This is not your ordinary circus. For starters, it’s made up of skiers, not bearded women and unicyclists. Meet the crew. Will Wesson is a pro skier who’s shot with Level 1 Production and Meathead Films, and last year, was nominated for Best Jib at the Powder Magazine Video Awards. Andy Parry is Wesson’s cohort and Orage, Line, and Full Tilt teammate. Since fall 2008, Wesson and Parry have been creating the Line Traveling Circus webisodes, a series of free videos documenting the adventures of ski bums as they slide rails, tackle summer jobs washing dishes, and eat their share of cheap, unappetizing food. Their 10-minute clips on linetravelingcircus.com have earned them blogosphere fame and possibly a spot in the Fuel TV lineup. Line team manager, Josh Malczyk, tells us about the Traveling Circus theme song, traveling with Wesson and Parry, and his own claim to fame featured in episode eight.
Let me get this straight: These are webisodes about ski bums washing dishes?
The Traveling Circus has created a tool for us to show the real side of skiing and promote our underground riders, who are out there every day, cameras or not. For example, in the first episode of season 2 the guys did a profile of Erik Olson, a Line skier who’s been with us for years. Erik packed up, drove out to Mt. Hood and lived in his car for a few months, skiing every day and working as a dishwasher. His story and lifestyle is so unique. It’s important to show this side of skiing and not just the pristine staged shots that make up the majority of snow sports marketing.
In your eyes, what makes Wesson and Parry true ski bums?
Placing comfort and income behind being able to be in the mountains and on snow. They sacrifice a lot for skiing.
What’s with the Traveling Circus name?
Last year, we decided to put a bit more effort into branding the project. We had a friend create a theme song and brought consistent marketing and content to the season and finally gave it a name. The Line Traveling Circus was born. With the originality of the content, hype building for the next episode, and the level of riding, the show was an instant hit.
And Line Traveling Circus will be on Fuel TV?
The show was just piloted and pitched to Fuel TV by an independent film production company called Adrenaline Garage. The show has not been picked yet. We’re hoping Fuel decides to show skiing on their action sports channel. Freestyle skiing has been in the X Games for years and is also in the Winter Dew Tour thus legitimizing its popularity. These days skiers and snowboarders in the park do the same tricks, wear the same clothes and even (gasp) talk and film together like equals. Even if Fuel decides to pick up the show it will still be available for free online.
What is the most unique aspect of their episodes?
They’re funny without trying to be funny. Viewers can relate to returning cans to get extra money or going to some ski area in New York chock full of gapers. The situations, people, and places they come across give way to real life humor.
Have you ever traveled with them?
Yes, I’ve been hanging with them at a few points during the season. Line’s marketing and my job revolve a lot around incorporating our riders on the hill. They were living in the mountains everywhere last year so I managed to bump into them in a ton of locations.
Season one, episode eight documents a two-week excursion I had with them to the Orage Masters Competition in Whistler and traveling down to Mt. Hood, Oregon. The episode shows where I work, and I hate to gloat, but has a certain Line marketing office guy landing his first front flip.