Popovich Pet Theater Features Comedic Routines

NMT PAS to Host Popovich’s Popular Comedy Pet Theater on February 23 at Macey


Tuesday, February 13, 2018


SOCORRO, N.M. – Herding cats. This phrase has come to define that which cannot, in general, be controlled; i.e., your ordinary house cat who shuns you for that very foolish thought.

Enter the extraordinary animal trainer and circus performer Greg Popovich and his Comedy Pet Theater to show the skeptic that, perhaps not herded per se, but cats can, as well as their canine contemporaries, be taught tricks, old and new.

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Greg Popovich will bring his trained cats and dogs to the Macey Center stage on February 23. 


Gregory Popovich’s Comedy Pet Theater returns for a record fourth appearance at New Mexico Tech’s Macey Center at 7:30 p.m. Friday, February 23, in a Performing Arts Series (PAS) event that features more than 30 animals, all rescued from shelters across America.

The Tech Club Macey is hosting a family night beginning at 5:30 p.m. in the Galena Room of Macey Center. The special menu features popcorn, cotton candy and snow cones. This event is $5 for adults, and free for Tech students and youth.

“Greg Popovich delivers a world-class performance that has always been one of the most popular events in the PAS schedule,” PAS Director Ronna Kalish said. “Popovich’s amazing felines and canines have always drawn an enthusiastic local crowd, and I’m sure this year will be no exception.”

Kalish added that the show is geared toward children and adults of all ages – “and it indirectly supports the need for pet-rescue homes and spay-and-neuter programs to reduce the number of unwanted pets in the United States.”

“Greg’s shows are always awe-inspiring,” Kalish said. “And since he’s been producing his popular shows at Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in Las Vegas as a fourth-generation animal trainer, he’s added several new acts.”

But there is more than meets the eye with the Comedy Pet Theater. For Popovich, the show is animated by a deep love of cats and dogs and a very serious, life-long commitment to helping rescued pets.

“The Comedy Pet Circus is a feel-good show for all families, and we hope to fill Macey Center with animal lovers of all ages,” Kalish said, adding that Popovich and the pets bring a special kind of energy to their performances that translate into enthusiasm and great fun.

One of the main messages of Popovich’s shows is to bring attention to animal shelters, and the many homeless pets and rescue efforts on their behalf. He has said that because all the pets in his shows are rescued pets, he is inspired to “pay back” the shelters, and to try to help other homeless and abused pets at every opportunity.

Popovich and his extraordinary pet partners have been featured on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, the Late Show with David Letterman and Discovery Channel’s Animal Planet. His animal-featured performance was a finalist in America’s Got Talent.


Greg Popovich rescues animals from around the country and trains them using positive reinforcement. Check out his act on Friday, Feb. 23. 


Popovich, who only employs positive-reinforcement techniques in his training, also has authored two books.

The entertainer and successful pet trainer grew up as the child of Russian circus performers Alex and Tamara Popovich. In addition to their juggling and performing skills, Gregory’s parents also were dog trainers.

From a very young age, Gregory formed a special bond with animals, especially his mother’s show dogs, which led to his participation onstage assisting with her dog act. At the age of six, he began to learn the art of juggling. Eight years later, he prepared his first solo act – juggling on a free standing ladder. After the public debut of this feat, the young entertainer became a member of the great Moscow Circus Group at the age of 17.

For the next few years, he traveled worldwide with the Moscow Circus, eventually becoming its star and representative at international circus competitions across the globe. During this time, Popovich completed a special five-year course and earned the degree of “Circus Creator and Producer.”

“You be the judge,” Kalish said. “Everyone who loves animals, and especially owners of cats and dogs, will be delighted and amazed at what is possible with so-called ordinary pets.”

Sponsors for the Comedy Pet Circus are Don and Rosie Tripp, Washington Federal, Catron Courier, IRIS-PASSCAL, Associated Universities Inc. (NRAO) and EMRTC.

Tickets are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors and $10 for youth 17 and under. New Mexico Tech students will be admitted free with their student ID at the door, or can pick up one ticket each at the New Mexico Tech Bookstore.

Tickets also can be purchased online or at the following locations: PAS office, New Mexico Tech Cashier (Fidel Center), Socorro County Chamber of Commerce, Sofia’s Kitchen and El Sombrero.