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Michael Trautman’s Death of a Clown


This show explores how we find humor and humanity in the face of catastrophe.

COVID has forced many new realities on everyone, not least a clown who can no longer perform routines that are suddenly in the "too dangerous for the public" arena. This show explores how we find humor and humanity in the face of catastrophe.

“At the outset of COVID, I immediately realized that my previous show, ‘King Pong,’ was no longer a viable public performance,” explains performer Michael Trautman. “The idea of spitting ping pong balls all over a theater, and into and at an audience—not to mention having 1,000 ping pong balls scattered about the stage—seems to be as dangerous as any kind of show one could experience. I believe that my response to my own personal dilemma has relevance for everyone in how we move forward in this, ‘new normal.’”

The creation of "Death of a Clown" was funded in part by a grant from the Maine Arts Commission, an independent state agency supported by the National Endowment for the Arts.


Variously identified as a visual comic, performance artist, new vaudevillian, mime (gasp), physical comedian, storyteller, magician, and fool, he claims only to be a clown...and not a very traditional clown at that.

He has appeared in such prestigious venues as theNew York International Festival of Clown Theater, Festival D’Ete in Quebec, the General Jackson Showboat at Opryland USA, the Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal, and The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

From 2016-2018, Michael was the Artistic Director and Creative Director at the Maine Circus Academy (aka Circus Maine) where he taught movement, mask, mime, character and performance in the Professional Training Program. He also directed the Youth Performance Troupe, and created and directed the yearly Solstice Circus productions.

In his free time, Michael can be found at his home in Portland, Maine soaking up inspiration from his son Gabe and his wife, the lovely and talented set designer, Judy Gailen.

Purchase any ticket and gain admission to the Clown Skills Workshop with Michael Trautman (ages 13+) for $15 instead of $25!

Friday, October 8, 2021, at 7:00 PM Doors open at 6:30 PM; 60-minutes with an intermission

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