Posted on February 23, 2012
Circusfest 2012 is a five-week celebration of contemporary circus from around the world, held at London’s Roundhouse. The season features everything from vintage circus carnival and street dance acrobatics to an intimate tale of love, loss and Las Vegas.
The season opens on March 28 with Cirque Mandingue (pictured), a troupe from Guinea, in Foté Foré. This new production fuses circus skills and street dance, to a soundtrack of hip hop and live West African drumming. The company, a collective of 12 Guinean circus artists, is both a circus school and a company, with funds raised through touring going back to the school in Guinea.
Undermän, by Swedish company Cirkus Cirkör, explores the story of three “undermen”, the Swedish term for the circus performer who lifts and supports the “flyer” in an acrobatic act. It’s the true story of three “undermen” who lost their partners in love and performance, leaving their careers in doubt.
Other highlights include Professor Vanessa’s Wondershow, which looks back at the circus sideshows of the 1930s to 1950s, the street dancers and acrobats of Funk da Cirque and Collectif and then… in the new Lost Post, which plays with communication from paper planes to smoke signals.
The festival also includes films, talks and a “Take Part” strand for 11- to 25-year-olds, with workshops and performances.
For more information, see www.roundhouse.org.uk/circusfest
Picture: Cirque Mandingue. Photograph: Milan Szypura