GH native documents circus performers in Palestine

Courtney Coulson's interest in telling people's stories led her to the Middle East region of Palestine.
Krystle Wagner
Aug 31, 2012


Coulson, a 1998 Grand Haven High School graduate, spent a month and a half traveling with two circuses throughout the West Bank last summer. For the past year, she's been part of a team editing the footage for a feature documentary film, “Welcome to the Circus!”

The film follows two circus schools — one from Palestine and one from France — joining together to form a mobile circus performing throughout Palestine.

“I wanted to step away from the politics and focus on the people,” she said.

Coulson, now of San Francisco, said she hopes the film is ready in time to enter into upcoming film festivals.

For the past year, Coulson and the team have edited hundreds of hours of footage she filmed alone. The editors are able to work on sections of the film and e-mail it to other collaborators.

Coulson said the editing process is the longest and one of the most challenging parts of filmmaking.

“It’s a labor of love, definitely,” she said.




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