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Kryssy Kocktail was a loner, who dreamed of running away from a troubled family to join the circus. At six years old, she was abandoned by her mother, who suffered from mental illness and drug and alcohol problems. The girl was left to bounce from home to home, never having real roots of her own.

A grown woman now, Kryssy makes her living as a clown in the colorful, kinetic Coney Island Circus Sideshow. She eats fire, lies on a bed of nails, and stands still as the knife-thrower's target.

Amid the lights and the wild circus energy, Kryssy finds what she's never had. "I can't believe I ever made it this far," she says, "and I'm hoping better things come."

Family Kocktail is a product of the MediaStorm Storytelling Workshop, where participants work alongside MediaStorm staff to create an intimate, character-driven documentary in just one week. Learn more about upcoming MediaStorm workshops and online training at mediastorm.com/train.

Published: October 8, 2009


Video & Photography: Deanne Fitzmaurice, Doug Grant
Editor: Stan Alcorn
Interview: Doug Grant
Producer: Eric Maierson
Executive Producer: Brian Storm
Design: Jacky Myint
Workshop Director: Jessica Stuart

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