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Tuesday, May 11, 2021
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Circus festival rolls up

Step right up! Step right up and see the Canberra circus community in full swing.

Folks you have not seen anything like it.

While it’s not taking place under a big top, the biennial Circus for Life Festival will treat Canberrans to all the classics from plate-spinning to unicycling and much, much more.

Hosted by Warehouse Circus, the festival covers a range of disciplines to be held at two venues: Belconnen Community Theatre and UC Kaleen High School.

Performers Beth Melmoth, 16, and Thomas Adams, 17, will perform their 40-minute show Elevate, which incorporates lots of highly skilled acrobatics, juggling and chair stacking.

Adams, who has been practising and performing circus acrobatics since he was seven, says he started in a holiday program.

“I fell in love with it, kept going and really developed a passion for it. I’m hoping to pursue a career in it now.”

Elevate will be the first major production of Melmoth and Adam’s four-person troupe, Blindspot Circus.

“Our whole show is basically based on competition,” Melmoth says. “We’re competing in a good way with one another, and we wanted to bring that to the stage.”

“It’s really those fun competitions you have with your mates,” Adams adds.

Circus for Life managing director Aleshia Johnson says the event is a showcase of Canberra’s small but vibrant circus community.

“Warehouse sits at the heart of it as the youth circus, with about 530 members who come to Warehouse each work at our venues in Chifley and Kaleen.

“Then a lot of the professional performers also work as teachers for Warehouse, teaching all of our students from children through to adults and seniors. This is an opportunity for the professionals to perform alongside the kids,” she says.

Johnson says audiences can look forward to enjoying the full gambit of circus performance.

“We’ve got quite a lot of aerial … high level acrobatics, comedy, magic; we’re really going to see a wide range of what circus is.”

Circus for Life Festival is on until 24 November at Belconnen Community Theatre and UC Kaleen High School; circusforlife.org.au

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