The Gold Coast has forever been a magnet for high-flying professionals and other business superstars. But there’s one group of Gold Coasters putting the ‘wow’ into work wow factor and they are literally flying high while they do it.


As kids we are often asked what we want to be when we grow up. Among the most common answers you’ll hear are doctors, lawyers, fire fighters or even astronauts. But there’s one group of daring locals who chose to dream bigger than that. They wanted to join the circus. So they did.


The Aerial Angels Academy is a circus arts and dance school based on the Gold Coast specialising in all facets of aerial artistry training for everyone from toddlers through to adults. While those circus skills the academy’s trainers teach are amazing, it’s the host of local talent, all under the one roof, that will have you feeling proud if you’re a fellow Gold Coaster.


RhettTrainers at Aerial Angels, including Rhett Morrow, Samara Stewart, Leah Jacobs and Melaine Peyton-Smith, have worked at world-class venues such as Universal Studios, Ocean Park in Hong Kong, Sunway Lagoon in Kuala Lumpur and in popular shows including So You Think You Can Dance, Moulin Rouge and for Disney. You may even know some of them from their performances at more local venues such as Jupiter’s Casino, Draculas, Australian Outback Spectacular, Movie World and more.


Rhett’s circus talent and success, which emerged when he was just five years old, has seen him appearing as a regular guest on the Network Ten kids’ show Toasted TV and in interviews with ABC Stateline and Channel 9’s Today show. If you asked Rhett what his “job” entailed, he’d tell you he spends his day tumbling, juggling and performing acrobatics. Not bad work if you can get it. Rhett was also the 2015 Australian Street Entertainer Champion!


Samara has a resume stretching across the globe. Starting out as a gymnast at age four and joining the Aerial Angels Academy by the age of 15, Samara has performed in corporate events in China, Indonesia, Hong Kong and throughout Australia. She recently appeared in the Singapore River Festival in a performance staged over the Singapore River, more than 15 metres in the air. Definitely not a job for the faint hearted.


Melanie and LeahAerial Angels Academy’s Leah, who stared dancing and acrobatics at age three and received national championship status in Sports Acrobatics by the age of 12, has also travelled the world working as a dancer and acrobat on Mediterranean and Caribbean cruise ships. On her return to Australia, Leah has work as a roving performer alongside some of Australia’s top circus acts. Leah was a featured performer in the Jupiter’s Casino production, ‘Inneuvre’.


Melaine is another talented trainer at the Academy. She has performed in countries all around the world and even worked as a stunt double in Hollywood films such as The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions (for Carrie Ann Moss), Superman Returns (for Kate Bosworth) and The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. Now that is a pretty cool day job. Melanie has also performed in the corporate events market for more than 10 years and performed locally in Jupiter’s Casino’s ‘Inneurve’ and ‘Hidden Palace’.


For more about Aerial Angels Academy’s multitude of classes, for pre-preps to adults, phone 07 5522 0702 or visit www.aerialangelsacademy.com.au.


Words // Amanda Jacobson




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