From the Ground Up

From the Ground Up
Circus Oz. Canberra Theatre 3–7 October and touring N.S.W. till 1 November 2012 and the U.S. from November 2012 till March 2013

Blend the magic of circus, the surprise of stage magic, and a little stylish hip-hop; add juggling acts and a touch of satire; overlay it all with live jazzy original music and uproarious sound effects; and you may get some idea of the fun in Circus Oz's latest show. What From the Ground Up offers is an almost seamless series of shows of physical cleverness that inspires and delights, all with flair, in an air of barely controlled chaos. It's a hoot.

With never more than around 15 people on stage at once, the dexterity of role changes made the company seem far larger. Twelve musicians followed four jugglers exchanging batons in original and entertaining patterns and eight acrobats depending for their safety on a single bicycle tyre.  So busy was it that occasionally you could be distracted from the main event.


Chock full of surprises, riddled with jokes, and solidly founded on consummately coordinated acrobatics and gymnastics, this show's two hours is constant entertainment for all, and I was pleased to see that a good number of children as young as three were as thoroughly diverted as were the adults.  This is circus as it would be in a humane world, appealing to our better selves and without recourse to imprisonment of animals of other species for our amusement.


John P. Harvey

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