Circus family's patriarch marks 80th birthday

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(AP) – For Brian Dewhurst, the only unexpected thing about his life’s devotion is that people are surprised he is still doing it.

The celebrated acrobat and clown is the oldest performer employed by Cirque du Soleil, the upscale Canadian circus with 22 shows across the globe.

Last week Dewhurst marked his 80th birthday as he would any other work day – by starring in two back-to-back performances of “Mystere” at the Treasure Island hotel-casino on the Las Vegas Strip.

Dewhurst says he never demanded a big fuss on his birthdays.

But his friends and family had something different in mind. They threw him a surprise party and urged the audience to sing “Happy Birthday to You.”

“Mystere” follows a babbling baby as it encounters contortionists, dancers, clowns and acrobats.

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