Giffords Circus 2017 Tour - Any Port in a Storm
Saturday 3rd December 2016
The 2017 Baroque inspired Giffords Circus show sees acts rolling in including a Cuban troupe, a Hungarian Csikos and a Ukrainian hand balancer. With live musicians providing the music, household favourite Tweedy returns to meddle.
Any Port in a Storm will be travelling through the Cotswolds and into London from Friday 12th May until Sunday 24th September. Giffords Circus is adding a new ground to the tour - Stonor Park in Henley on Thames. Another classic English setting to compliment the traditional vintage circus.
A roaring tempest of a show.
Tickets available from the box office 0845 459 7469 and through the website www.giffordscircus.com.
Laci Endresz makes an impassioned speech at the European Parliament
Wednesday 19 October 2016
ACP member Laci Endresz gave an impassioned speech in the Brussels European Parliament about the values of the circus sector. Laci was keen to point out that definitions such as “new circus”. “contemporary circus”, “classic circus”, and “traditional circus” are divisive terms. At European level we should be looking at “Circus” as a whole and not subdivisions. “All forms of Circus are essentially the same thing” said Laci. ACP chairman Martin Burton also attended the meeting and in a short speech pointed out that in his opinion there was no industry where you see less racism, sexism, and favouritism. Martin said “In the circus we are judged by what we do in the ring not by our race, religion or creed”. The meeting was hosted by Hungarian MEP Istvan Ujhelyi and attended by the British MEP Julie Ward - who proved to be very supportive of all forms of circus. It was agreed that, both through the European Parliament and UNESCO, steps would be taken to ensure that circus as both an industry and entertainment would be classified as CULTURAL, a classification which apparently circus does not yet officially enjoy.
ACP Condemns Killer Clown Craze
Saturday 15 October 2016
Clowns have always been an important part of circus shows and ACP member circuses engage only the very best, highly trained clowns whose aim is to be entertaining and funny, but never frightening. Scary clowns have no part in the circus and the ACP condemns those amateurs who dress up as clowns with the sole aim of scaring people. The exemption would be The Circus of Horrors who despite having Scary Clowns perform in a professional manner and are as funny as they are scary and only perform in the confines of the venue they are appearing.
The Lord Mayor Welcomes Circus Wonderland Home
Saturday 16 July 2016
The Lord Mayor of Portsmouth, Councillor David Fuller, was a special guest at Circus Wonderland recently, at a fundraising performance that marked the first time that the circus has appeared in their home city.
The show has been touring the UK for the last five years, and circus director Grace Arnett was delighted to finally bring the show to Portsmouth where her family have been prolific business operators for five generations.
From shell fish kiosks on Southsea Pier, to boxing clubs, nightclubs, casinos and the highly successful Crown Bingo chain, the Arnett name has become synonymous in Portsmouth with quality entertainment and leisure.
Circus Wonderland took to the road in 2012, presented by Grace Arnett and her close friends from the circus world, Kriss Freear and Paul Carpenter, who perform as clown double act Kakehole and Popol. Grace also appears in the show, and her accomplishments include hula hooping, foot juggling and fire manipulation.
The Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress attended a special performance of the circus at King George V Playing Fields where money was raised for the Lord Mayor’s charities, the Royal Navy and Royal Marines, the NHS Trust for Oncology and Haematology, and Help 4 Special Children. This also turned into a family reunion when it transpired that the Lord Mayor is related to the Arnett family on his father’s side. The Arnetts have been invited to the Lord Mayor’s parlour for high tea when the circus returns home in the winter. Unfortunately the clowns Kakehole and Popol have also been invited so anything could happen!
Kitty cats at Zippo's Circus 2016!
Saturday 16 July 2016
Zippos Circus 2016 has a new pawsome line-up of talented family of acrocats - rescue cats from France, presented by the Borissov family from South West France.
There are 27 cats in total, male and female, all of whom have been rescued. The oldest and Cat Troupe leader is the fearless “Felix”, 7 years, and the youngest, “Junior”, a one year old who was found abandoned in a French shopping centre.
The cats work in teams of six, so they don’t get tired, also they because lose interest quickly, says owner Roseline. ‘They are very difficult to train’ she adds ‘Cats are of course very independent and when they don’t want to work they don’t work. It takes several months to train each cat. They are trained using treats. In the show, and in the show only, their preferred titbit is Saucisson de Strasbourg or the finest paté’.
All of the cats in the show perform natural movements showcasing their agility, and each cat has it owns speciality. Stars of the show are Felix the ‘Supercat’, Junior who walks a tightrope and Rundi who jumps from pedestal to pedestal.
“The legendary Zippos Circus with talented family of pet cats - comedy and cuteness” in GLASGOW LIVE on 21.06.16
“These performing street cats are the cutest thing and have become pampered performers at Britain’s biggest circus - the cats who have become the stars of the show this year” online in BuzzFeed on 02.04.16
Gerry Cottle is back with his sensational ROCK CIRCUS
Saturday 9 July 2016
Bounding out of retirement the effervescent Gerry Cottle is back with his sensational ROCK CIRCUS - a high-energy family show featuring a new generation of vibrant young performers against an infectious, non-stop Rock and Pop soundtrack.
From ABBA to Adele, The Beatles to The Beach Boys and Queen to Britney Spears, all your favourite music from the last 60 years accompanies an awe-inspiring line-up of the world’s greatest acts in circus, comedy and magic for LIVE entertainment to thrill and astonish all ages.
World-renowned Circus Master, Gerry Cottle says: “It’s got my name on it and I promise you a great show LIKE NO OTHER. A whole world of LIVE entertainment for all the family – we think you’ll have the time of your life!”
Wild, wonderful and out-of-this-world, ROCK CIRCUS brings together amazing international acts with a toe-tapping soundtrack and the latest lights and technology in family entertainment for the modern age.
For tour details go to www.rockcircus.co.uk
The Moscow State Circus returns to Scotland
Saturday 9 July 2016
The Moscow State Circus returns to Scotland with its latest & greatest production to date, 7 Zhelainiy, based on the Russian folklore story of Cvetik-Semicvetik, or “the flower with seven colours,” by by Valentin Petrovich Katayev where each of the petals represent a wish and is the perfect back drop for what is undoubtedly the greatest & most famous circus on earth.
Wizard Wacko & is crazy side kick Natalia Mezentceva invite’s the audience to a wondrous & mysterious enchanted garden, a place where dreams come true and a place to see magnificent feats of human achievement, the like of which have never been witnessed in Scotland before.
As our Loveable Buffoons guide us through this tantalising tale, granting wishes to the beautiful Kushka Veslovskaya who plays Zhenya, surrounded by a multitude of flying, back flipping, juggling, wire walking & roller-skating performers.
The Circus of Horrors celebrates its 21st anniversary
Saturday 9 July 2016
The Circus of Horrors celebrates its 21st anniversary as it takes to the road with its latest incarnation. A Never-ending Nightmare,
The spectacular features an amazing amalgamation of bizarre, brave & beautiful acts woven into a Alice in Horrorland type story &
performed to Devil Driven Rock music, Xpertly Xecuted with a forked tongue firmly in each cheek!
Annually the Circus of Horrors plays over 100 UK theatres and this tour has expanded to take in festivals throughout the world including, Glastonbury, The Isle of White Festival, Reading & Leeds Festivals & Download in addition to The Fuji Rock Festival in Japan (twice), the Wacken Festival in Germany plus shows in Chile, Uruguay, Holland, Belgium, Argentina, France, Italy, Ireland, Finland, Hong Kong and Moscow where it became the 1st UK Circus ever to perform in Russia. The show also played an astounding 10 nights at London's O2.
The new phantasmagoria open's in bloody doors this autumn, tour details can be found on www.circusofhorrors.co.uk
'Leave your irony and cool outside, Zippos is dazzling family entertainment'
Saturday 9 July 2016
The Tempohouse, a cultural criticism collective based in Scotland, visited Zippos Circus in Queen's Park, Glasgow during June.
'Thirty years young, Zippos Circus is something of an institution… and with good reason. With its end-of-the-pier humour and spectacular stunts, the old cliche of ‘something for everyone’ applies here. Whether it’s Odka, the Mongolian contortionist, who can not only fit into a bottle, but also shoot an arrow from her toes, or new act Roseline and Nora’s Juggling Pussycats, who are as cute as they are smart, the slick stagecraft leaves other shows wanting. Romy Michael’s foot juggling is both glam and jaw-dropping, and Alex Michael’s aerial daredevil stunts have many a member of the audience covering their eyes, as he hangs upside down with no safety net.
Zippos is one of the most traditional circus shows around, and so the vaudeville antics of ‘ladies’ man’ Mr Lorenz, a spiv with a sense of mischief, are to the fore. Alex The Fireman walks a (literal at times) tightrope between slapstick and death-defying stunts. But it’s the Timbuktu Tumblers and then the Duo Galaxy in the spinning Wheel Of Death who elicit the most gasps, as they defy gravity with wit and panache.
Leave your irony and cool outside, Zippos is dazzling family entertainment.'
TIME OUT Meets Zippos' Felix
Tuesday 24 May 2016
Don't settle for cats doing cute things on YouTube, get along to Zippos Circus and see feline acrobats IRL. To get the inside track on these supermoggies, we negotiated an exclusive interview with the troupe's top cat.
How long does it take to train for the show? "About six months to a year. Of course we can do all the Acrocatic movements for the show easily becauset hey're based on our natural agility, but we need to focus and not get distracted by our fellow acrobats in the ring. That takes practice."
What's the diet like for a highly trained acrobat? "We eat like any normal house cat but our favourute treat is saussison de Strasbourg or a fine pate. We never over-indulge as, being French cats, we like to stay slim and in perfect shape."
I hear that life wasn't always so easy for you? "Sacre bleu! We have sadly been abandoned by heartless owners and experienced life on the streets of France before being rescued by the kind Borissov family. I am the original Acrocat. I was found sleeping rough on a roundabout in south-west France seven years ago."
Is it good to be with a circus family now? "Absolument! We enjoy the circus life and are never bored. W have our own heated circus wagon to lounge around in between shows and an outdoor play area to play or sleep in on a sunny day."
The Association of Circus Proprietors (GB)
Tuesday 24 May 2016
An incident that recently occurred at a circus performing in Wales has been brought to our attention. In this incident a member of the audience was brought into the circus ring and was the subject of what could only be described as a Wrestling move, which resulted in the audience member being knocked unconscious.
Furthermore there appeared to be no trained first-aiders in the vicinity which resulted in him being manhandled out of the ring in a manner that could have been extremely dangerous.
The Association of Circus Proprietors would like to point that the circus in question, Circus Zyair, is not and never has been a member of our association,
The ACP is a government recognised body that serves and advises its members in a whole array of matters that are agreed to protect the excellent name of British Circus, and it has certain guidelines that have to be adhered to.
The actions taken by Circus Zyair during their performance and in the aftermath while the paying customer was removed from the ring would not come anywhere near the guidelines expected for a ACP member.
Audience participation is allowed in an ACP member's show but only if of a non-hazardous nature, and risk assessments and method statements are completed and adhered to by our members.
If ever there was any proof that councils and other land-owners should only let their land to bona fide ACP members then this is it.
Giffords Circus - The Painted Wagon
Saturday 21 May 2016
The summer tour has opened with a bang for Giffords Circus as their whip-crackin’ horse-wranglin’ Hell-raisin’ show opened in Stroud on 13 May. Acclaimed comedy director Cal McCrystal has joined forces for a fourth time with producers Nell and Toti Gifford. Together they have created the scene for a Wild West extravaganza of eye-catching acrobatics and aerialists from far and distant lands, dancing horses, bounty hunting, and gold panning all
to the beat of the ‘Dodge City’ Giffords Circus saloon band.
‘The Painted Wagon’ is on tour throughout the Cotswolds and London from May until September. Book tickets by ringing 0845 459 7469 or online
Zippos educational schools' programme
Saturday 21 May 2016
Each year, as Zippos Circus tours the country it provides educational visits to schools in the towns it visits, encouraging students’ interest not only in learning circus skills, but in hearing of the circus' history and traditions, often as a first introduction to the magic of the circus.
A typical example of this work as a social circus was on May 4th, at Churchfield Primary School in North London. Zippos Big Top was in nearby Finsbury Park, and some of the circus stars gave up their afternoon to help the young people of Year Three try circus skills for the first time, with juggling, flower-sticks and plate spinning.
Free events like this are co-ordinated by Zippos circus education specialist, Ann Dorwin. As well as the skills, Zippos instructors can describe circus traditions and explain the cultural geography of the skills. Zippos also supply a free education pack as an instructional aid for teachers, with fact pages and adaptable activities in history, culture and society, geography, maths, science, arts and crafts, politics, religion, and the importance of diversity, practice and self-discipline.
These circus activities "…promote core virtues of practice, team work, initiative and personal discipline - everything, in fact, that is needed to become a successful life-long learner. It surprises pupils about their own hidden talents and provides living proof that learning is at its best when it's serious fun!" Paul Mills, Head of Drama at The Westgate School.
More details: www.zippos.co.uk
Zippos 30th Year Celebration
Saturday 16 April 2016
Zippos Circus is celebrating its 30th year in 2016 with an all-new production entitled 'Celebration!' on tour in England and Scotland until the Autumn.
Zippos return follows a highly successful Winter season, with a new pawsome line-up including a talented family of pet cats - comedy and cuteness. Also the incredible horsemanship with stunning white heavy horses. They’re really big!
Human skills include jaw-dropping thrills from our trapeze artist, high above the circus ring without a net; some nail-biting knife throwing and the terrifying ‘Wheel of Death’- BLINDFOLD!
Younger visitors enjoy comedy from Mr Lorenz and Alex the Fireman, tumbling from Kenya, Star Wars’ style laser antics, foot juggling and of course Norman Barrett MBE – Ringmaster extraordinaire with his cheeky performing budgerigars. The purrfect family entertainment!
Giffords Circus presents: The Painted Wagon tour
Saturday 12 March 2016
Giffords Circus’ highly anticipated 2016 tour The Painted Wagon is set to enthral audiences this spring and summer. Touring the South West and London from May until September, this original whip-crackin’ horse-wranglin’ hell-raisin’ show promises more of the much loved unique Giffords Circus magic.
New artists and firm favourites form the critically acclaimed company. Newcomers include gun-slinging, rope-spinning teenage Cowgirl Lilian Konyot, along with Duo Lyrical Lyra, two beautiful aerialists. Giffords Circus stalwarts Madame Nancy Trotter-Landry, rodeo rider Dan Fortt, jugglers Bibi and Bichu, El Gifford (STILL WANTED) and funny man Tweedy the Clown all make a welcome return.
The tour will visit popular Giffords Circus stomping grounds opening at Fennells Farm followed by Sudeley Castle, Daylesford Organic Farm, Blenheim Palace and many more, along with a lengthened stretch at Chiswick House & Gardens, London following a rip roaring reception in 2015.
Opening on 13th May, The Painted Wagon tour runs until 25th September. Tickets can be booked through the box office 0845 459 7469 or visiting the website
Russells Circus' whirlwind 2016 tour
Saturday 12 March 2016
2016 is set to be a ground-breaker as we tour with a brand new show, featuring acts that range from aerial elegance to death-defying feats - like the amazing motorbike on the high wire. And, with the jaw-dropping Wheel of Death, this year's show is sure to leave the audience gasping! And, when they stop gasping they will be laughing as (due to popular demand), we are proud to once again have Rusty Russell back in the ring as our principal clown.
The show will be visiting some of the usual towns but also have some exciting new venues coming up. Look out for us coming to a town near you.
Rave reviews for Zippos Cirque Berserk! on its London West End theatre debut
Saturday 13 February 2016
Cirque Berserk! became the first British circus to appear at a London West End theatre for thirty years when it opened at the Peacock Theatre on February 8th to rave reviews from both the national and the theatre Press.
There were four stars from The Stage, who said: "We've seen circus in a Big Top, in a Spiegeltent, even in the Royal Albert Hall. Now this new touring show, founded by Zippo's Martin Burton, happily repackages different elements of the new circus movement to go indoors to conventional theatre spaces. A....thrilling collection of circus acts...." London Theatre wrote that: "It may lack the overall beauty of a company like Cirque du Soleil (though it has a better, far funnier clown), but Julius Green's production has its own grungy industrial power, loudly underscored by a nasty electronic score". They awarded four stars, as did Newsflare, while the London Evening Standard's headline was: "...big on thrills… without the moral fables..." and were delighted to say that: "Cirque Berserk! deserves credit for its pulsing energy".
Read all the reviews at www.zippos.co.uk and see Cirque Berserk! on tour until March 12.
Giffords Circus 2016 - The Painted Wagon
Saturday 26 December 2015
A whip-crackin’ horse-wranglin’ Hell-raisin’ Giffords Circus show. Featuring the Giffords Circus gang: cowgirl Lilian Konyot, Madame Nancy Trotter-Landry, rodeo rider Dan Fortt, jugglers Bibi and Bichu, El Gifford (STILL WANTED) and funny man Tweedy the clown. A wild west extravaganza of eye-catching acrobatics and aerialists from far and distant lands, dancing horses, bounty hunting, and gold panning all to the beat of the “Dodge City” Giffords Circus saloon band.
Doors swing open 13 May until 25 September.
A record year for the The Circus of Horrors
Saturday 13 February 2016
2015 has proved to be an amazing year for The Circus of Horrors with performances in over 100 UK theatres, festival shows in The Isle of White, and a return to The Fuji Rock Festival in Japan amongst loads of others. It it also became the first UK Circus ever to perform in Russia when it appeared for five nights at the 3700 capacity Stadium Live, and followed this with a ten-night run in London's O2. They also found time to make and release their latest DVD, 'The Night of the Zombie'.
As the year draws to an end the show is to return to Amsterdam (http://denachtvlinders.nl/) ahead of another UK Theatre tour, and shows in Jersey and Ireland. A BBC documentary has been scheduled, as well as the release of their fourth Album, 'Something Wicked This Way Comes'.
Zippos final few days in in Hyde Park
Saturday 26 December 2015
Zippos Circus is performing inside the Mega Dome Big Top at the Hyde Park Winter Wonderland event, open until January 3rd, with up to eight performances every day.
Hyde Park Winter Wonderland features a host of seasonal festivities,. In addition to the circus, there are over 100 spectacular rides & attractions, Christmas markets, a wealth of themed bars, cafes, restaurants and street food, plus free live music, all open daily from 10am to 10pm.
The circus shows are performed under the Mega Dome Big Top, the newest and biggest circus tent in the UK,. This year, huge improvements have been made to the seating by Austen Fabrications to create a warm and comfortable theatre style atmosphere.
The performances include colourful clowns, comic jugglers, jaw-dropping acrobats, silk dancers and more. The show is fun-packed from start to finish and, at approximately 45 minutes, is the perfect length for the little ones. A more adult-oriented show is presented in the evenings.
Moscow State Circus presents Winter performances in Glasgow, The Hague, London and Birmingham
Saturday 26 December 2015
After touring the UK and Ireland the Moscow State Circus will return to Glasgow in January 2016 for a Winter Spectacular. 2015 was certainly busy for The Moscow State Circus, and Christmas was particularly hectic. In the Netherlands, the huge Red Unit was housed in its brilliant 2000-seat big top at Den Haag, where its fantastic artistes performed as part of their Winter Wonder-show.
Meanwhile, the White Unit in its 1000 seater big top took residency at Winterville, 'the alternative festive experience' in east London's Victoria Park, where it performed up to 5 shows each day. All these events were in addition to the EEC promotion of a further Christmas show at Birmingham's Star City, before the circus continues to tour the UK throughout 2016.
Academy of Circus Arts Graduation Showcase
Saturday 26 September 2015
New graduates of the Academy of Circus Arts presented an impressive display of well-taught skills on September 13th, when they swapped their caps and gowns for sequins and spotlights at a Graduation Showcase performance under the Zippo’s Circus big top at Peckham Rye, London, to an audience of circus directors and bookers, all well aware that ACA graduates are well-trained performers who are also ready for a circus lifestyle.
The special performance was hosted by Norman Barrett MBE, ringmaster of Zippo’s Circus, who are a main sponsor of ACA.
ACA’ is the world’s only professional circus training school to operate on tour under its own Big Top. Apart from performance tuition, building up and pulling down are part of the students’ training; so is performing before the public alongside their tutors, helping one another out by operating the sound system and lights, making their own costumes, and announcing one another’s routines in and out of the ring.
Among former ACA students is Nell Gifford, founder of Britain’s innovatively theatrical Gifford’s Circus, and also Americans Blaze Birge and David Jones, prize-winners themselves at Monte Carlo before returning to California to start up their own show, the Flynn Creek Circus. Three former graduates have since been awarded Doctorates in Circus and Performing Arts, and others have found work with shows all over Europe and the US, under big tops large and small and in contemporary-style stage circuses.
Giffords final show of their season will support local Charity
Saturday 05 September 2015
Giffords Circus will donate the proceeds of its final Moon Songs performance of 2015 to the charitable foundation Charity Hop Skip and Jump Cotswold, who provide care and support to families and carers of disadvantaged, disabled and special-needs children and adults.
Sales from tickets to the 5pm performance on Sunday 27 September at the circus’ HQ, Fennells Farm, will support the charity’s work in the Cotswolds. Clarissa Mitchell, Hop Skip and Jump founder trustee, said: “It is so wonderful to have the support of our friends at Giffords Circus. Their generosity will make such a huge difference to the families we care for in Gloucestershire. Hop Skip and Jump Cotswold provide thousands of placements every year to children and young adults with disabilities and special educational needs. The performing arts are very close to our hearts and have significant therapeutic benefits to the young people we look after, so we are really looking forward to working with the magical Giffords Circus team.”
Giffords Circus is truly for families, which makes this collaboration with Hop Skip and Jump Cotswold a perfect fit. Their unique blend of circus theatre fusion engages dance, comedy, acrobatics, juggling and live music engages all who experience it, without prejudice of ability.
Tickets for this special show are £22 for adults and £14 for children, under 3’s go free if sitting on a lap. This includes a hog roast for which donations can be made. To book ring 0845 459 7469 or visit www.giffordscircus.com
New Dates Added to Giffords Circus Sell Out Moon Songs Tour
Saturday 08 August 2015
Giffords Circus has this week announced additional dates to the 2015 summer tour. With 7 more performances at its HQ Fennells Farm, Giffords Circus will be giving audiences one last chance to enjoy the Moon Songs show. The extra dates are from Friday 25 until Sunday 27 September.
Nell Gifford, Giffords Circus founder and producer, said: “Without a doubt, Moon Songs is proving to be a resounding success, full of mirth, colour and awe-inspiring people – an eclectic family unit trundling from village to town, and capital to county. It’s been such a fantastic tour so we are thrilled to have an extra opportunity to entertain more people, young and old”.
The restaurant, Circus Sauce, has been packed to the rafters since the start of tour in May. The 60-cover restaurant that travels with the circus will be producing the usual high quality 3 course feast under canvas on Friday 25 September and Saturday 26 September after the last performance of the day. Ingredients are locally sourced and freshly prepared with Fennells Farm providing meat and vegetables during the final weeks of the tour.
Ring 0845 459 7469 or book via www.giffordscircus.com
Photograph by Andrew Rees
The Circus of Horrors makes history as the first UK circus to visit Japan and Russia
Saturday 08 August 2015
The Circus of Horrors has created circus history once again: this year it became the first UK circus to visit Japan when it appeared at the Fuji Rock Festival, and it will shortly move to Moscow to become the first to perform in Russia.
The circus triumphantly performed ten shows at the Fuji Rock Festival, a three-day event that featured more than 200 Japanese and international musicians between July 24th and 26th, making it the largest outdoor music event in Japan. The festival is named after the first event in 1997, held at the base of Mount Fuji, although since 1999 the festival has been held at the Naeba Ski Resort, in Niigata Prefecture.
The circus will also be taking their cargo of coffins & chainsaws to Moscow, where they will also be the first ever UK circus to perform in Russia. The circus's star and director Doktor Haze said: "The Circus of Horrors has become without a doubt Britain's greatest circus export"
To view our new video click here or on the image above
The Moscow State Circus returns to the UK
Saturday 08 August 2015
The Moscow State Circus opened in Folkestone on July 31st with its latest and greatest production to date, based on the Russian folklore story of Cvetik-Semicvetik, or “The Flower with Seven Colours,” by Valentin Petrovich Katayev.
A lost girl finds herself in a mysterious, enchanted garden, in which she is given a flower with seven differently-coloured petals, each of which will grant a wish. The story is of how she uses her seven wishes, and what the final wish will bring. Her journey towards hope and friendship makes a perfect backdrop for this, undoubtedly the greatest and most famous circus on Earth.
Wizard Wacko and his crazy side-kick Natalia Mezentceva invite the audience into the wondrous garden, a place where dreams come true and a place to see magnificent feats of human achievement that have never been witnessed here until now. Our loveable Buffoons guide us through this tantalising tale, granting wishes to the beautiful Zhenya, played by Kushka Veslovskaya, who is surrounded by a multitude of flying, back-flipping, juggling, wire-walking & roller-skating performers.
This year's production features the award-winning Ruban thirteen-person springboard troupe; Stynka on the horizontal bouncing Russian Bar; Veslovskiy roller-skating revolutions; Eliza Khachutryan, ballerina on the high-wire in the roof of the Big Top; Trio Atlas on the Floating Globes; devastating low-wire walker Olga Rozhkovskaya; and Tatiana Ozhiganova, our beautiful dare-devil arial diva.
Circus Starr shares lessons learned in making the Show and Tell App
Saturday 08 August 2015
The final project report for Circus Starr’s award-winning Show and Tell app has been published on http://artsdigitalrnd.org.uk/projects/circus-starr/. It marks the culmination of a two year project made possible by a grant from the Digital R&D Fund for the Arts.
Show and Tell http://showandtell.circus-starr.org.uk/ is a free-to-download, inter-active app designed to help young people on the autistic spectrum prepare for a visit to the circus. Based on the “social stories” concept, children can familiarise themselves with the sights and sounds of the Big Top using a selection of colourful images, footage of acts and captions.
The report outlines the project from initial research, to design and user-testing, through to measuring the impact of the app. It is hoped the lessons learned and insights gleaned will inspire other arts organisations to look to digital technologies to help enhance their offer to their audiences.
Having proved its value in a circus arena, Circus Starr believes the app can be repurposed to help prepare young children, with or without autism, to explore other types of live performance.
Academy of Circus Arts' students amaze at Pangbourne College
Saturday 08 August 2015
The Academy of Circus Arts' students performed at the prestigious Pangbourne College in Berkshire in July, and were rewarded with the thanks, appreciation and applause of a truly delighted college, student group and parent set.
The event was their Leavers' Ball, and afterwards, the college organisers wrote: "Wow, what a magnificent time we had on Saturday night at Pangbourne College! You added a delightful energy to our evening and were thoroughly captivating throughout…. I hope you enjoyed it as much as we enjoyed watching it."
Founded in 1917, and originally catering to about 200 male cadets bound largely for service in the Merchant Navy, Pangbourne now has some 400 co-educational pupils, both day and boarding, Set in 230 acres of wonderful Berkshire countryside, the college is proud of its Flag Values of Kindness, Selflessness, Moral Courage, Initiative, Industry, Resilience and Integrity, that underpin their Christian ethos and help prepare their pupils for life's challenges and the responsibilities of adulthood.
The Academy's students are offered the opportunity to perform at a variety of events each Summer, an experience that is an integral and invaluable part of their five month, full-time circus training. The Academy is unique in that it aspires to give students an all-round experience of the circus industry, rather than focussing solely on learning skills. Perhaps the best proof of the success of their ethos came with the final words from the College: "… you were amazing, thank you".
Zippos Founder and Director Martin Burton invited to the Cuban Circus
Saturday 01 August 2015
Martin 'Zippo' Burton was able to take this photo of the Circuba Circus Festival Big Top in Havana, recently renamed the Trompoloco Cultural Circus Centre, when he represented the United Kingdom as a jury member, in July.
Circuba 2015 is the most important event of its kind in Latin America, and its jury included the leading personalities of the circus arts. Martin Burton represented the United Kingdom, alongside others from Switzerland, Hungary, Denmark, USA, France, Russia, Spain, Mexico, El Salvador as well as the host country.
Martin and the jury were most impressed by the Colombian aerial gymnastics duo of Ribbons Requiem; the young Russian juggler Diana Stepanova from the Russian State Circus; the equilibrist Miguel Reyes from Venezuela's Circosur; and a Brazilian trapeze duo. Also of note for the quality of their performances were the aerial gymnastic duet with spheres of Mexico's Alebrije Circus; German Benedikt Baumann from the Berlin Academy of Acrobatic Arts; and the trapeze duo of Garret and Sadie from the United States. The multi-talented performers of the Cuban Havana Company, from Cuba showed their artistry in a variety of skilled and entertaining routines, and also led in the Festival's opening ceremony at the Karl Marx Theatre.
Martin is now confident that the leading Cuban artistes will be able to travel to the UK to star in a future Zippos Circus' production, and looks forward to furthering the links with Cuba that he has fostered.
Zippos Circus represented at the International Circus Festival 'Circuba'
Saturday 25 July 2015
Martin 'Zippo' Burton, the founder and Director of Zippos Circus is pictured with Julian Gonzalez Toledo, the Cuban Minster of Culture, when he served on the jury of the International Circus Festival 'Circuba', which opened on July 13th in Havana.
Starting with a spectacular gala that featured artistes from host country Cuba and twenty other countries, 2015 was the 14th edition of this competition, There were twenty-nine shows during the event, and in addition to the difficult task of judging the performances, Martin presented a special award on behalf of Zippos Circus, before his return to the UK. Martin took advantage of his time in Cuba to meet staff from the British Embassy in Havana, and ensure that Entry Clearance staff understand the difficulties faced by sponsored Cuban artistes in making visa applications, and the importance to British circuses that our Embassy ECO’s make it as straightforward as possible to ensure British circuses got the acts they needed. Martin said “This was a worthwhile trip, there are some tremendous acts coming out of Cuba, and Zippos Circus looks forward to engaging them."
Moon Songs continues to pull the crowds
Saturday 25 July 2015
Giffords Circus 2015 tour of Moon Songs is proving to be a hit with all sorts. ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ judge Amanda Holden was hauled out from the audience by comic genius Tweedy to assist with powering the tent during his act!
Over half-way through, the Giffords Circus performers are still firing on all cylinders entertaining a packed tent. Currently at Barrington near Burford, the show soon moves on to Frampton, Minchinhampton, Marlborough, Cirencester and finally back to base, the Circus HQ at Fennells Farm near Stroud.
For tickets please contact the box office on 0845 459 7469 or book through www.giffordscircus.com
Zippos star performer hits the headlines in Scotland
Saturday 04 July 2015
The Daily Record interviewed Scotland’s newest circus star at Zippos Circus in Glasgow, and reported how 'Speedy Gonzalez' thrills audiences every night with his incredible tricks, and that his applause 'raises the roof of the Big Top'.
Scotland Now's report and interview told that Speedy would 'give any Britain’s Got Talent winner a run for their money' and described how he skips, runs, jumps and rolls. Speedy, who was born in Irvine, is appearing in Zippos 2015 tour, which includes sixteen towns in his home country. He is owned and trained by veteran circus performer Mr N – a.k.a. Raul Nadler – a former flying trapeze artist and clown who has starred in circuses around the work during the past twenty years.
Raul discovered Speedy as a puppy, seven years ago when he last toured in Scotland with Zippos. Mr N said: “I was shopping in town when I met Speedy’s breeder walking with her beautiful Jack Russells near the circus and I instantly took a shine to him.” Now, on his first Scottish tour as part of Zippos, Speedy has been stealing the show with his impressive tricks and stunts.
He added: “Speedy loves performing but he gets bored with the same routine. It’s like children, when you again take them to the same movie. He can be distracted so I change things around for him all the time.” Ringmaster Norman Barrett MBE, who trains budgies for his own act, added: “You need patience, reward and knowledge to teach an animal these tricks. The animals here are treated very well and live a more fulfilled life than sitting in a cage or walking around on a lead all day long. It’s not easy to be a juggler or acrobat but when you work with animals you are with them 24/7".
And Speedy has no need for a stunt double in the ring, unlike the recent controversy over Britain’s Got Talent winner, Matisse. Given the huge popularity of performing dogs on the TV talent show, with Pudsey also a BGT winner, perhaps we may expect to see Speedy on our screens before long? Mr N said: “I would love to see Speedy get the chance.”
Due acknowledgement to Scotland Now: www.scotlandnow.dailyrecord.co.uk. Photo: Piet-Hein Out
Academy of Circus Arts takes centre stage in Gosport
Saturday 27 June 2015
Academy of Circus Arts’ students and professional artistes performed at the HMS Sultan Summer Show, in Gosport, Hampshire on the weekend of June 20th and 21st, where their Big Top formed the centre-piece of this prestigious event.
HMS Sultan is a shore base of the Royal Navy, and their Summer Show continues to operate under their policy of offering exceptional entertainment at an affordable price, while raising vital funds for local and Service charities. This year’s event included air display areas, music and entertainment and a fun fair, as well as the circus activities that made it a truly great day out for the whole family. The students also presented a special show for disadvantaged local children on Friday evening.
The Academy is unique in offering vocational circus training, on tour with a Big Top circus. Events like this give aspiring performers the opportunity to perform before a paying audience, to learn presentation and how to build a relationship with an audience.
The Academy’s founder and director, Martin ‘Zippo’ Burton said: ‘There are now many more circus schools than in 1993, the Academy’s first year, but none offer their students the performance experience that we do”. Alongside the skills and performance training, students learn related topics that range from make-up and costuming, safety issues and tent-craft, during the five months residential course.
More details at: www.academycircusarts.org
Giffords Circus takes London by storm
Saturday 27 June 2015
For two weeks since 11th June, Giffords Circus, the iconic Cotswold touring circus, has been entertaining London crowds at Chiswick House and Gardens in West London with their Moon Songs tour. The tent has been packed out with jostling school children, family gatherings, hen parties and London glitterati, all keen to get in on the action. A recent 4* review in The Sunday Times and listings in The Evening Standard and local publications, has ensured that the crowds have flocked to see the likes of Tweedy, Bibi and Bichu, as well as new faces that Nell Gifford and Cal McCrystal have brought in for this year’s show.
And the travelling 60-seater restaurant Circus Sauce has also been fit to burst too!
Next stop Oxford University Parks opening on Friday 26th June.
Five Star reviews for Zipppos Circus in Scotland
Saturday 27 June 2015
Kayreen Di Folco of 'What's good to do' gave Zippos Circus the maximum five stars in her review of their June 13th performance in Victoria Park, Glasgow.
"Screams were heard! I found myself sitting with my hands over my eyes at one point, looking through my fingers, as I couldn’t look away! The variety of acts was brilliant, the change up every few minutes held the attention of the audience for with whole show. I heard a few gasps and saw a few hands reaching up to mouths throughout the evening.
To sum it up in three words (as one is just not enough), the show was a gripping, captivating and extraordinary show of pure superhuman talents. I think the fact that the end of the show was met by a standing ovation from the Glasgow crowd, young and old, proves how much everyone loved it."
Read the full preview online at:
Pictured above is Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon with Ringmaster Norman Barrett MBE and members of Zippos company. Zippos will be on tour in Scotland until August 12th.
OMG! Zippos Circus attracts top Scot!
Saturday 20 June 2015
Zippos Circus ‘OMG!’ Tour of Scotland has attracted one of the most influential women in the world!
Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s First Minister, spent time chatting to Martin Burton, the Founder and Proprietor of Zippos Circus, and their legendary Ringmaster Norman Barrett MBE on the first day of their much publicised tour of Scotland.
Dressed in an identical suit to Norman, she happily posed for photos with the cast of this year’s gold-rated show.
Billed as a thrill-packed two-hour spectacle for all the family, Zippos Circus ‘OMG!’ has been attracting five-star reviews and record audiences at all its venues.
Martin Burton said: “It was great to meet Nicola on our opening night in Glasgow, she’s an amazing lady who is probably used to acting as a Ringmaster at the Scottish Parliament in Holyrood!”
Zippos Circus will be touring Scotland until mid August. For further details please visit: www.scotlandsfavouritecircus.co.uk
Circus of Horrors 2015 World Tour
Saturday 13 June 2015
The Circus of Horrors will commence its summer world tour with performances at The Isle of Wight Festival, The Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival, Beautiful Days festival, The Great Dorset Steam Fair plus Fuji Rock Festival in Japan and it will become the first UK circus ever to perform in Moscow. These events are in addition to various 2015 theatre dates,.
The summer shows will see Britain's greatest circus export line up alongside, Muse, Foo Fighters, Motorhead, Happy Mondays, Blur, Billy Idol, Kaiser Chiefs, Manic Street Preachers, The Proclaimers, Fleetwood Mac and loads more.
For full details go to www.circusofhorrors.co.uk
Circus Wonderland comes home
Saturday 13 June 2015
When Circus Wonderland appeared for the first time in King's Lynn recently, it was a chance for Kakehole the Clown to enjoy a family reunion in his home town. As soon as he was 16, Kakehole, aka Kriss Freear, packed up his belongings and ran away with the circus. His parents, John and Shirley, and the rest of the family all still live in King's Lynn and the family were reunited at the Big Top ahead of the show’s opening night.
Kriss loves his magical job, having always wanted to be a clown. He said: “I just love entertaining people and knowing that no day is ever the same. There are not many people lucky enough to have the job they always dreamed of.”
Having spent time with various circuses, Kriss teamed up with Paul Carpenter in 2002 to form ‘The Popolinos’ comedy duo, a traditional musical clown double act, and have achieved great success. The Poplinos went one step further in 2012 when they launched Circus Wonderland, not only clowning around but also taking on the roles of circus directors.
It had long been a dream of Kriss’s to return to his home town, and after several years of negotiation he obtained permission to open on the Walks Recreation Ground, the first circus in nearly twenty years to appear on this once prestigious circus site.
Academy of Circus Arts Graduation Show 2015
Saturday 02 May 2015
The Academy of Circus Arts has announced that their 2015 Graduation Show will take place on Sunday, September 13th at 7pm on Peckham Rye Common, London SE15.
This year’s intake of students have just started their five month long training course, and in only two weeks’ time the nine young people pictured above will perform to the public for their very first time. This year, the Academy’s students are from the USA, Holland, Mexico, Polynesia and Australia as well as from the UK. They will now be on tour in England and Scotland until September, training and performing under their own circus Big Top.
Iconic British milliner Philip Treacy to collaborate with Giffords Circus
Saturday 02 May 2015
Philip Treacy will design twelve bespoke pieces for Giffords Circus’ 2015 summer tour ‘Moon Songs’. Headwear by the internationally famed milliner will be worn by Giffords’ Ethiopian troupe.
Giffords founder Nell Gifford visited Philip’s London studio with creative designer Lindsay Pugh and Director Cal McCrystal. Nell said: “We are privileged and excited to be working with Philip, and thrilled to announce our collaboration. I’ve long been an admirer of his.”
Philip said: “There is a real synergy between my work and that of Giffords Circus: we both pride ourselves on our expert craftsmanship, originality and theatricality. I’m really looking forward to working on a new challenge and creating something unique for Moon Songs. I love when hats make your heart beat faster and on each hat I spend as much time as it requires to become extraordinary. Combined with Lindsay’s stunning costumes and Nell’s vision, Moon Songs promises to be a phenomenal show.”
Moon Songs invites audiences to enter the world of the Victorian Luna Park, a fairground run by illusionist and man of magic and mystery, Odoroff, and his Little Man assistant, David. Both firm favourites and exciting newcomers will be among the critically acclaimed company.
Moon Songs opens on 15 May and tours until 20 September across the Cotswolds and South West, and will visit London’s Chiswick House and Gardens.
For dates, locations and to book tickets, visit www.giffordscircus.com or call the Box Office on 0845 459 7469.
Giffords Circus to play Chiswick House & Gardens Moon Songs 2015
Saturday 28 March 2015
In 2015, Giffords Circus will decamp to London for the first time in over 10 years. Each summer, this family-run vintage circus returns with a show for families and film stars alike. They experiment with the circus form, and weave theatre, opera, dance and puppetry into a fun-filled 90 minutes. They are always idiosyncratic, beautifully designed creations featuring a live orchestra, clowns, acrobats, horses, handmade costumes and a much-loved goose.
Acclaimed Director Cal McCrystal returns for his fourth year. He said: “It is very exciting to be bringing the most beautiful circus in England from its home in the Cotswolds to play in one of London’s most picturesque settings.”
It’s the perfect setting for the signature burgundy and gold showmen’s wagons and billowing tent. Moon Songs invites audiences to enter the world of the Victorian Lunar Park, a fairground run by larger than life illusionist and man of magic and mystery, Orodoff, and his Little Man assistant, David. Clown Tweedy is shot from a cannon to become the man in the moon, a bear gallops on a pony, carousel horses come to life, the weather in the tent turns wintry, and chaos reigns in this topsy turvy lunatic world.
There will be 24 performances at Chiswick House & Gardens from 11th June to 24th June. For a full list of show times, dates and locations, and to book tickets please ring 0845 456 7469 or visit www.giffordscircus.com
Circus Starr’s autism app wins innovation award
Saturday 14 March 2015
Circus Starr’s Show and Tell app has won the Best New Technological Innovation Award at the National Autistic Society’s (NAS) Autism Professionals Awards. It was presented by NAS President Jane Asher (above left) and Chief Executive Mark Lever on 3rd March.
Project Manager Cath Logan commented, “After 28 years providing accessible and inclusive live performances, we’re thrilled that our work in this field is recognised by the NAS in this way. This has really put us in the spotlight and we now advise arts organisations how the app can help them support children with autism.”
Carol Povey, Director of the NAS Centre for Autism, added: “Autism is a specialist field which attracts many talented and dedicated individuals so it takes something extraordinary to stand out, especially in a year in which we received a record number of nominations.
The work of Circus Starr hasn’t just benefited the children and families its app supports, it’s a fantastic example to others working in the field of autism."
With funding from the Digital R & D fund for the Arts Circus Starr collaborated with Dr Tracey Piper-Wright (University of Chester), Therapy Box and the NAS to produce an app that can be tailored to suit the specific needs of a child in preparation for a trip to the circus. Photographs, footage from the show and text help familiarise children with unknown experiences that may otherwise cause anxiety.
Download the free app here:
Five-star reviews for Zippos Cirque Berserk
Saturday 21 February 2015
Zippos Cirque Berserk, currently mid-way through a tour of the UKs major theatres, has received rave reviews, including 5 Stars from the Sun newspaper. Critics from both the local and national Press have been fulsome in their praise for this exciting new production, created by Martin 'Zippo' Burton and Julius Green.
The Sunday Telegraph described Cirque Berserk as 'unbearably exciting' in their four-star review, Time Out's four stars were for the 'heart-stoppingly good fun' while The Daily Mail said the show would 'leave you astonished'. The Sun visited Cirque Berserk's opening night inside the Mega Dome Big Top at Brent Cross, on February 14th, where a packed house enjoyed a spectacular show that culminated with the thrills of the world-famous motorcycle Globe of Terror.
The tour will continue until March 22nd - dates and venues are online at www.cirqueberserk.co.uk
Zippos Cirque Berserk is nominated for a Manchester Theatre Award
Saturday 7 February 2015
Britain’s favourite contemporary thrill circus is midway through a major nationwide tour of leading theatre venues, and is receiving four star reviews throughout the UK. The latest accolade is a nomination for the prestigious Manchester Theatre Awards, which will be given on March 13th at the Royal Northern College of Music.
Direct from four sold-out seasons in London’s Hyde Park Winter Wonderland and a packed-out 2014 theatre tour, Zippos Cirque Berserk combines contemporary “cirque” style skills with off-the-scale thrilling stunt action, in a danger-filled spectacle that will amaze audiences of all ages.
It includes the world’s most dangerous circus act, the legendary Globe of Terror, with 3 motorcyclists speeding at over 60mph inside a steel cage, seen for the first time live on stage in the UK (“off the scale awesome” – Daily Telegraph).
Plus a troupe of over thirty jugglers, acrobats, aerialists, dancers, musicians and death-defying stunt men are joined by award-winning physical comedian Tweedy (“The best Clown I have ever seen” – The Guardian).
Stephanie and Peter are tying the knot!
Saturday 24 January 2015
We are proud to announce the engagement of Peter Arnett, Son of Pip and Stacy Arnett of Circus Wonderland and Stephanie Randelle, Daughter of Russ Randelle of Happy's Circus.
Director, Happy Promotions Ltd
Actress Sarah Gordy to launch Circus Starr’s new year Variety Show
Saturday 13 December 2014
Circus Starr’s patron actress Sarah Gordy will be launching the Circus with a Purpose’s new year Variety Show with a personal appearance and photo call at the Brighton show.
Sarah was recently featured in The Guardian for challenging and changing perceptions through her wide ranging work. Charming and inspirational she is a charity ambassador, public speaker and campaigner “I am different, that is good.” Sarah also has Down’s Syndrome.
Sarah is Circus Starr’s number one fan ‘I just love their audiences … they are the happiest in the world’ she told the ACP.
Audiences are in for a treat this January when Ringmaster Robert Price presents Circus Starr’s ‘Raise The Roof’ variety show in theatres and community centres throughout the UK. This year’s spectacular features internationally acclaimed Mexican clown and performer Chico Rico with ever-popular entertainer Peanuts, alongside a mesmerising display of some of the world’s greatest circus skills from Las Chicas Morales and many others.
The Circus of Horrors 20th Anniversary Tour: 'The Night of the Zombie'
Saturday 8 November 2014
The show that stormed into the finals of Britain's Got Talent and became a West End theatre smash-hit, is going back on tour to mark its 20th Anniversary.
The profile of The Circus of Horrors has taken a tremendous leap since rampaging into the finals of 'Britain's Got Talent', and, to date, it remains the only circus ever to reach the ultimate round of this famous contest. 2013 saw another giant step forward for the show, when it began a series of London dates and became the first circus to appear in a West End theatre for 100 years.
The Circus of Horrors' latest incarnation ‘The Night of the Zombie’, is set in the year 2020, and takes place in a decrepit and corpse-ridden London, plagued by a horde of Zombies. The story twists and turns with grisly murders and sensational shocks before climaxing in an awesome, flaming apocalypse. The tale is interwoven with some of the greatest and most bizarre circus acts: sword swallowers, knife throwers, dare-devil balancing acts, astounding aerialists, a demon dwarf, a Guinness World Record-holding ‘Hairculian’ hair-hanging beauty, the Sinister Sisters, gyrating and fire limbo-ing acrobats, and much more: an almighty cast, each with their forked tongues firmly in their cheeks. It features the devil-driven rock 'n’ roll of Dr Haze & The Interceptors from Hell.
"...if Quentin Tarantino had directed Cirque Du Soleil then you would be only half way there".
Fundraising for refugees, at Giffords Circus
Wednesday 5 November 2014
Giffords Circus combined their end of season party with a fundraising event for the UNHCR (United Nations High Commission for Refugees), to support the work they are doing for the displaced Syrian peoples. It was a fantastic event with an electric performance of ‘The Thunders’, followed by a hog roast provided by Nell and Toti Gifford.
Thanks to all who came, saw and donated.
Gandey’s Circus returns to the Midlands
Wednesday 5 November 2014
After a successful run in Liverpool during the February half-term school holiday, Gandey’s All Human Thrill Circus has been on the road again, visiting the intu Merry Hill Shopping Centre in Brierley Hill. This time, the circus presented ten full-days of performances during the October half-term break.
It’s the first time in more than twenty years that a Gandey’s Circus Production has performed in the area, and they entertained and enthralled families from all over the West Midlands. In past years, Gandeys toured extensively at venues from Perry Park and Kings Heath in Birmingham, to Dudley Zoo in the heart of the Black Country. It was therefore a great pleasure to be able to share with a new generation, their own take on the magic of the circus.
The photo above shows Gandey's Circuses: old, and new.
Free place and bursaries for the Academy of Circus Arts 2015
Saturday 18 October 2014
The Academy of Circus Arts has one free place available on their 2015 Circus Skills Diploma course, and bursaries are now available to all applicants.
The present economic recession has reduced the availability of funding or sponsorship from arts bodies and similar organisations, and the Academy is delighted to announce that one free place, and a number of bursaries that can provide up to half of the course fee are available to students applying for 2015. In the main, these are offered by individuals from the circus industry who wish to help new talent, and who are concerned that the expenses of training may exclude some applicants.
This full-time residential course takes place on tour in the UK as vocational training with a real travelling circus, from May 1st until September 16th. Students can learn a variety of circus skills while performing most weekends at festivals and family events, whether they are a beginner or seek a professional training opportunity, working with world-class tutors. No previous circus experience or skills are necessary.
ACA graduates now perform around the world, from emerging companies creating innovative new work, to world leaders that include Cirque du Soleil. Others teach circus skills, two graduates won an award for their doubles trapeze routine at the 2014 Monte Carlo Circus Festival, and three graduates have successfully created and presented their own travelling circuses.
Applications are now open, and more details are at www.academycircusarts.co.uk
Circus Starr helps autistic children with Show & Tell app
Saturday 11 October 2014
Circus Starr - the circus with a purpose – is playing to packed houses throughout its autumn tour. The new Show and Tell app is proving a great success in helping children with autism prepare themselves for a visit to the circus and hundreds of children have already attended their first ever live performance thanks to the app. Circus is a very accessible art form for children with additional needs so we hope the app will open up outings such as these to a brand new audience of over 2.8m people in the UK whose lives are touched by autism.
The autumn tour #circusselfie twitter campaign has been a great success … as Mathew will testify!
“Mathew is autistic and this kind of thing is normally very stressful for both of us, but the app helped him understand a bit in advance what was happening and we had a great time. Thank you!”
New ‘Circus of Horrors’ to tour Italy
Saturday 4 October 2014
Dr Haze, the creator of The Circus of Horrors, joined forces with the Bellucci family in Italy in mid-September to introduce a new version of the show, which will perform on tour in that country. The Italian Circus of Horrors will include many of the acts and themes that have featured in the UK during the past twenty years, and will perform under a brand-new, black Big Top.
Dr Haze commented that: “Imitation is said to be the sincerest form of flattery, but to be honest I have been more than a little annoyed when other shows in different parts of the world have simply stolen my ideas and my registered trade-marks. It’s therefore great to have teamed-up with the Belluccis, and means that this winter will see two units of the official show on tour: one in the UK from October 24th, and a new one in Italy.”
Circus Berlin artistes featured in BBC drama-documentary
Saturday 4 October 2014
The inspirational and incredible story of Neil Baldwin has been shown on BBC television, starring Golden Globe-winning actor Toby Jones. ‘Marvellous’ told of Neil’s extraordinary life, refusing to adopt the label of ‘learning difficulties’, including his years performing as Nello the Clown with Sir Robert Fossett’s Circus. The circus performers in the programme were from Continental Circus Berlin.
“…Great programme on BBC on Thursday, called ‘Marvellous’ about Neil Baldwin, aka Nello the Clown. Nello used to visit all the circuses I (John Haze) worked for as a kid, and I knew him pretty well. I remember going for a drink with him on my 19th birthday in Trentham Gardens, but I hadn’t seen him for years until he came to a Circus of Horrors show. He said he was going to see England play at Wembley the following day, and that Kevin Keegan had invited him. I thought “of course he has, Nello” - how wrong could you be! Great programme, well done to the BBC for making it, and well done Nello; I’m proud of you.”
New Moscow State Circus Big Top scheduled for Bristol and London
Saturday 4 October 2014
The brand new state-of-the-art Big Top used by The Moscow State Circus in Paignton is due for a second outing, to be at Bristol’s Durdham Downs.
It’s the first tent of its style to be used in the UK, and has certainly been the talk of the circus world since its debut at the end of August. If anyone should miss seeing the circus in Bristol, they will be able to catch this amazing show in its sensational new home, on Clapham Common, London from October 22nd until November 2nd.
The Academy of Circus Arts’ 22nd annual Graduation Show
Saturday 4 October 2014
This year's circus students presented the work they had created during their training to a packed Big Top on Peckham Rye, on September 14th. An awards ceremony and reception followed the show.
The Academy of Circus Arts wishes to express its gratitude to Martin Burton, Director of Zippos Circus for providing the facilities to enable this Graduation Show to take place, and for the help, advice and support given during 2014. We thank Norman Barrett, Ringmaster of Zippos Circus for the help, technical assistance and support he has given.
We also thank the ACA board of directors who give their time to foster new talent: Martin ‘Zippo’ Burton; Chris Barltrop, now a circus consultant and previously Director of the Moscow State Circus; writer and broadcaster Dea Birkett; theatre producer Julius Green; and Beau Denning who is Head of Brand Development for Zippos Circus. Our Associate Directors are David Jones and Blaze Birge, about to tour the USA with their own Flynn Creek Circus. Greg Milstein is from New York and a circus performer for over 25 years. He was the first American artist to work in the Soviet State Circus Ring. Ann Dorwin has been an aerialist for over 20 years, performing flying trapeze, single trapeze, web rope, cradle, trampoline and ground acrobatics with many circuses. Captain Hugh Leach, MBE, OBE has long been a staunch advocate for the circus for over 60 years and remains a great advocate for ACA.
The Festival Circus shone through at a wet and soggy White Horse Show
Saturday 6 September 2014
The Festival Circus performed at the file:///Users/stanbrown/Documents/Sites/ACP/Online/img/nstar.jpgannual White Horse Show in Uffington during the August holiday weekend, and highlighted the value of such an all-weather attraction during Monday's torrential downpour.
The Show was started over forty years ago by local villagers to raise funds to replace the Village Hall in Uffington, Oxfordshire. This was achieved in 1975 when the Thomas Hughes Memorial Hall was officially opened. Since then the event has continued to support local associations and charities through the White Horse Show Charitable Trust.
With the motto “Countryside, Family and Fun”, it's a traditional two-day country show, located in fields overlooked by the famous bronze-age figure of the Uffington White Horse. The event offers a wide range of attractions for families and people of all ages including arena events, craft stalls, animals and historic vehicles. This year was the first appearance of the Festival Circus, and although many outdoor attractions had difficulties when the heavens opened on Monday, the Festival Circus shone through as an all-weather attraction with its dry and comfortable Big Top.
Organiser Trudy Hansen complimented the circus as a great success, while Festival Circus manager Polly Jay said "It went beyond wet - when we came to take down the Big Top I suggested wearing swimsuits!". The circus also featured on the front page of the Oxford Mail the following day.
Photo by Ryan Cowan - www.ryancowan.com
Circus Starr launches ground-breaking new app to bring Big Top delights to children with autism
Saturday 30 August 2014
Circus Starr has launched a brand new, interactive visual story app to help children with autism access live performance. The app, Show and Tell, is available free of charge from the Apple store and can be used on iPhone or iPad.
Because new experiences and environments can cause anxiety in children on the autistic spectrum, visual stories are often used to help a child envisage a situation in advance and so help reduce stress at the actual event.
Show and Tell provides a photographic feast of live action circus images, exclusive behind-the-scenes material as well as show footage to help children familiarise themselves with the circus experience before going. The content can be personalised to the specific needs of each child and children can even put themselves into their stories by uploading their own images, footage and text.
The app’s launch coincides with the start of Circus Starr’s sell-out, 27-venue autumn tour and will enable hundreds of children to enjoy and engage with the show like never before.
Circus Starr Director Neville Wilson explains the project’s inspiration: “Being able to spend time with your family having fun is important for every child’s well-being. However, this is not always possible for families whose lives are affected by autism. Show and Tell enables us to reach even more children by giving them tangible support before, during and after our show.”
Download the free app here: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/circus-starr-show-and-tell/id906662040?mt=8
Moscow State Circus celebrates new state of the art Big Top
Saturday 30 August 2014
The Moscow State Circus has taken delivery of a brand new state of the art big top, the first of its kind in the UK. It measures an astounding 44 meters x 95 meters.
This is the first of these combined Big Top / Foyer made by Italian tent experts Canobbio and is a fitting home for the Moscow State Circus the most famous circus on earth.
Paul Archer described the new tent, seen here in its first UK residence on Pagination Green as ‘A piece of magic, enchanting & would fill the people seeing it with Awe in the same way that a child feels the first time they see the Princess Castle in Disney world’
Zippos Circus 'Open House' training demonstrations
Saturday 16 August 2014
Zippos Circus is proud of its record of outstanding animal welfare and husbandry, and holds an 'Open House' session at each of its weekly venues, when visitors may see their horses in their quarters and ask questions of their trainers.
As well as the educational aspects of these events, Zippos believe that a greater awareness of their animal welfare, methods and policy will be valuable to all who are interested in both the circus and in animals in performance, and who wish to gain first-hand experience of their operation.
Admission is free, and while visitors are asked to register in advance to help assess the number attending, they are also welcome to register on the day. There is no age restriction, but children under 14 years must be under the supervision of a responsible adult. Admission remains at the discretion of the management,
Details are on Zippos website at: www.zipposcircus.co.uk
Academy of Circus Arts Graduation Show 2014
Saturday 16 August 2014
The Academy of Circus Arts will present its 22nd Annual Graduation Show on Sunday, September 14th on Peckham Rye, south-east London.
Zippo's Circus has generously offered the use of its Big Top for the event, and this year's students will perform their final pieces before an invited audience that will include circus directors, artiste agents and others from the world of youth circus and the performing arts.
The Academy of Circus Arts is Europe’s only travelling circus school. Students leave home to live and travel with the circus for five months, with the Big Top that is its classroom. During this time they may perform at events like county shows, or provide educational activities for schools, Scouts and Girlguiding. Alongside the performance and skills training, students learn how to teach basic circus skills and are coached in related aspects ranging from health and safety to make-up.
Since its conception in 1993 the Academy has trained more than 150 young people. Several graduates appeared in the aerial performances at the Millennium Dome, others have progressed to teaching circus skills, and three graduates have created and successfully toured their own traveling circuses.
Moscow State Circus juggler entertains at football match
Saturday 16 August 2014
Juggler Zorah Oganisyan from the Moscow State Circus made a visit to Plymouth Argyle FC on August 12th, during the circus' visit to Central Park in Plymouth, and entertained a crowd of more than 3000 supporters at half-time during their home fixture against Leyton Orient FC.
Moscow State Circus' Director John Haze commented: "Ironically he juggled 5 balls on a large rolling football globe and the game ended 3-3 with Orient winning 6-5 on penalties."
The Moscow State Circus performed in Plymouth for 12 days, before continuing on its tour of the West Country.
North Wales welcomes John Lawson's Circus
Saturday 03 August 2014
John Lawson's Circus is now touring North Wales, as part of their 40th Anniversary Tour. Their welcome has been the traditional warm one from locals and holiday-makers alike. Venues lined up for visits include Porthmadog, Pwllheli, Beaumaris, Benllech, Almwych, Holyhead, and Carenarfon.
New Summer tour for Circus of Horrors
Saturday 19 July 2014
The Circus of Horrors begins the first of its summer dates next week, in Wimborne Tivoli Theatre on 21st July then Jersey Opera House on 23rd, 24th & 25th July, and Bridport on the 27th July. It will be the last time that the Circus of Horrors will perform their London After Midnight show in the UK and Channel Islands.
Set in a plague-ridden London in 1665 & climaxing at the great fire of 1666, the story twists and turns with five grisly murders, each in separate London landmarks, and all interwoven with brilliant & bizarre circus acts and the blood-curdling rock n roll of Dr Haze & the Interceptors from Hell.
For further details go to www.circusofhorrors.co.uk
From B to B - Charity ride from Blackpool Tower Circus to Budapest
Saturday 19 July 2014
Blackpool Tower Circus Director Laci Endresz Senior motorcycled 1,650 miles from Blackpool to the Budapest State Circus last month to raise funds for charity.
Dressed in circus-themed jacket and helmet, Laci made the 1650 miles journey in just twenty-two hours, plus the ferry-crossing time, on his treasured Harley Davidson. Laci’s two sons, the circus clowns Mooky and his brother Mr Boo waved him on his way as he started from the doors of the famous Blackpool Tower Circus, and he was greeted in Budapest by a film crew, poised to capture his triumphant arrival.
Laci decided on the challenge to raise funds for both Merlin’s Magic Wand, an International charitable trust that believes in putting the magic back into the childhoods of seriously ill, disabled and disadvantaged children, and for the Blackpool Rotary Club. This is a non-political, non-religious group that is open to all cultures, races, and creeds and represents a cross-section of local business and professional leaders.
Although Laci completed the ride successfully, contributions will still be gratefully received. Cheques can be sent to Philip Jackson, Treasurer, Palatine Rotary Club, 109 Cornwall Avenue, Blackpool FY2 9QS, or by bank transfer to Blackpool Palatine Rotary Trust Fund Account, Acc. No. 31330896 Sort Code: 40-12-09. Please give your name and the reference B TO B.
Circus Wonderland: 'the UK’s most magical circus!'
Saturday 05 July 2014
Circus Wonderland is in town, inviting you into a spellbinding world of colour, laughter and excitement, before disappearing into the night and leaving only a faded patch of grass and the memories that will last a lifetime.
Brought to you by Peter and Grace Arnett, and the Popolino Clowns Kriss Freear and Paul Carpenter, Circus Wonderland is proud to present a glittering array of top international artistes in a vibrant, fast moving show to enchant audiences of all ages.
There is a Close Encounter with the Duo Stefanelli, who fly high into the roof of the arena in their glittering spaceship, while Angel Bojilov can juggle and spin plates on sticks, all whilst perching precariously on a tightrope. Glitz and glamour come to the Big Top with Miss Grace Olivia’s fabulous foot juggling fiesta, and Ukrainian Circus star Armen will balance his wife Anya at the top of a twenty foot pole, which is placed on his head, in a spine tingling spectacle of poise and precision!
Our award winning clowns have twice been voted Britain’s Best Circus Comedy Act. Mixing music, magic and mayhem in their own unique brand of comedy chaos, this madcap pair will be arriving with a trunk full of tricks and will be accompanied by their lovable friend Bertie the cartoon Bear.
Look out for Circus Wonderland in a town near you! www.circuswonderland.co.uk
Zippos take pride and pleasure in Inverclyde
Saturday 05 July 2014
Zippos Circus Ringmaster Norman Barrett MBE, with Summer and her pony Sultan, took time out to pose beside the sculpture of 'Ginger' in Greenock during Zippos’ summer tour of Scotland.
‘Ginger’ is seen as representing both the rich traditions of the past, and, by giving the people and visitors of Inverclyde a sense of pride and pleasure, the promise of a bright future. Zippos’ director Martin Burton felt it was therefore very fitting that Norman – perhaps the most traditional figure of the circus world – was accompanied by Summer, who is very much a rising star in contemporary equine presentation, to visit the new Cathcart Street piazza. It was also appropriate because local schoolchildren were very much involved in the creation of ‘Ginger’ as the square’s centre-piece.
2014 is the eighth year that Scottish audiences have had the opportunity to enjoy an all-new show from 'Scotland's Favourite Circus', and this year’s tour will take-in towns and cities throughout the country. The two weeks of performances in Glasgow were especially successful this year, coming as they did just a few weeks before the opening of the Commonwealth Games. Zippos has rapidly become established as one of the City’s most popular attractions, bringing the unique blend of affordable, high-quality family entertainment that has won so many awards, including coming top in the latest vote to decide ‘Britain’s Best Classical Circus’.
Visit Zippos at www.scotlandsfavouritecircus.co.uk
Street Bikes, BMX, FMX and Extreme Drift join Extreme Stunt Show
Saturday 05 July 2014
The Extreme Stunt show continues with its latest & greatest venture, the Extreme Torque show, as it hits Edinburgh. Joining the legendary Monster Trucks are Street Bikes, BMX, FMX and the Extreme Drift series.
Continental Circus Berlin starts European tour in Edinburgh
Saturday 05 July 2014
Continental Circus Berlin has just commenced its first European tour in 5 years, starting at Edinburgh’s Ocean Terminal before moving onto Aberdeen, Stirling, Dundee & St Andrews. Promoted by the European Events Corporation Continental Circus Berlin is an amalgamation of brilliant Circus acts, music & real youthful energy, incorporating fantastic performers from all over the world.
Circus of Horrors celebrates its 19th year with online downloads
Saturday 05 July 2014
Dr Haze & The infamous Circus of Horrors are in the process of releasing all the songs and various packages from the show's 19 year history, as internet downloads for the first time. You will find them on iTunes, from the very first Album Destiny & Desire, to its latest singles Hellraiser, After Life & Heresy Files.
The Moscow State Circus is back in the UK
Saturday 05 July 2014
The Moscow State Circus returns to the UK with it’s latest production Park Gorgogo, commencing on the 9th July in Birmingham and then around the South West, Wales & culminating in London. Full tour dates are available on www.moscowstatecircus.com
Summer residency in Blackpool for Cirque du Hilarious
Saturday 05 July 2014
Cirque du Hilarious starring Clive Webb and Danny Adams is taking over Blackpool’s Central Pier for the summer. From Monday 21st will be entertaining the crowds twice a day at 1pm and 3:30pm. With one and a half hours of pure family entertainment that will blow the minds of not only the kids but the adults too, everyone is bound to have a good time.
Cirque du Hilarious will be displaying an array of slapstick humour, stunts, magic and mayhem as well as performances from the only all clown rock band in the world – clownforce! Clownforce has previously been seen performing with Elvis but unfortunately he won’t be with us this year because he is no longer touring live!
Cirque du Hilarious would not be complete without Mick Potts who will be baffling the audience with his own mind. We are still not sure exactly how he does it but we are sure you will be as confused as we are.
At the end of the summer season Clive Webb and Danny Adams will be heading up their tenth year at Newcastle Pantomine, the UK’s fastest booking panto. This year’s Snow White panto promises to be the best yet with lots of surprises in store for the Audience.
July until Sunday 31st August (excluding Fridays) Cirque du Hilarious
"Mind-blowing teaching" with the Festival Circus
Saturday 05 July 2014
The Festival Circus landed at the prestigious North Liverpool Academy on Tuesday June 24th, taught a fully-structured programme of circus skills to their 1900 students over three days, and was gone and setting-up in Hampshire on Saturday!
Gillian Snape from North Liverpool Academy said: “primary to secondary school and sixth formers had a great time… Please thank them for their versatility in the demands of a school environment - we hope to invite them back again.”
As well as being a family-favourite when performing at festivals and county shows each Summer, the Festival Circus provides circus workshops and training activities each year for schools and groups like the Scouts and GirlGuiding.
Paul Mills, Head of Drama at The Westgate School wrote:
"The achievements of our pupils were mind-blowing and this must surely be thanks to the high quality teaching. As well as teaching individual skills in a wide range of circus skills, the Festival Circus promotes core virtues of practice, team-work, initiative and personal discipline - everything, in fact, that is needed to become a successful life-long learner.
The Festival Circus surprises pupils about their own hidden talents! It provides living proof that learning is at it's best when it is serious fun!"
Circus school graduates win at Monte Carlo Festival
Saturday 05 July 2014
Academy of Circus Arts (ACA) alumni Blaze Birge and David Jones won an award for their doubles trapeze routine at the 2014 Monte Carlo Circus Festival, the first ACA graduates to appear at this prestigious annual event.
Blaze and David – the Daring Jones Duo – each trained with the Academy, in 2000 and in 2003, respectively. Since then they have established their own circus company, the Flynn Creek Circus, in their native California and performed in the USA, Europe and Asia. The couple returned to England from 2009 until 2012 to be the Academy’s managers and head of training.
The Academy of Circus Arts is Europe’s only travelling circus school. Students leave home to live and travel with the circus and the Big Top that is its classroom, and to perform at events like county shows, or provide educational activities for schools, Scouts and Girlguiding. Alongside the performance and skills training, students learn how to teach basic circus and are coached in related aspects ranging from health and safety to make-up.
Now in its 22nd year, the Academy has trained more than 150 young people.
Several graduates appeared in the aerial performances at the Millennium Dome, others have progressed to teaching circus skills, and three graduates have created and successfully toured their own traveling circuses.