Back in July 2015, I introduced a new column where I presented updates on jugglers that the general juggling population hasn’t heard much from lately, but who were quite popular at one time. That first column, which can be found HERE, featured updates on the juggling team DOUBBLE TROUBBLE, consisting of Nick and Alex Karvounis, as well as juggling kick-up master Michael Kass.
In addition, I also asked for ideas on jugglers that you, the readers, wanted featured, as well as any leads on the whereabouts and updates on some of these jugglers. Well, the ideas on who to feature were many. Unfortunately, the leads on tracking down these jugglers were much rarer. Okay, there weren’t any leads at all. But, of the many jugglers suggested for me tracking down and providing an update on, the two most frequent names mentioned by far were Jeff Mason and Edward Jackman.
As far as Jeff Mason goes, I don’t have anything to report, but I am appealing here to the jugglers out there – if you know of a recent update on Jeff or can provide me with contact information on him, please let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Back in the late 1970s and early 1980s, there weren’t many American jugglers who were as popular or successful as Ed Jackman. As a performer, Jackman was unique in his ability to combine a rare comedic gift with a high degree of technical difficulty and expertise. He was successful in his shows whether it was street performing or doing corporate work, and was the king of the college circuit for many years. For over a decade, he was also a mainstay at IJA festivals, starting with LA in 1976. Edward competed in the US Nationals (former title of the current Individuals Championships) five times, winning the title in 1979 in Amherst, and placing second three times.
Tracking down Jackman wasn’t easy. As far as I could tell, it has been 20 years since he attended an IJA festival, and 30 years since he was a regular attendee. I did a lot of digging to find his wife’s name and associated business. I eventually found a phone number and talked to her briefly. She took down my contact information and a few days later, I got a text from Edward. Over the next couple of days, I exchanged texts and emails with Jackman, but really didn’t find out much other than that he didn’t really have any desire to share updates on what he is doing right now. He was never rude at all, but just didn’t feel inclined to share anything. Sorry folks. A few online searches point to him likely having a managerial position with a California based water company, but I can’t confirm with 100% confidence that’s him, nor that the information is accurate or up-to-date. But, I can confirm that Ed Jackman is alive and likes his privacy! Below is one of the numerous television appearances by Edward Jackman.
DAN AND JOEY COUSIN
Dan and Joey Cousin were popular and accomplished jugglers during the mid / late 1990s. Joey won the IJA Juniors Championships in 1994. You can watch his winning act below.
The next year (1995), Joey and Dan, as The Cousin Brothers, received second place in the Teams Championships. Click here to see their silver medal winning act. However, what made them even more significant was Joey’s accomplishments with numbers juggling. In 1995 and 1997, Joey teamed up with Bruce Sarafian, another numbers superstar, to set new records in the IJA Numbers Championships records in the Ball Passing event. In two different years, 1996 and 1999, Joey won the Individual Balls event in the Numbers Championships. He was able to juggle nine balls for over 40 catches (in a time where that was extremely rare) and was one of the first persons to qualify 10 balls.
So, where are Dan and Joey Cousin now? Well, they are both practicing medical physicians. Dr. Dan Cousin, M.D. is a Board-Certified Nuclear and Diagnostic Radiologist currently practicing in Florida. He has degrees / training from Harvard, Yale, Columbia, the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and the University of Florida. Dan is also the founder of several other businesses, including Ivy Potential. In the meanwhile, Dr. Joseph Cousin, M.D. is a Board-Certified Psychiatrist, with degrees and training from Harvard, Yale, and the Weill Cornell Medical College. Joey is based in New York City. Both of these men achieved much in the juggling world in their youth, and continue to accomplish much in their respective medical fields now.
In 1987, as a 17 year old, I decided at the very last minute (a day or two ahead of the finals) to enter the IJA Juniors competition in Akron, since it was my last year of eligibility. Back then, there were no preliminary rounds for the Juniors Championships, so they let everyone in. I threw together an act in a few hours and it showed during my performance. I got ninth place out of 11 competitors. I remember though, that the person who got 10th place that year, 12 year old named Jonathan Rosenberg, would at least get to redeem himself. Two years later, in 1989 at the Baltimore festival, Jonathan won the Juniors Championships as a 14 year old, in a polished routine featuring some strong tricks with balls and clubs. You can see his winning act below.
Jonathan had learned to juggle after seeing Nick Newlin perform at a Renaissance Faire and then learned more after reading Juggling for the Complete Klutz at age 11. Akron was his first IJA Festival. He got 6th place a year later in Denver in 1988. It was in Denver that he met Benji Hill, who helped him to improve during the next year, leading to his Juniors Championships victory in Baltimore.
After his big win, Jonathan continued to juggle, but changed his primary focus to pursuing classical music as a Trombonist.
He eventually went to the Eastman School of Music, followed by the Curtis Institute of Music. Not long thereafter, Rosenberg moved to Israel to study the Talmud in a traditional Jewish yeshiva. He still continued to do music and juggling for a while. Eventually, however, he stopped juggling, mostly due to time constraints and back and neck injuries from over practicing and trying to balance heavy tables. Now living in Manchester, England, Jonathan is married to Chana, who is from Denmark, and they have three sons. In recent years, he has started teaching juggling classes for a boys’ after school club. Here’s a video of a performance by Jonathan and his students:
One of Jonathan’s sons is particularly interested in juggling, and the family likes to juggle together, as is shown in the following clips: