Jess Harkin was simply three years outdated when she first noticed a clown at a circus. From then on, she determined she wished to be one.
She wished to gown up and carry out tips to make folks giggle, however that each one stopped when she was in major college. Her classmates made enjoyable of her and she or he was bullied.
“People at school told me to cop on. They made me feel like it was stupid so I let go of it for a while.”
Jess struggled to make mates and spent most of her time at college on her personal.
“I was really shy and I didn’t have any friends. I spent lunchtime standing against the wall just watching everyone else play and have fun.”
The summer time earlier than she began secondary college, Jess started studying to carry out magic tips. She used them as a device to method folks and begin a dialog.
“The magic became a way for me to go up to people. I would show them a trick and then they would talk to me.”
However the County Donegal girl suffered extreme anxiety and struggled whereas at secondary college.
“I had actually dangerous anxiety points and I simply could not cope with it. I used to be scared on a regular basis and I’d fake to be sick so I did not have to go to college.
“I did not need the trainer to speak to me or make me speak in entrance of the category. I prevented eye contact with everybody and simply saved my head down.”
Jess had began getting counselling for the issue however did not need to keep at college. She left earlier than the beginning of her closing yr.
“My mother and father did not need me to go away however they may see I wasn’t comfortable in order that they agreed to let me.
“I was so relieved. I know school is important but no-one who is hiring a magician or a clown is looking for qualifications. They just want to see what you can do.”
The 22 yr outdated began studying her craft by watching movies on YouTube and studying books about magic. She additionally went to lessons on the In Your Area circus college in Londonderry.
“At the start, I just winged it but then I started going to circus school in Derry. It just clicked straight away and I loved it.”
Jess performs for audiences throughout Northern Eire however she says there should not many alternatives for circus performers.
“There is not a scene right here. I do know a few magicians and clowns however there is not very a lot work going for us.
“I am actually going for it now. I need to transfer to America and do that professionally.”
‘Kazoo the Clown’
Jess wears brightly colored garments, paints her face and wears a crimson nostril when she performs. However how did she choose her clown identify?
“I selected the identify Kazoo the Clown as a result of kazoos are annoying and no-one likes them.”
She makes use of her performances at events to encourage shy youngsters to construct their confidence by getting concerned in magic tips.
“Each time I do a celebration, I strive to discover the shy child to get them up for a trick. Generally they do not need to get up so I cross the wand down to them so they could be a a part of it.
“They remind me of what I used to be like. I tell their parents to take them to circus school.”
She says magic tips and performing as Kazoo has helped her manage her anxiety.
“I’m much more confident now. I can perform on stage in front of an audience. It’s changed who I am now.”