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Circus historian George Chindahl has identified as many as 200 different circus acts, and new ones are being created every day. Some circus performers work alone, although most work as part of a troupe. Every performer, whether solo or a group, develops a unique act. The aim is to amaze, entertain, and thrill the audience with their performances, which often feature risky, even death-defying, stunts. A great deal of a performance is the suspense created until the performer is once again safe on the ground. When not performing, the performers and their apprentices and other helpers maintain their equipment, oversee the set-up of the equipment, maintain their costumes and other props used during performances, and train and rehearse their routines.
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