Madeline Falley is a Philadelphia based Tightwire Artist. She has spent the majority of her life finding structures to balance on, starting with the fences on her family farm. “The cows make for great company,” she says.
However, the cows are not her only audience, Madeline has been dazzling crowds around North America since 2015, on wires that range from 6 feet to 20 feet tall. And no matter what kind of event it is, Madeline says the energy from performing comes through the connection to the audience.
“I’ve done events for 50 people in venues so small that we can barely fit the aerial rig in the space,” she says. “In that situation, the audience is just feet away. It’s so human. You can catch an individual’s eye. They’re close enough to see you sweat. It makes a performance feel more intimate. Those tiny little individual exchanges make every performance different.”
A big production for thousands of people, delivers a different dynamic, she says. “A big event at a big venue gives you opportunities for oversized staging and rigging that can deliver an oversized wow factor. It’s a unique experience to sit on a trapeze and dangle your feet 10 feet over the head of the tallest person in the room. And at big events, I’ve gotten to work with larger groups of performers. It’s great to combine all that energy. And still the connection with the audience is the exciting part. You can feel that they’re rooting for you.”
Beyond tightwire Madeline performs on aerial silks, and trapeze, and she does juggling, clowning and theatre. She graduated in June 2021 from Circadium School of Contemporary Circus in Philadelphia. Her thesis project from the three-year program explores themes related to self-understanding and acceptance and social norms and showcases her unique hybrid tightwire style, with movement not just above the wire, but below and around the wire and platforms. It is not uncommon to see glimpses of what might once have been trapeze, dance, or even Chinese pole in her wire work.
“It’s exciting to connect the dots from one aparatus to my core discipline. I love the idea of moving wire walking in unexpected directions—literally and figuratively. It’s exciting to break new ground.”
Learn more about Madeline, check out her work, or get in touch today.