What They Were Thinking

What They Were Thinking: In the Big Apple Circus

Anna Volodko, 21, performing in the Big Apple Circus at City Hall Plaza, April 8, 2012.

Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff

Anna Volodko, 21, performing in the Big Apple Circus at City Hall Plaza, April 8, 2012.

Every Sunday, Boston Globe photographer Stan Grossfeld asks the subject of one of his photos to explain what's happening in the shot.

Who's up today: Anna Volodko, 21, performed in the Big Apple Circus at City Hall Plaza, April 8, 2012.

Volodko: “I’ve done this more than 1,000 times. I was thinking I wanted to show myself nicely, to make this move beautiful so that people could enjoy my performance. I go up there and do these drops with the rope and I hope that people shout, that they love it. When I started as an aerialist, it was scary. Now it’s fine. There is no net, no security. My life is in my hands. I fell once when I was starting but there was a mat there. It’s really dangerous. If I think about other things, it would be too dangerous. There’s a lot of rope burns. It’s not comfortable to have the long hair when I’m performing because it gets in my eyes. But it is my natural color - I’m a real blonde and I use it like a prop to be really special. The audience is always different because of their mood. I like Boston audiences; there’s more applause than in Russia. They’re more critical. When I finish and go backstage, I’m happy and proud if I made the audience happy. It’s a great feeling. If they don’t clap and I made a mistake, I’m angry.’’

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