Not Just The Circus: Ringling Bros Nicole Feld Talks Juggling Life With MotherhoodJoanna Mazewski
As I’m sure most working mothers out there know, it’s not easy trying to juggle your career while taking care of the kids at home, and it’s especially not easy when you work with a bunch of clowns (I see you raising your hand!). When it comes to clowns though and the juggling act called life, Nicole Feld knows a thing or two about what it takes to get the job done and not lose your balance in the meantime, too.
As one of the driving forces behind the Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey’s circus acts, the mother-of-one works in an unusual, fun and mostly male driven industry where anything can happen at anytime, literally. And while her job might have its high’s and low’s (it is the circus, after all!), she’s just like us when it comes to not being able to put her cell phone down throughout the day. But then again, what mom can’t, right?
As the Executive Vice President and Producer of Feld Entertainment, Inc., Nicole was born into the family business and at an early age she embarked on an ambitious road show throughout the company, immersing herself in every aspect of the business from creative and production to sales and marketing. For the next few years she focused on talent scouting, a unique skill that is intrinsic to the success of all Feld Shows, which also include Disney on Ice and Disney Live! shows.
These days Nicole is still very much a part of the show, with her daughter Piper perhaps as one of her biggest critics, despite only being a toddler. And what does she think of the “Greatest Show On Earth?” Nicole says with a chuckle, “I think she might be a little jaded just because she’s seen it so many times. But of course whenever the clowns come on with their act her eyes light up each and every time.”
But when it comes to coming home after the show, Nicole still has a hard time getting into “mom” mode, even after the final applaud is all said and done. “In the business that I’m in, it’s hard to just turn off my cell phone during the evenings or on the weekends when I’m supposed to be spending time with my family and with my daughter, especially because of the nature of the business that I’m in. When I’m giving Piper a bath or spending time with her, of course I try to leave the phone behind, just for that small moment that I can spend with her.”
There’s no doubt that many working moms can relate. But on the flip side, being part of the circus has its perks, too. “It’s difficult trying to find that balance, especially when I’m on the road so often or when the show depends on me being there, and that’s why I bring Piper along with me. I think at this point she’s probably seen more shows than any child her age, but she enjoys it and I enjoy having her with me whenever I can.”
And what about the best part of her job? Nicole explains that it’s when she gets to hear about people telling her about their first experience at the circus (and that’s a memory that I’m sure many of us hold near and dear). She says, “I love it when people tell me about their first time, or the first time they bring their children to one of our shows, because no matter what, it stays with them for a lifetime. I love when people come up to me and tell me how special the show was for them or how much their children or grandchildren enjoyed certain acts. It’s those kind of experiences that families cherish for a lifetime, and that’s what makes my job very fulfilling in the end.”
And we couldn’t agree anymore. Nicole is not only a working mom that raises her own family at home, but is a mom that makes a huge impact with families and the memories they make along the way, clowns included.
For more information on Feld Entertainment or tickets to Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus or Disney On Ice shows, please visit: