Sponsored by James Drew/Drew Expositions
Sponsored by Nik and Erendira Wallenda
Generations in the Circus: The Smith Legacy in Flight
New York, NY, February 10, 2024 — In the illustrious realm of the circus, where daring feats and thrilling performances define legacies, the Smith family etched its name in the annals of history. On this momentous occasion, we celebrated the culmination of a multi-decade career as David Smith, Sr. and Jr. stood proudly, having been honored as Lifetime Achievement co-inductees into the prestigious Circus Ring Of Fame. This momentous recognition marked the pinnacle of their journey, a crowning achievement in the world of circus arts.
The saga began with David Smith, Sr., an Olympic-bound gymnast turned apprentice of the famed Bobby Yerkes in the art of the flying trapeze. Alongside his first wife, Jean, they founded the RockSmith Flyers, achieving championship glory at the Circus World Championships in England in 1976.
By the early 80s, David, Sr. introduced the first cannon, signaling the start of a remarkable era. With each passing year, their family expanded, and each child became a human cannonball. Among them, David Sr. and Jr. emerged as the vanguards, propelling themselves to unparalleled heights in the daring discipline.
World Records and Global Impact
The Smith duo didn’t just break records; they shattered them. Holding world records for cannonball shots in both distance and height, their performances became a testament to courage, precision, and the boundless possibilities of human achievement. For over three decades, they captivated audiences worldwide, leaving an indelible mark on the global circus industry.
David, Sr.’s engineering brilliance was the backbone of their success. Every cannon meticulously crafted bore witness to the artistry and expertise that defined their performances.
The Pinnacle Recognition: Circus Ring Of Fame
On February 10, 2024, the Smith Family stood on the cusp of being honored as Lifetime Achievement co-inductees into the Circus Ring Of Fame, and the significance of their contributions to the circus arts took center stage. This recognition was not just an accolade; it was the highest tribute in the circus world, akin to the Oscars and Grammys in the entertainment industry.
The Circus Ring Of Fame Foundation, recognizing the highest of achievements in circus arts and culture, paid homage to the enduring legacy of the Smith family. Their induction was a testament to the decades of dedication, innovation, and heart-stopping performances that defined their careers.
As the spotlight converged on the Smiths on that historic night, it illuminated not just the cannon shots that soared to unprecedented heights but also the indomitable spirit that made them icons in the global circus panorama. On February 10, 2024, they stepped into the hallowed ring of fame, their names forever etched among the immortals of the circus world.