Michael Trautman started out in life as a fairly normal kind of person. After growing up in Springfield, Illinois, he attended William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri where he studied Political Science with the intention of becoming a lawyer. After four years of college, Michael decided that the legal profession was not going to be as much fun as he felt one should have with their career, so he left school and started looking for something to do that would be fun and fulfilling. In 1976 he took his first Mime class, and in 1977 was invited to become a founding member of Mimewock, a Kansas City based school and performing company. Since then, he has been having fun performing throughout the world, and has achieved a very high level of fulfillment from providing comic relief to those in need.
Variously identified as a visual comic, performance artist, new vaudevillian, mime (gasp), physical comedian, storyteller, magician, and fool, he claims only to be a clown...and not a very traditional clown at that. He has appeared in such prestigious venues as theNew York International Festival of Clown Theater, Festival D’Ete in Quebec, the General Jackson Showboat at Opryland USA, the Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal, and The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. He was featured on WOW! The Most Awesome Acts On Earth, an ABC Television Special, and The Statler Brothers Show on TNN. Obviously he has little discretion. Michael was an Artist-in-Residence at Mabou Mines Theater Company in New York City, and has also been an Artist-in-Residence for the Drama Department of The Catholic University of America where he adapted and directed Alfred Jarry's Ubu Roi. In the 1999-2000 season, Michael was the star clown in the national tour of OOPS! The Big Apple Circus Stage Showdirected by Oscar and Tony Award Winner Tony Walton. In 2006 until 2010, Michael had the pleasure of working with Mr. Walton on the Broadway bound production of Busker Alley starring Jim Dale and Glenn Close. From April 2016 until April 2018, Michael was the Artistic Director and Creative Director at the Maine Circus Academy (aka Circus Maine) where he taught movement, mask, mime, character and performance in the Professional Training Program. He also directed the Youth Performance Troupe, and created and directed the yearly Solstice Circus productions.
In 2010, Michael began working with award winning performer and director Robert Post. Their collaboration has resulted in the creation of Michael’s newest show, KING PONG’S PING PONG RODEO. Keep an eye out (in a glass, on the nightstand, or else at www.MichaelTrautman.com) for current activities and various shows. In his free time, Michael can be found at his home in Portland, Maine soaking up inspiration from his son Gabe and his wife, the lovely and talented set designer, Judy Gailen (www.judygailendesigns.com).