Our Instructors


Sara Sparrow

Sara Sparrow, founder of Sparrow Studios, has been teaching circus arts for ten years, and has more than three decades of experience as a performance artist. Her professional resume includes duo acrobatics, foot juggling, fabric, rope, hoop, trapeze, handbalancing, show direction and production, music, theater, visual art, and massage therapy. Although she currently lives in Bishop, California, she travels back to Washington regularly to teach and perform. Students have described her teaching as integrated, comprehensive, entertaining, supportive, engaged, and fun. www.sparrowcircus.com


emily van kley

Emily Van Kley has been studying aerial acrobatics in Olympia for six years. She performs regularly at the Brotherhood Takes Flight and is a member of the Airbound Underground and Murmurations performance troupes. She loves to help students master new material, and especially enjoys introducing new performers to the joy of creating their own characters and acts. Emily is also a poet––you can read more about her writing (including her first book!) at www.emilyvankley.com

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giselle garcia

Giselle is an aerialist and performing artist who has taught and performed in Olympia, WA and Chicago, IL. Her background in piano, dance, and as an electronic musician inform her circus art, and her movement is marked by an inventiveness and attention to dynamics and musicality. As a teacher, she is noted for her humor, energy, supportiveness, and attention to form. She also spends a considerable amount of time dancing and juggling, and adores improv and physical comedy. www.gisellegabrielle.com


bridget gunning

Bridget Gunning has been active in the Aerial Arts since 2001, performing on her first wooden trapeze in Tucson, Arizona. There, she did 5 seasons with ZUZI! Dance Company, as a performer, choreographer and manager. In Seattle, she taught, performed and provided administration for many organizations, including Emerald City Trapeze, SANCA and Apex Aerial Arts. She is thrilled to bring dance, hoop and sling programming to Olympia. Spanning ages 3-68, her teaching is informed by her background in dance, somatic movement, performance, yoga and athletic training.


joanna gibson

Joanna teaches children's circus classes for ages 6-8 and 9-12 at Sparrow Studios in downtown Olympia, Washington, to which she brings her love of circus, respect for the human body, and years of experience as an elementary school teacher! These hour-long classes work on body awareness, confidence, balance, hand-eye coordination, strength, and more through classic circus activities like juggling, hula hooping, tumbling, handstands, clowning, mime, and aerial acrobatics. With excellent student/teacher ratios, your child's safety and engagement are assured. They will leave this class feeling inspired, confident, and ready to take on the world with a new set of skills! registration for Joanna’s classes is at www.joannagibson.net.


marlo winter

Marlo Winter, a clown at heart, has been an active part of the Olympia aerial community for nearly seven years. She practices and teaches a wide-ranging level of aerial skills focusing on corde lisse, but also including static trapeze, sling, and silks, intentionally pushing her students and herself to gain technical proficiency while leaving space for creativity. She is the financial coordinator for Airbound Arts, co-producer and performer for the aerial group Airbound Underground, and current instructor for Teen Aerial at Airbound Arts. If you would like to know more about Marlo visit her website at MarloWinter.com.


almost precarious

Almost Precarious, made up of Ily and Casey, is a partner acro duo in the Olympia area. They perform, as well as teach classes for beginning partner acro (also known as acro yoga). They started practicing acro in 2013 and haven't been able to stop since!