Christian Stoinev is a world-renowned acrobat who regularly performs hand balancing acts.
The performer caught the eyes of many for his halftime performances at sports games, and he soon rocketed to national attention for his appearance on NBC’s critically acclaimed summer show, America’s Got Talent. Since then Stoinev has gone on to appear on another NBC show, I Can Do That, and has become remembered for his gutsy and creative performances.
His career has truly taken off—but he owes part of his success to the companion he frequently performs with.
Meet Scooby, Stoinev’s partner.
“We got [Scooby] when I was 11 or 12,” Stoinev explained in an interview with bridgeland.com.
“I would play around with him and teach him little tricks. But one night when I was lying on the floor watching TV, I rolled over to get the remote, and [Scooby] followed my movement. My dad was with me and encouraged me to roll the other way to see if he would do it again.”
“He did. Little by little, it developed into something.”
Scooby’s now Stoinev’s secret weapon, and for many, the cute little pooch is what makes his act so appealing. Watching the dog get involved in his stunts can be very enjoyable and fun, which is how Stoinev wanted things to be for Scooby.
“It really started as a game for him, and that’s how I want it to stay,” Stoinev went on to say. “It’s funny because sometimes when I’m training him, people will ask if it’s okay if they pet him because he’s working.”
“I’m such an advocate for that – I want this to feel like play for him.”
Traveling the country for performances, the duo has gained quite a following together on social media, with 13,000 followers on Instagram. Stoinev and Scooby always strive to give these fans and the audience their very best—but occasionally hiccups occur.
During a halftime performance at New York Knicks game, Stoinev and Scooby performed in front of thousands of people. However, at one point during their performance, Stoinev lifted the lid of Scooby’s cage, motioning for him to go inside.
Scooby didn’t listen.
Instead, he sat back on his hind legs and wagged his front paws at Stoinev, causing the audience to erupt in cheers and laughter.
Aware that his dog meant that he wasn’t done performing yet, Stoinev picked Scooby up and put him on his shoulders for a final trick. Balancing on to a pole with one hand, Scooby rested on Stoinev’s back and waved to the audience, putting a smile on everyone’s face.
Following the trick, Scooby had to give his owner one last drop of sass by lifting the back end of his body and walking on his front legs to his cage.
The audience ate it all up.
The duo is happy that their love for acrobatics can make so many people happy. They have big plans for the future that they can’t wait to begin—as long as Scooby can keep his ego in check that is!
If you would like to see more pictures of Stoinev and Scooby, follow them on Instagram at @castoinev.