Circus Ring of Fame Wheel Plaque

Dolly Jacobs-Reis

Inducted into the Ring of Fame: 1997

Circus Profession: Aerialist/Co-Founder of Circus Arts Conservatory and Circus Sarasota

Born: 1957

Dolly Jacobs Circus Ring Of Fame Foundation inductee plaque

DollyJacobs Founder and Vice President, The Circus Arts Conservatory Known as the
“Queen of the Air,” Dolly Jacobs is a world-renowned circus
aerialist as well as a dedicated teacher, sharing the tradition of circus
arts with new generations through performing and training. Jacobs mother was
one of the top 10 New York models of her time who was featured on several
magazine covers and appeared in a variety of commercials and movies. Her
father was Lou Jacobs, one of the most famous clowns of the century, who
performed with Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus for over 60

Earning the distinction of being the only living American to have his
image on a U.S. postage stamp, he was one of the world’s most beloved
and recognized clowns becoming a living legend in the circus world. Jacobs
grew up in Sarasota, Fla., and ocassionally traveled with her father in the
circus during her school breaks.

She was a part of Sailor Circus in Sarasota,
a youth program that is uniquely reflective of the community’s circus
heritage. Jacobs joined the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus
in 1971 as a member of the corps de ballet, making her solo debut on the
Roman rings in a lauded performance in 1976.

She has been featured in
multiple magazines, documentaries and television shows world-wide. She was
twice invited to perform in the prestigious International Circus Festival of
Monte Carlo founded by Prince Ranier and Princess Grace and each time was
recognized as “La Dame du Cirque.”

In 1988 she received the coveted
Silver Clown Award, presented to her by Prince Albert of Monaco. In 1997,
Jacobs and her husband, fellow circus artist Pedro Reis, founded Circus
Sarasota (today known as The Circus Arts Conservatory), a nonprofit
organization that presents world-class professional performances while also
providing youth training, educational and outreach programs. The dynamic duo
oversees the Sailor Circus Academy, the youth circus arts program Jacobs participated
in as a child, and also conducts programming in local schools that integrates
the circus arts into subjects including science, language arts, and theater

The CAC’s Circus Arts in Healthcare program brings joy and circus
arts to those in assisted living communities and adult day care centers. In
1998, Jacobs was inducted into the prestigious Circus Ring of Fame and, in
1999, received the “Circus Celebrity” acclamation from the John and
Mable Ringling Museum of Art, awarded to members of the community who have
brought extraordinary dedication and excellence to the circus arts. In 2012
she received the Florida Folk Heritage award from the Florida Department of
State. In 2013 she was inducted into The Gallery of Acrobatic Legends for her
outstanding acrobatic feats. In 2015, she became the first ever circus artist
to ever receive the National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage
Fellowship Award.