Old Staff Page
Rhiannon (RHEE!) Franciscus
Rhiannon has been flying for over 5 years. She was a natural at picking up the physics and fundamentals of the sport, and made a very rapid progression from student to full-fledged instructor. Although she is short, she is mighty, and students of all ages pay attention to her authoritative commands and helpful suggestions. She is very positive and motivating and has more energy than the Energizer Bunny.
Susan became an enthusiastic Trapeze High Intern in her second class. She made a smooth transition to fully trained staff member in her first year. Susan has her Aerial Silks Teacher Certificate and is teaching this aerial art in San Diego. Susan is a very diligent and hard worker, always giving her all to improve her skills. She continues to surprise us with her performances in the aerial arts.
Currently, Susan is spending six months performing and teaching for Club Med in Malaysia.
Chris first flew on the trapeze days after the death of his friend, Jacob Ayers. Chris says Jake taught him more than he could imagine. Chris learned to fly, catch and pull lines and stepped it up to become a staff member to keep Trapeze High running after the loss of Jake. Chris is the staff member we think most might run away and join the circus as his skills just keep getting better and better. He loves flying because it is the one place where he can go to be free.
Tori Manning (Ms. Tori)
Tori grew up doing gymnastics and always dreamed of doing flying trapeze. She moved to Australia in 2005 where she began learning static trapeze and tissue, but in the back of her mind always wanted to fly! Her wish came true when she moved back to San Diego in April 2007 and found Trapeze High. She is now addicted to trapeze, and you may see her flying, catching, pulling safety lines and working the board. Tori successfully introduced and hooked her husband, Noah on flying trapeze. Tori has the prettiest catch locks of all of our catchers at Trapeze High.
David (The Puppetmaster) Ayers
Dave found flying trapeze in 1994 in Sonoma, Ca in Sam Keen’s much larger and more beautiful backyard. He has been teaching flying trapeze since 1999. He enjoys helping anyone who aspires to learn flying trapeze and has a really good eye for seeing what happened during each swing. He trains both brand new students as well as experienced fliers, assisting them in improving their skills. He is responsible for training all of the staff here at Trapeze High. Dave is the best line-puller in the world (seriously), and is one of the co-owners of Trapeze High. If Dave tells you that you did good, you really, truly did good!
Lindsay (The Queen) Van Voorhis
Lindsay first flew on the trapeze at Club Med for her 40th birthday way back in 1995. She dreamed about flying for the next five years until a circus school opened near her home in Northern California. When it closed 3 months later, she followed her mentor, the legendary and very patient, Tony Steele to Sonoma. There she joined/crashed the Sonoma Trapeze Troupe mostly by showing up, being polite, and cleaning the bathroom a lot. Ultimately she fell in love with her line puller (Dave) who shared her love of flying trapeze. Together they dreamed of sharing their passion for flying trapeze with others. She is the co-founder and Queen of Trapeze High. Flying on the trapeze changed her life for the better in every way.