Her mother, Sophie, was one of the youngest persons to join the circus. She loved animals and this helped her develop a special relationship with them. She could get them to do pretty much anything – horses pranced on two feet, while elephants sat down with their front feet in the air.
Her delicate nature and her elegant appearance made Hans the ringmaster fall in love with her almost instantly. It was only natural therefore that their daughter, Yana, would be born and raised in the travelling circus.
Yana could not imagine a different life. She met people from all over the world, so talented and so cheerful. As different as they were, they were united in one thing: their ability to entertain.
The circus troupe was world-renowned. And for this almost every performance was sold out. People came from all over the world to watch a three hour spectacle filled with jugglers, clowns, flame-throwers, acrobats, goat-pig-and-dog shows, elephant parades, horse performances, and the lions.
The latter was one of the highlights. Even the central ring had to be turned into a giant cage to protect the audience from the menacing roars and claws of the magnificent white lion and the six lionesses. Yet, this was what everyone looked forward to. That and the breathtaking salto mortale.
It was the moment when the audience was mesmerised and transfixed on that one performer occupying the central ring.
And it was that very moment that made Yana grateful for being part of the circus. Because for her it truly was the greatest show on earth.
Photos are mine taken at the Circus Krone in Munich on 01 January 2014.