PORT ST. LUCIE PEOPLE
St-Jacques says that
when students of all
skills levels and ages
begin circus training,
they usually return.
“I waited until Billy was away before trying the flying
trapeze,” St-Jacques says. “He was mad that he missed my
St-Jacques was hooked, incorporating dance techniques
on the trapeze, silks and an aerial hoop called a lyra. People
assume that trapeze work requires superior upper body
strength, but St-Jacques says this is a misconception.
“You create momentum with your body and don’t feel
your body weight,” she explains. “I tell students ‘The first
time is for fear, and the second time is for fun.’ ”
St-Jacques and Havik, who married in 2009, enjoy a perfect
balance. “We’re yin and yang,” she says. “I’m organized, I
plan. I’m cautious and into details. He’s the dreamer who
says ‘do it.’ We meet in the middle and feed off each other’s
St-Jacques and Havik were working with Wyndham Hotels
and Resorts in the Caribbean when the economy crashed.
Selling their circus program to the chain, they moved to Montreal
where she found work teaching and Havik worked at a
During their four years in Montreal, the couple became
a family with the birth of their son, Will. And then an offer
came for a job at Club Med in Port St. Lucie, Florida. Understandably,
St-Jacques’ parents didn’t want them to leave.
“At one time, they hoped that we would have more traditional,
stable careers,” St-Jacques explains. “They worried
about the safety of circus work.” But they also saw how
MYLENE “ANGEL” ST-JACQUES
Lives in: Port St. Lucie
Occupation: Teacher at Renaissance
Charter School; managing
director at Momentum Academy;
vice president of Momentum
Family: Husband, Billy Havik; son, Will
Education: Bachelor of Arts with certificate in mathematics
from McGill University; certified circus instructor with the
National Circus School of Montreal
Hobbies: “Do I have time for hobbies? That’s the real question.
When I have time off, I’m looking for circus videos or projects
for my math students or opportunities for our business.”
Who inspires me: “My husband. Everything he does, he’s
good at it. He’s the most motivational person I know.”
Something most people don’t know about me: “I used to be
a professional hip hop dancer back in the day.”
happy they were performing, according to St-Jacques.
St-Jacques was hired to instruct students at Club Med Academies,
a private school connected to Club Med sports training.
She covered academic classes and took care of the international
students. She also participated with her husband and others
performing amazing stunts from their circus act.
In 2019, St-Jacques and her husband launched out on their
own with two partners from Texas, forming a circus training
school. Momentum Academy offers classes for beginners as
well as those hoping to make circus a career.
St-Jacques is proud of their custom-made equipment and
the age-appropriate classes they offer.
“We have 5-year-olds and students in their 60s.”
The company also offers portable rigs that can be set up at
other venues, circus tents and tables and chairs which can be
set up for on-site shows.
The academy is also close to Renaissance Charter School
where St-Jacques teaches middle school math. Connecting
with students is no less challenging than an advanced aerial
“When something clicks with a student, I get so fired up,”
The motivation is different with circus students. They
choose to be there, rather than being required to be at school.
“Once students come to us, they usually return.”
Although plans changed dramatically during the pandemic,
business has started to return.
“We had so much lined up, working with children’s
services, an animal rescue center, a show for the Red Hats,”
says St-Jacques, who is also on the board for the Momentum
Foundation, the academy’s charitable arm.
The foundation raises money to connect underprivileged
children with circus arts classes. They’ve also participated in
events for foster and adoptive families.
“It’s a great bonding experience,” St-Jacques says.
St-Jacques loves to perform, becoming a character in costume
with a routine that complements the music, connecting
with the audience.
“It got me out of my shell,” she says, making her a better
athlete as well as a better teacher.
You might say that along with her other dreams coming
true, Angel has found her wings. E
Port St. Lucie Magazine 33