Yulia Negrey returns to Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® with a one-of-a-kind, high energy acrobatic tumbling performance for Built To Amaze!SM. She assembled an elite 10 person team featuring the best gymnasts and acrobats from Russia, Kazakhstan and the Ukraine including former Olympic athletes. She developed an 80-foot tumbling track especially for Ringling Bros.® that would allow the performers to execute high-surge somersaults, cartwheels, power flips and super-velocity jumps. The mixed Russian and Ukrainian troupe of ten are a dazzling display of mixed acrobatics and dance translating into a theatrical combination of athleticism and grace.
At the age of eight, Yulia began performing with the Children's Circus in Moscow and, at the age of 16, she began attending the prestigious Moscow College of Circus and Arts. After finishing college, she honed her skills as an acrobat and entertainer for eight years while performing with the Drobishevsky Troupe. During that time, she also began developing ideas for an act, one in which the troupe members would perform extraordinary acrobatic feats while intertwining the elegance of dance. When the Drobishevsky Troupe disbanded, Yulia knew it was time to build her own concept.
She began with numerous phone calls across Russia, Ukraine and Europe to recruit strong tumblers with an eye for finesse. Yulia met resistance within the male dominated circus world. She found that her idea of taking acrobatics and turning it into a choreographed, synchronized routine using elements of dance wasn't popular with her male counterparts. Eventually, with perseverance and working hard to prove herself, she formed the troupe she had envisioned for so many years.
The Negrey Troupe was formed by performers from Russia and Ukraine. After months of practicing their innovative routine, they toured the circuits across Europe and Russia. Yulia constantly changed the costumes and the acts, always wanting to keep it fresh - something new and entertaining.
Being unique was tough. Keeping work separated from home was the hardest part. Yulia and her husband had only been partners for three years and the stress of always being together at work and at home was difficult. Having the creative rights was great but it's never easy being a leader.
Yulia's hard work and originality was finally realized in 2005 when the Negrey Troupe was invited to perform on a popular French television program, Le Plus Grand Cabaret Du Monde, and in 2007 when the troupe was invited to perform on an annual German television show, Stars in der Manege, similar to a CBS network television show in the United States, Circus of the Stars. Then, when the Negrey Troupe was invited to tour with Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Presents BOOM A RING, the troupe thought they had reached their highest level of achievement.
The Negrey Troupe is excited to be a part of The Greatest Show On Earth! We really enjoy performing at Ringling Bros., especially during the pre-show because it gives us the opportunity to interact with the public and we enjoy that a lot," says Yulia.