Our Instructors

Lisa Cote

Lisa was first drawn to the excitement of the flying trapeze in 1987, taking her first swing at Club Med in Copper Mountain, Colorado. Within a year, she grew from an eager student to instructor level. Lisa has a Bachelor of Science in Physical Education from the University of Houston and has been previously safety-certified by the USAG. After 5 years of teaching circus skills at Club Med, Lisa and her partner Stéphan had a 6-year career as professional aerialists, performing the flying trapeze, double trapeze, other aerial acts, and the Russian Swing all over the world. After starting a family, Lisa worked eight summers as Head of the Flying Trapeze at Country Roads Day Camp in New Jersey, overseeing 6 sessions per day, 5 days a week (thousands of happy kids).

Stéphan Cote

Stéphan joined Club Med in 1987 as a swimming instructor but it wasn’t long before he was drawn to the flying trapeze rig. He quickly became a catcher and was asked to move on as a Circus Instructor. Within a year he was leading his team in various resorts around the world and was eventually tasked with opening the very first circus program in Europe for Club Med. Running away and joining the circus seemed like the most obvious next step for Stéphan and his partner Lisa. They went on to perform their acts all over the world including a long stint here in Las Vegas where they have elected to stay in their retirement from performing. After a few years sabbatical, he is back at it and eager to share his knowledge and passion for circus arts.

Victoria Cote

Victoria was born and raised in Las Vegas. She made her first catch on the Flying Trapeze when she was only 3 years old. When Victoria is not studying at the University of Portland she teaches Flying Trapeze and is currently a casting intern with Cirque du Soleil.

Specialties: Dance, Flying Trapeze, Aerial Hoop

Chris Ries

Chris attended Illinois State University, majoring in Secondary Physics Education; where he also participated in the Gamma Phi Circus – one of only two collegiate circus programs in the United States. While at Gamma Phi, Chris learned and performed acts such as Flying Trapeze, Russian Swing, Teeterboard, Handbalancing, Trampoline, Russian bar, Juggling, and many others. After attending ISU as a student, Chris stayed on for a year as the assistant coach of the Gamma Phi Circus. Following that year, Chris performed as a flying trapeze artist for POP Circus, traveling throughout Japan. After the 9.0 earthquake, that show went on hiatus and Chris transitioned back to a teaching role at TSNY Chicago. His performance skills as an incredibly talented flying trapeze artist were still in demand and he was soon contacted by Cirque du Soleil to train as a backup flyer while performing at Circus Vargas. After two and a half years there, Cirque hired Chris as an acrobat for the show KA, where he currently performs right here in Las Vegas!

Charlie Strachan

Charlie was born in Cape Town South Africa where he started with a youth circus, Circus Osler. At Circus Osler, Charlie developed many skills such as flying trapeze, unicycle, tightrope, clowning, fire eating, rolo-bola, plate spinning, balloon twisting, face painting, and juggling… to name a few. After being drafted into the South African army and traveling all over Africa with the entertainment unit, he accepted an offer to work in Europe for 2 years as a trapeze catcher in an act known as the “Starlords”. Following his time in the army, Charlie worked as a chorus member and circus instructor to his fellow cast members in the production “Barnum” in Johannesburg. During his clowning career, Charlie has worked as a clowning teacher at Ringling Brothers Clown College, been a clown for Ringling at Disneyland, and an entertainer and stilt walker at the Circus Circus Casino in Las Vegas and across many state fairs, including Indiana, Florida, Ohio, Texas, and more. Currently, Charlie still works as an entertainer in Vegas through his business, Charlie The Clown, and is proud to be part of the Trapeze Las Vegas team!

Specialties: Juggling, Flying Trapeze, Low Wire, Stilts, Unicycle, Balloon Sculpting

Lygia Way

Lygia hails from the Big Island of Hawaii and recently moved to Las Vegas to pursue her dreams as a circus artist. Highlights of her career include features on American Horror Story and Bollywood productions in India. She has been trained on the Aerial cradle, Silks, Lyra, static and flying trapeze which are her specialties of choice. Follow Lygia on Instagram @lygiaway

Click here to book a private lesson with Lygia. 

Specialties: Aerial Silks, Lyra,  Static Trapeze

Michael Radiff

Michael got his start in 2005 performing with Royal Caribbean Cruise Line as a dancer, aerialist, and acrobat.  From there his career led him to Las Vegas where he performed in Les Folies Bergere, Donn Arden’s Jubilee, and Steve Wynn’s Show Stoppers. Along with his performance career, he has been working as an aerial and tumbling coach since 2013.

Click here to book a private lesson with Michael. 

Specialties: Aerial Silks, Aerial Hoop, Tumbling & Acrobatic, Dance

James Baylis

James has been a performer since his first solo as a singer in the 3rd grade. He grew up in the suburbs of NYC in the small town of Harrison. He played saxophone, piano, later adding several more to his skill set.  James discovered his passion for aerial on his 31st birthday, after attending a class at Trapeze School New York. After that class, he was offered the opportunity to return and train as a catcher.  In 2016, he set out across the country for Las Vegas and quickly joined the staff at Trapeze Las Vegas, in which he specializes in flying trapeze as well as duo static trapeze. James is also a trained massage therapist. Visit www.jamesbaylislmt.com 

Specialty: Flying Trapeze

Stephanie Huntsman

Stephanie discovered flying trapeze at the age of 8, although did not find herself atop the platform again until 2014. She was instantaneously enamored with the art and therapeutic nature of flight; and after accepting a position within Cirque du Soleil’s Performance Medicine Department, she found herself in Las Vegas transitioning from student to instructor. When she isn’t caring for the artists or sharing the magic of flying trapeze, she can be found at both local and international Obstacle Course Races, competing for Team RockTape, NOWFoods and For Those Who Would, where her experience with the aerial arts gave her the confidence to explore this up-and-coming sport. You can follow her adventures on Instagram @Illtapethat

Specialty: Flying Trapeze

Yana Shkarupa

Yana was born in Kiev, Ukraine where she began gymnastics at 4 years old. After discovering gymnastics, she went on to become a professional gymnast for 14 years. At the age of 18, right before the Olympic games, she received a contract to be a circus performer in Germany. Since 2003 Yana has enjoyed performing her acrobatic skills on stages such as Cirque Du Soleil, Knott’s Berry Farm, and Universal Studios Japan. Yana loves being and performer and strives to never stop learning new things and improving herself. She currently one of the coaches for the Aerial Angels performance troupe along with teaching pole, fitness, and flexibility at Trapeze Las Vegas. Follow Yana on Instagram @Zirka4ka

Click here to book a private lesson with Yana.

Specialties: Acrobatics, Pole Acrobatics, Tumbling, Handstands

Jenny Atomik

Jenny has lived in New York, California, and Washington.

Specialties: Rope, Silks, Hammock, Static Trapeze

Jennifer Franklin

Jennifer is from California. She has previously performed with Alice Las Vegas.

Specialties: Lyra, Acrobatic Pole

Heather Mason

Heather is from Cleveland, Ohio. She has previously performed with the Cincinnati Circus.

Specialties include: Flying Trapeze, Tumbling, Stilts

Quinn Busch

Quinn is from Portland, Oregon. She has performed at the Umbrella Festival, VivaFest, Directors Park, A-WOL Dance Collective, Sir Cupcakes Queer Circus, and Joy Now Arts Collective.

Specialties: Silks, Stilts, Flying Trapeze, Lyra, Hammock, Specialty Apparatuses

Emanuel Laurino

Ema is from Buenos Aires, Argentina, and is fluent in Spanish. He has performed at Circus Circus and Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas and has performed with Cirque Dreams and Cirque du Soleil.

Specialties: Risley, Dance Trapeze

Ben Lerman

Ben is from Arizona. He has performed on America’s Got Talent, at Circus Circus Las Vegas, and the Linq Las Vegas. He has also performed with various other international tours.

Specialties: Straps, Hand Balancing

Nicole Taylor Weiss

Nicole was born in Sarasota, Florida, but has traveled her entire life. She has performed with Ringling Brothers, Circus Vargas, Cirque Musica, and on Fremont Street Experience as a Dancing DJ.

Specialties: Hula Hoops, Aerial Arts, Acro Contortion, Static Trapeze

Lola Cavallini

Lola was born in Peru and is fluent in Spanish. She has performed with Carson & Barnes, Ramos Brothers Circus, and Lewis & Clark.

Specialties: Foot Juggling, Rolling Globe

July Coronel

July is from Peru and is fluent in Spanish. She has performed with Carson & Barnes, Ramos Brothers Circus, Jody Jordan, Hugo Gymnastics, and Lewis & Clark.

Specialties: Aerial Arts, Hula Hoops, Tumbling