A circus has all the magical ingredients for a journey into fantasy. I think back to those circuses under the big top that I visited when a child, bare open area transformed into a city of tents, sawdust on the ground and evocative smells.
Animals were an integral part of the excitement, and one didn’t think too much in those days about the suffering they endured to entertain us. Through my younger adult life there were still old style circuses that would come to town and I am sure I took my own children to watch at least one of these. But I became more fascinated by modern circus that featured only highly trained children and young people. When quite middle aged I even did my own stint with the Women’s Circus as a Mango. How I enjoyed those mad drives to Footscray every week in a car full of giggling women.
Yesterday we had the opportunity to journey into fantasy with Circus Oz thanks to Damian and Vanessa’s gift of a voucher for free tickets at the Lighthouse Theatre. It was hard to make up my mind on what performance to use this voucher. A last minute decision to go to the circus was very exciting.
Our seats were in the very back row behind the aisle so it was possible to take photos, without a flash of course. The theatre looked its usual immaculate self but performers raced around with paintbrushes giving it and us an imaginary transformation before the lights went out and revealed the stage a s a crazy building site.
No animals with Circus Oz of course, using animals in a circus is frowned upon nowadays. But highly trained young people perform feats that seem beyond human possibility and leave older folk aching to be young again.It seemed to me the old gent who struggled up the stairs behind us put as much effort into this act as those young performers put into their amazing feats. As a vertigo sufferer even walking the virtual tightrope with my Wii Fit terrifies me. And I was so nervous watching the tight rope walker on the taut rope that moved up and down as well that I forgot to take a photo, but how beautiful and evocative is this painting by Fourain.
Juggling is a fascinating and less dangerous circus skill. My photo makes it look even more fascinating by showing the movement as well as the cones being juggled. The musical instrument in the corner is not just a prop. It was played with great skill from time to time
Two hours felt just right for this amazing journey into fantasy. I couldn’t think how to tell the old gent struggling to negotiate the steps as he marvelled at the antics of the performers that I felt he himself was quite a trouper. And in the foyer downstairs a friend expressed my sentiments when she exclaimed, ‘It made me want to be young again!’