A GLIMPSE BEHIND-THE-SCENES – ‘CIRCUS SPACE’ OPEN REHEARSAL
Tuesday, October 25th, 2011
In a magnificent, old Victorian power station just a stone’s throw away from East London’s Hoxton Square, the UK’s leading centre of excellence for the circus arts is housed. Circus Space – a registered charity with over half of its annual income coming through grants and donations – is a unique melting pot of education, creation and performance offering a diverse range of professional circus qualifications; including the UK’s only BA Hons degree in Circus Arts.
Its graduates are in high demand and many go on to join international troupes such as the Cirque du Soleil and perform at the National Theatre, Southbank Centre and the Barbican. Last week, Circus Space opened its doors to selected guests offering a glimpse into the incredible world of the circus performer and giving a sneak preview behind-the-scenes at what goes into the profession.
On the evening, we were privy to a 45 minute performance in which a group of recently graduated students twisted and moved to a contemporary music beat. Using costumes and props, the artists leapt up 5 metre rods for the ‘Chinese Pole,’ spun around using just tension straps for support, and performed mind-blowing acrobatic balancing acts which took years to master.
Two of the perfomers, Nathan and LJ, began their careers at the London Youth Circus at the tender age of 14 and after studying BA Hons degrees are now both working as professional circus performers. Under the guise and direction of Rishi Trikha, the graduates have been working on a new piece which will be presented at the Circa Festival in France this week, in a programme which will also include some of the biggest and most respected names in European contemporary circus.