THE DAILY OKLAHOMAN
Juggling Trio’s Busy Having a Ball
By Sandi Davis
They make juggling look amazingly easy and effortless.
During a photo shoot, the juggling trio Darn, Good & Funny showed a bit of what they’re well known for.
Paul Phariss tossed around three juggling pins, Cindy Marvell juggled four balls, and Kevin Holman threw five rings in the air. They did this in close quarters without hitting each other.
Phariss has been juggling for 15 years. He learned while studying theater in college. He made enough money to pay off his college loans.
“The head of the department suggested I quit and become an entertainer,” Phariss said.
Holman has also been juggling for about 15 years, but started his entertainment career as a child doing tricks.
“I joined a clown troupe in Chickasha in high school and I started then,” Holman explained.
Marvell, a juggler since she was 12, started performing in high school and at Oberlin College in Ohio.
The group will entertain at four 30-minute shows at 7, 8, 9, and 10 p.m. New Year’s Eve in Exhibit Hall B of the Myriad Convention Center, which is linked to the Oklahoma Federal Building.
The three also share quick wit, and an interview with them was full of humorous remarks.
“We’ll juggle dangerous objects like machetes, maybe chain saws, small children,” Holman said with a quick grin. “They’ll be high energy, madcap routines. Some volunteers will be taken from the audience onstage an humiliated.”
The group claims to juggle everything from pins and hula-hoops to unicycles to Twinkies. Phariss can balance a ladder on his face, and Holman said he could juggle Ping-Pong balls in his mouth.
Darn, Good & Funny has been through some changes. There are two original members, Phariss and Holman. “We’ve known Cindy for many minutes now,” Phariss said. The three met each other on jobs in different places and got together. Marvell moved from New York City to Oklahoma to join the group.
“I had an intense year in New York,” she explained. “I was working with dancers in a theater show. It’s a nice change to be away, and in a way this is more fulfilling.”
“We’re very pleased to have Cindy join us,” Holman said. “She’s a legend in the juggling world. We were bowled over she’d come to Oklahoma City from New York.”
“We thought about changing our name, but I guess now it’s a title—not a list of names, but a description,” Holman said.
Darn, Good & Funny has earned several prestigious awards together and apart. In 1989, Marvell was named national individual juggling champion.
In 1990, Darn, Good & Funny won the team division. To stay in top form, they rehearse daily, sometimes together, sometimes separately. Currently they rehearse about 3 hours a day in a meeting room in the Moore Public Library.
Darn, Good & Funny has a busy schedule for the summer of 1994. In addition to their library appearances at Cheyenne, Clinton, Thomas and Weatherford, they will be performing at the World Trade Center in New York, at the International Jugglers’ Association Convention in Burlington, VT in August; and will then be traveling to Amsterdam, Holland to perform at the Oranjeboom Festival in Rotterdam.
No admission will be charged to attend these public performances and all ages will enjoy this family entertainment. These performances are made possible with the assistance of the Arts Council of Oklahoma.
“We give lessons,” Phariss said. “Come by.”
Note: Paul Phariss, Kevin Holman and Cindy Marvell won a Silver Medal in the team competition at the International Juggling Convention in Burlington, VT, in 1994.