
Curator, Museum of Juggling History
Thom Wall sets the standard for future work by circademics… I predict that [this] book will become the textbook on juggling history.
Juggling Coach and Theater History Instructor, Circadium: School of Contemporary Circus
It’s uncommon to read a work by an individual who is both a historical expert on a subject and a current leading practitioner of the same craft. Wall taps into both of these roles with a work that provides a thoroughly researched historical look at the subject of juggling… This book is a wonderful addition to the library of anyone interested in the history of this genre of circus arts as well as those looking to become jugglers themselves.
Chairman, International Jugglers’ Association
…a fascinating and thorough look in to the history of juggling. With the sure and steady hand befitting a master juggler, Thom takes a scholarly and painstakingly well researched approach to uncover the origins of juggling around the world. From the images of jugglers found in the tomb of Beni Hasan in Egypt to the founding of the International Juggler’s Association no stone is left unturned or stone ball left untossed in this surprisingly fast moving and entertaining tome. Thom is like an ambidextrous Indiana Jones, a brave adventurer who searches into the very heart of juggling to discover its most ancient secrets.
Winner, International Jugglers’ Association "Award of Excellence"
The book reads like a serenade to the art of juggling… love, enthusiasm, and devotion on every page.
Actor, Writer, and Cirque du Soleil Clown
MONDO Juggling Festival – meet and greet – Feb, 2019 (Minneapolis, MN)
East-Coast Library Tour – History show and meet & greet - (Spring & Summer 2019, dates pending)
Author is available for his award-winning history show “On the Topic of Juggling” (presented as a featured performance for a 16-show run at the 2018 Smithsonian Folklife Festival) along with book signings or lectures.
For more information, contact Thom directly: firstname.lastname@example.org
Online: Interviews, reviews, and other online promotions with CircusTalk, the American Youth Circus Organization, American Circus Educators, White Tops, Spectacle Magazine, Hideaway Circus, and the International Jugglers’ Association.
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