Comedy juggler Nick Pike tosses laughs around Corley


Makayla Baker

Niamh Quinn a junior mass communications major, holds up a book for comedy juggler Nick Pike to read as he juggles three pins during his performance in Corley Auditorium on Tuesday, April 1, 2014.

Comedic juggler and performer Nick Pike came to Missouri Southern Tuesday evening, bringing to the stage, talent, tricks and endless jokes. His performance at Corley Auditorium brought out students, children, parents and grandparents to watch and participate in his variety show.

Pike has been juggling for 23 years, and started his training at age 11 with a summer folk festival that came to his hometown, Sidmouth, England. Pike earned his BA in Contemporary Circus and Theatre from The Circus Space in London and following graduation spent time performing in Sweden and Australia before landing a job as a cruise ship performer.

He was invited to audition for the TV show “America’s Got Talent” in 2010, making it to the top 48 finalists.

Since then he has been performing at festivals and colleges all over the U.S.

Southern’s Nick Pike performance began with LMFAO’s “Party Rock Anthem” and some three-to-five-ball juggling.

Complete with playful jokes about the diversity among audience members, the juggling advanced to clubs, starting with three and eventually ending with five. Adding a little tension to the air, Pike then juggled an ax, meat cleaver and knife, which he later did again, blindfolded, while walking barefoot over broken glass. Complete with audience participation, Pike’s show had the crowd laughing, gasping, standing and clapping.

Although Pike has always been interested in the technical aspect of juggling and acrobatics, as he has gotten older, comedy has become his favorite part of shows.

“There’s nothing better than making people laugh,” Pike said. “If it’s a joke that you’ve never done before – even if the laugh’s half as big as a laugh you get every week – it feels better than anything. That’s the biggest buzz, really.”

Pike also believes his British accent has helped him land gigs and more easily demand attention.

“I’m funnier here than I am in England, that’s for sure,” Pike said.

Kylee Simmons, an Alpha Sigma Alpha sorority member, was one of the audience participants who held a portion of the limelight who Pike nicknamed “Snookie” during the show.

“It was definitely kind of weird,” Simmons said of being on stage, “awkward, a little bit. But it was still a lot of fun.”

Pike also said he liked to be able to share edgier jokes with those in the audience who are old enough to understand them, while still making the show family-friendly.

“It was a really good show… [and] it was quite nice that the community came out,” Pike said.