Age-Defying 74-Year-Old Finds The Circus Through Artwork

ARDMORE, Pa. (CBS) — A local woman is taking on a high-flying feat typically reserved for the circus.

In her art-filled home in Ardmore, 74-year-old Alice Dustin has always done it all despite her age.

“I have a wonderful photo of me at age 3, like ‘do this!’ so bossy Alice started at three,” said Dustin. “That’s how I got into Judo because I took my kids there and I was like that looks like fun why don’t I do this.”

Alice is a Harvard graduate and earned her Ph.D. in French from Penn. She is a proud mother of two and an award-winning painter. Her resume is filled to the brim like her boxes of artwork, but in her 60s, she felt it wasn’t too late to add something else to the list.

And it has something to do with the trapeze on the other side of her basement.

“So I set this up for normal practice and every time I come down the basement I do a pull up,” said Dustin. “I was 63 and there was a picture of a young woman, 30 something, young, strong, capable, courageous, and it was so good I just took out a canvas and painted it. And I thought just like with the Judo this looks like fun why not?”

And if you think that’s all she does, you’re mistaken.

“I juggle, ride a unicycle, and all the aerial stuff: the ropes, the fabric, the trapeze, and I discovered that I loved performing,” said Dustin. “I get one go around, I don’t believe in heaven or hell, and I feel like I have to do it now and this is my chance.”

Alice performs and fine tunes her skills at the Philadelphia School of Circus Arts.

So what will Alice do next?

“I want to stick with these physical things but I know I won’t be able to forever… So I’m trying to find something like clowning.”

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