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Gregangelo Herrera, who goes only by his first name, is an internationally acclaimed artistic director, performer, producer, choreographer, and costumer. A San Francisco artist known for his immensely creative productions, Gregangelo founded Velocity Arts and Entertainment and continues to be a mentor, teacher and advocate of youth and emerging Bay Area artists.
For the past decade, Velocity Arts and Entertainment has produced custom commissioned shows, corporate and convention entertainment, themed product launches, educational and interactive shows, full-length theatrical shows and acts for shared performances, community arts residencies, team building assemblies, appearances in television commercials, movies, private parties, circuses, fairs, festivals, aerial classes and more. The company fuses elements from ancient, contemporary, and futuristic cultures, dance, circus arts, visual arts, science, and astronomy.
A third-generation San Franciscan, Gregangelo has been passionate about performance ever since his childhood, growing up in Chinatown and Diamond Heights. "I always knew I would be an 'artist,' whatever that meant,'' says Gregangelo, who in any given show will sing, dance, play piano and drums, perform aerial and rope tricks, while simultaneously directing the show. He also creates the shows, including the set design, characters, lighting, special effects, and costumes.
Gregangelo's professional career began in high school, when he performed in an ethnic dance group, and later at the California College of Arts & Crafts, from which he graduated in 1989. During his student days he created a character for which he is known in the circus business: he plays a Whirling Dervish, an ancient character that spins around in circles. In 1989, Gregangelo began whirling professionally as a member of the San Francisco Middle Eastern dance troupe, the Aswan Dancers. He has danced around the world, making appearances on television and in the theater. While his performances have been used commercially, promoting everything from Macy's Back to School catalog to United Airlines' in-flight commercials, his Dervish act is rooted in the mystical.
Gregangelo is the creator of a museum dedicated to the cosmos. The Gregangelo Museum, formed over a period of fifteen years, is a collection of rooms and objects transformed into a structure of color, texture, and mystical signs. The San Francisco Convention and Visitors Bureau sends visiting journalists and VIPs to the museum when they are looking for one of those "Only in San Francisco" experiences. The Gregangelo Museum was featured on cable TV in House & Garden's Offbeat America road show, and the Discovery Channel voted it a "Top Ten Most Beautiful and Exotic Homes."
After nearly a decade of putting on private shows for nonprofit fundraisers and corporate galas around the world, Gregangelo's Velocity Circus went public in 2005. Gregangelo's Heliosphere Jr. was presented by Children United by Experience, the non-profit arm of Velocity Arts and Entertainment that enriches the lives of youth throughout the Bay Area through performance arts programs. Heliosphere Jr., a whimsical cosmic cruise through the solar system in search of a magical hat, features stellar beings of extraterrestrial abilities, comical mischief, dazzling aerials, unexpected danger, and an action-packed performance showcasing some of the most spectacular costumes and talents in the world.