The Circus Festival is a large event that takes place in France once every 3 years. Performers from far and wide come out to perform at this large gathering and perform to win. The winning team from last year is automatically allowed to compete and they send a Phoenix Ticket to the performers in that team. However, this place is not all fun and games. All the performers are jumpy and nerve ridden. At the Circus Festival, it is not beyond regulations for performers to cheat and lie to win. It is a performing tournament where only the best survive. Before the start of Kaleido Star, Layla and Yuri competed and won with the Golden Phoenix maneuver. But it is also the time when Leon lost his younger sister Sophie in a car accident after Yuri conspired Leon out of the way.
In Kaleido Star: New Wings
Sora Naegino wanted to participate in the Circus Festival to prove to Leon that she was a great performer. But when she became too nervous about performing with him after what he did to May's shoulder, Sora couldn't continue and left May wide open to take her place as Leon's partner for the Circus Festival. However, even though Layla no longer had her Phoenix Ticket, Sora turned to Yuri for her way into the Circus Festival since he was Layla's partner last year. Yuri agreed to let Sora perform with him and they worked together to perform The Angel's Maneuver to counter May and Leon's Demon Spiral. When Sora arrives at the festival with Yuri, Sora discovers just how dark a place the Circus Festival really is (she is not used to this kind of atmosphere at all). When it was their time to go on, Sora was left heartbroken after Mute and Alice, two performers that she thought were her friends, tried to steal their move and use it, only to fail and leave Mute injured. Sora shed tears on stage and dropped out in the middle of the performance, leaving her friends and Layla confused and heartbroken. May and Leon then go on to win.