As we reflect on the past year, we are filled with immense gratitude and pride for the remarkable progress and achievements we have witnessed at our organization. Our mission to nurture and inspire young talents in the performing arts has blossomed, thanks to the unwavering support and dedication of our community, staff, and, most importantly, our students.

This year, we have seen countless moments of growth, perseverance, and artistic brilliance, as our students have risen to new heights, embodying the true spirit of the performing arts. In the face of challenges, they have demonstrated resilience and adaptability, creating a vibrant and supportive environment for creativity to thrive.

In our annual report, we celebrate the accomplishments of these remarkable young individuals, as well as the initiatives and programs that have paved the way for their success. As we look to the future, we remain steadfast in our commitment to fostering a community that nurtures talent, ignites passion, and empowers the next generation of artists to reach their full potential.

Together, let us continue to build a legacy of artistic excellence and make a lasting impact on the lives of our students and the world of performing arts!


Claudine Choquette, Chair & Founder



Les Ailes Du Desir Foundation ( also operating under the fictitious name Miami Circus Arts Center) is a 503c3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to enrich the lives of children and adults in Miami's diverse communities by providing access to education and training in Circus Arts, fostering personal growth, artistic expression, and inclusivity for individuals of all abilities.



To become South Florida's leader in community-driven performing arts training, cultivating a vibrant cultural landscape and expanding job opportunities for young aspiring professionals in the Performing Arts sector, regardless of their learning or physical abilities.


1. Increase enrollment in Circus Arts programs by 20% each year over the next three years, with a focus on engaging underrepresented and differently-abled communities.

2. Establish at least 12 new partnerships with local schools and community organizations by the end of 2024 to expand our outreach and impact.

3. Develop our current scholarship program for underprivileged youth by 2024, to provide financial assistance to at least 10 aspiring performers each year.

4. Secure the acquisition of a dedicated facility by the end of 2023, providing a safe and inspiring space for our Circus Arts programs, fostering community engagement, and supporting the growth and development of the Performing Arts sector in South Florida.





In School and After School training and mentoring in our Allapatah facility.



Summer & Winter camps, outreach initiatives, partnerships with other foundations.



Expand the visibility of circus arts through student shows, artistic collaboration, and youth outreach and its appeal for South Florida young artists.



Providing coaching services and an affordable space for professionals to train all year long. 


Board of Directors



Claudine Choquette started her career as a Contemporary Dancer after graduating from
LADMMI in Montreal and subsequently at London Contemporary Dance School in 1994.
Claudine performed, taught Contemporary Dance and Ballet for two decades and discovered a
true passion and the wonderful world of Contemporary Circus in the late nineties at Circus Space
(known today as National Center for Circus Arts) while initiated to trapeze and other aerial
apparatus. With an undergrad and Master’s Degree of business administration, Claudine also has
a deep understanding of the slightest changes in the business environment and possess a strong
ability to make connections between various global events and world class organizations.
Claudine founded the Les Ailes du Desir Foundation which will specifically focuses on
articulating a structured and progressive training for under 18 years old that meets specific
hardship criteria such as emotional and/or financial distress in order to introduce and inspire
youth by using circus activities and encourage and allow positive self-expression through the
exploration of movement and different circus discipline.



Board Member

Camillo Ricordi is a diabetes researcher based in Miami, FL. He currently serves as the Director of the Diabetes Research Institute, a position he has held since 1996. He is the Chief Academic Officer of the Diabetes Research Institute at the University of Miami and directs the DRI's Cell Transplant Center. He has been active in stem cell research and its applications for treating diabetes, especially Type 1 Diabetes, and specializes in pancreatic islet transplantation.
Ricordi studied from 1971 to 1976 at the Scientific Lyceum in Milan and graduated Cum Laude in Medicine from the University of Milan in 1982. During his medical studies, he completed internships at the Institute of Central Nervous System Physiology of the National Research Council in Milan and later at the Internal Medicine Department of the San Raffaele Institute in Milan.
After graduating, Ricordi specialized in Gastrointestinal Surgery and Digestive Endoscopy at the University of Milan, obtaining another Cum Laude graduation in 1988. Concurrently, he undertook complementary studies at the University of Washington School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri, in the Department of Genetics. He also received training in Immunogenetics and Immunobiology of cell transplants.
Following a stint of military service in the Italian Air Force, serving as a medical officer with the rank of Lieutenant, he took on a role as Assistant Professor of Surgery in the Department of Surgery, Division of Transplantation at the School of Medicine of the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Ricordi's professional trajectory predominantly lies in the educational and scientific domain. He served as the Co-Director of the Executive Office of Research Leadership from 2001-2003, then as the Senior Associate Dean of Research from 2003-2006. Subsequently, he chaired the Dean's Research Office from 2006 onwards at the Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami.
Currently, Camillo Ricordi holds the title of Professor of Surgery and is the Stacy Joy Goodman Distinguished Professor of Medicine. He is also a Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Microbiology, and Immunology at the University of Miami, Florida. In addition, he is the Director of the Diabetes Research Institute (DRI) and the Cell Transplant Center.
In 1986, he was part of a pioneering team at Washington University in St. Louis that developed the islet transplant procedure to address the most severe cases of Type 1 diabetes.
Dr. Ricordi is renowned for creating the automated method for islet cell isolation, known as the "Ricordi Method." This method involves the use of the Ricordi Chamber, an innovation that earned him the Nessim Habif World Prize for Surgery at the University of Geneva in 2001. This prestigious accolade recognizes significant advancements in surgical fields. Ricordi's invention revolutionized the process, enabling the acquisition of a higher number of islets from a human pancreas; previously, as many as five or six organs were required for a transplant.
With an illustrious academic career, Ricordi has published in numerous academic and medical journals, boasting over 1,150 scientific publications, more than 45,000 citations, and an H-Index of 99. He has secured 27 patents as an inventor and has been an active participant in conferences and meetings centered around the isolation and transplantation of islets for diabetes treatment.



Jerome Sordillon grew up with his mother and grandmother a few kilometers from Lyon, France.
At the age of 4, he started artistic gymnastics and began competing two years later. Motivated by
a desire to learn and to reach perfection, he trained for 16 years. His perseverance has been
rewarded many times, winning several medals in French championships. While studying mechanical computer-integrated manufacturing, Confucius’s quote “Choose a job you love and you will not have to work a single day in your life” suddenly made sense.
Overnight, he took off to Canada and discovered aerial straps at the National Circus School in
Montreal. A new life began for Jerome as he learned aerial straps and hand to hand. Jerome won
a medal at the biggest circus competition of the world in Paris (Le Festival Mondial du Cirque de
Demain). Never forgetting where he came from, he works on every continent and for the most
prestigious circus company of the world, Cirque du Soleil. He is now working on Cirque’s first
ice-show, “Crystal,“ and is always ready for new challenges.



Andrew Zaro has a long standing as a financier & hedge fund manager. He is the chairman of a in Cavalry Investments Holdings (and its predecessor) ran for over 25 years as the CEO where he was responsible for the company’s strategic direction and growth. Calvary Investment Holdings focuses on the acquisition of performing, sub-performing and non-performing loans and is also the chairman of the board of Lancewood Capital LLC. Lancewood is a specialized investor in first mortgages secured by multifamily, retail, office, and industrial properties throughout the United States.
Andrew is the current head of the Board of Trustees of Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School, New York City’s biggest private school. Mr. Zaro is also closely involve with Arizona State University.
He is a member of the USC Thornton School of Music’s Board of Councilors, as well as a board member of Town Tennis in New York.
Andrew Zaro and his wife the actress Lois Robbins currently live in Fisher Island, Florida and have four children and 3 grandchildren.



Darya Vintilova came into the world in Kiev, Ukraine. Her journey into the realm of acrobatics and circus arts began at the tender age of three. Both of Darya's parents were remarkably gifted and accomplished acrobats, garnering awards for their craft. They wasted no time in introducing Darya to the world of sports acrobatics and the circus.
By the time she reached seven years old, Darya had stepped into the spotlight as a professional circus artist for the world-renowned Cirque du Soleil. In their production "Saltimbanco," directed by Franco Dragone, she assumed a central role as part of a hand-to-hand trio act alongside her parents. At just twelve years old, Cirque du Soleil extended an invitation for Darya to create her own swinging trapeze act.
After a rigorous 14-month training under the guidance of trapeze expert Victor Fomine at the International Cirque Du Soleil Headquarters, Darya was ready to take her captivating trapeze act on the road once again.
Darya's prowess led her to compete at the esteemed 27th Cirque de Demain Festival in Paris, France. At the remarkable age of sixteen, she secured the gold medal at the festival. Her journey with Cirque du Soleil continued with the touring show "KOOZA," directed by David Shiner in 2007. Here, she innovated a groundbreaking winch trapeze act that left audiences astounded.
In 2011, Darya bid farewell to Cirque du Soleil to craft her own breathtaking trapeze performance. Her exceptional act took her to the 15th International Circus Festival City of Latina in Italy in 2013, where she earned a silver medal and a recognition for artistic and technical integration quality. Subsequently, she became a part of the well-regarded Canadian contemporary circus company, The 7 Fingers, performing in the off-Broadway show "Queen of the Night" at the Paramount Hotel in New York City.
Her accomplishments continued to flourish. Darya clinched a bronze medal for her trapeze act at the 9th International Circus Festival of Izhevsk, Russia, followed by a first-place victory at the U.S. Aerial Championship with her unique aerial hoop act.
In 2017, she took the stage in "The One Grand Show," donning costumes crafted by renowned fashion designer Jean-Paul Gautier. This show unfolded at the grand Friedrichstadt Palast in Berlin, Germany. The year 2018 witnessed her trapeze act gracing a V.I.P. GALA for Huawei Technologies, where she performed before the King of Spain.
Darya's expertise led to an invitation from the Cirque de Demain Festival in 2019, where she joined the festival's "Jury Board." Beyond her circus accomplishments, Darya is a certified yoga teacher, having graduated from the International Sivananda Yoga Organization in Uttara Kashi, Himalayas, India.
With 25 years in her illustrious career as a professional Cirque artist, Darya currently resides in the Caribbean. There, she presents her rejuvenated winch trapeze act at the Cirque du Soleil resident dinner show titled "JOYÀ," a performance that also caught the spotlight on the German TV show "Der Bachelor." In her leisure moments, Darya wears the hat of a professional event planner, crafting remarkable experiences for entities like the Hyatt Hotel and Cirque du Soleil. And during her free time, she indulges her love for the ocean and trains as a striving professional free diver.

Ana Maria


Ana plays a vital role within the Global Strategic Initiatives Organization, collaborating closely with strategic clients to establish extensive and enduring partnerships. Her responsibilities encompass driving multi-year collaborative efforts that guide transformational journeys, and she excels at aligning Google Cloud's strategic vision with senior executives and board members. A cornerstone of Ana's leadership lies in her oversight of the Digital Transformation Partnership program, tailored for handpicked strategic clients aspiring to cultivate extensive and mutually beneficial relationships, all while jointly spearheading industry-wide revolutions.
Before her tenure with Google, Ana's professional journey included a significant role at SAP, where she held the esteemed position of Chief Customer Officer for Latin America. Her focus centered on the pioneering Customer First program, which laid the foundation for customer-centric frameworks and provided unwavering support for clients transitioning to cloud solutions. Throughout her time at SAP, Ana held various managerial posts, including Chief Operating Officer for Human Capital Management Cloud solutions, as well as the Vice President of Global Strategic Initiatives for Latin America.
Ana's academic accomplishments mirror her professional achievements. She boasts a Master's degree in International Business Administration from Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Moreover, she has honed her expertise through participation in the General Management Program at the esteemed Harvard Business School.

Interested in joigning the board?


The general tendency is very encouraging, more and more people are aware of our programming and are coming on a regular basis, helping spread awarness and increasing our revenues, which allowed us to provide more classes, fostering a positive growth throughout the year.



People took a class in 2022



Growth in revenues year-on-year



+25% year-on-year



Miles, that's the furthest a student drove to attend our classes



+50% year-on-year



Presented to Miami-Dade audiences



Of ours students say their self-confidence has improved thanks to our classes



Classes offered per week throughout the year



We are fully dedicated to creating an inclusive space where everyone is welcome and trained according to their specific needs. Our students come from a wide variety of backgrounds and we are hard at work to diversify even further our scheduling to appeal to more communities in 2023. 






Of which 121 are professionals



Nationalities represented between staff and clients






Special needs








Over the past year, we have made a significant impact on local communities in South Florida by providing accessible and inclusive education and training in Circus Arts. Our programs have touched the lives of countless individuals, promoting personal growth, artistic expression, and social cohesion.

Through our diverse range of classes and workshops, we have empowered children and adults from various backgrounds to develop their creative and physical skills, regardless of their learning or physical abilities. Our participants have gained confidence, discipline, and a sense of belonging, while also benefiting from improved physical health and mental wellbeing.

We take great pride in our commitment to inclusivity and strive to ensure that our programs reach underrepresented and differently-abled communities. By collaborating with local schools and community organizations, we have successfully expanded our outreach efforts, offering scholarships to underprivileged youth and fostering a more equitable and diverse cultural landscape.

In addition to nurturing the next generation of performers, our impact extends to the broader community. Our annual showcases and events have brought together people from all walks of life, fostering a spirit of unity and appreciation for the arts. These events have not only provided a platform for our talented students to shine but have also raised awareness about the transformative power of Circus Arts education.

Community events


Split between Career days, affordable events, free workshops and open doors activities



Children from underserved communities reached through our events and outreach efforts



Children were able to attend a class through our Scholarship Fund



Of parents reported a positive impact on their children based on their participation in our year-round programming

Career Day at Santa Clara Elementary
Circus Day at the park
Circus Day at the park
End of school year showcase at Sanctuary of the Arts in Coral Gables
End of school year showcase
Vizcaya Annual fundraiser
Free performance at Vizcaya's fundraiser
Little Light House Foundation
Community class with Little Light House Foundation
Miami Children's Museum
Career day at Miami Children's Museum



We more than doubled the production of original shows last year, presenting 15 shows to Miami audiences and more than 50 activations. With the addition of Nicolas Allard to our team, we can now propose world-class performances to audiences and clients. 



Created as original productions of Miami Circus Arts Center



Our artists performed for more than 50 events through the year for various instutions and clients



For the 4th year in a row, we have seen an increase in revenues, going from 62K in 2019 to an impressive 517K in 2022. This growth is mainly due to the increase of our classes offering, new partners for events  and the constant effort in securing grants and donations from both public and private sources. 



+20% year-on-year




Split between in-kind, grants & events


$20 - $25K

Average donation range

Opportunities for Growth

1. Increase our individual donor base

2. Increase Federal and State funding

3. Plan for Give Miami Day

4. Increase our partnerships with schools and community programs





As the owner of our facility is currently looking to sell, we are looking to gather funds to acquire it to ensure the perennity of our operations.


Growth compared to 2022


Youth from underserved communities reached through our different outreach programs


Community Events


Our presence in Schools afterschool curriculums


The bounds between our team members and Canada is strong, which might lead us to branching out in Canada to develop a new bilateral pole of partnerships and economic development. 


By contributing, you help us provide accessible classes, foster talent, and create unforgettable shows that inspire creativity and self-confidence in our communities.


Miami Circus Arts Center is a fictitious name for Les Ailes du Desir Foundation Inc. (LADD) a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

1395 NW 22st

Miami, Florida, 33142

☎️ (786)478-5891