Our Mission

Through the art of the theatrical clown and the one-ring circus, My Nose Turns Red cultivates a supportive environment that inspires youth to challenge  themselves, develop essential life skills and engage audiences.

My Nose Turns Red (MNTR) is the only non-proft organization in the Greater Cincinnati area dedicated to youth circus. Every year MNTR provides year- round training and performance opportunities for over 400 youth in the art of the one-ring circus and the theatrical clown. We believe that youth circus is a magical blend of theatre, movement, physical ftness, imagination and childlike wonder. Our instructors blend the ability to play with the precision of circus arts to create programs where youth learn teamwork and trust in a non-competitive environment. From beginners’ classes to advanced performance programs, MNTR provides a safe arena for young people to take risks and challenge


My Nose Turns Red was founded in 1984 when co-founders Jean St. John and Steve Roenker began touring as theatrical clowns Juice and Shootang, bringing their art form to thousands of children through school performances, workshops, residencies, and community performances. In 1997, MNTR created a circus program designed to give youth the opportunity to experience the joys and challenges of circus training and performing.

“My Nose Turns Red is a wonderful addition to our daughter’s life. She has developed physical strength, balance and poise, in addition to self-confidence, all while having fun. Never one for team sports, becoming a member of the MNTR youth circus allows her to work both individually and in groups, without the focus on “winning” and “competition.“
Nancy C. Elder, MD, MSPH
Associate Professor and Director of Research Department of Family and Community Medicine