Saturday, May 26, 2012

Vladimir and Olga Borisov

Olga was Vladimir's daughter. The Borisov's had been in lions for three generations. Vladimir's grandfather and father started with adults (...), but Vladimir started training his lions at a young age. Nearly all animals he had were from zoo's.

Both Vladimir and Olga stated it wasn't easy. When, after a show, asked if the lions were always easy-going and friendly, Olga said: " ... No. You always have to take care with predators. You can't look an animal into his eye, as it would be a challenge. You can never turn your back at them. It isn't easy at all to train male lions. Love and a strong character are not enough. Training is, like all circus-acts, hard work. There are thousands of details one has got to get used to. Same for the animals ... " (Tiede, pp. 26).

This is Vladimir with one of his males. Same animal to the right. Close contact with predators is always seeen as tricky. Most modern trainers I interviewed stated it's dangerous. But the Borisov's did it, just like many others in those days. Moscow State Circus, 1972.

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