Barely Contained – Festival

Barely Contained Circus Oz Festival 2010Reviewed Saturday February 27th 2010 (continues until March 14th)

Presented by Circus Oz

Venue: Torrens Parade Ground, cnr King William Road & Victoria Drive, Adelaide
Season: 24-26 February at 7.30pm, 27 February at 1.30pm & 7.30pm, 28 February 6.00pm, 3-5 March at 7.30pm, 6 March at 1.30pm & 7.30pm, 7 March at 12.30 & 6.00pm, 10-12 March at 7.30pm, 13 March at 1.30pm & 7.30pm, 14 March at 12.30 & 6.00pm
Tickets: $33-$72 (plus booking fees) available through BASS
Bookings: BASS 131 246 or

Circus Oz distinguishes itself from most other acts of this ilk not only by the size of its ensemble, but by providing a visual feast to keep you energized. While most circus shows clear the stage for the featured act, this troupe ensures there’s something to watch in all directions, not just the main attraction.

From the band on stage, to fellow artists dancing on the sides, the troupe keeps your eyes wandering and your smile broadening.

There’s comedy galore for the whole family, beginning with prim Event Coordinator Tiffany, delightfully played by Eli Green. Between emceeing the daredevil stunts and impressive acrobatics, Tiffany is getting married, causing mayhem galore.

The acts themselves are breathtaking, but none more so than the Chair Balancing, which required absolute precision. Flip Kammerer’s inline skating uses slapstick to great effect, while strongwoman Mel Fyfe and pint sized Emma J Hawkins are a superb couple of modern day clowns. Even Laurel Frank’s costumes illicit their own laughs at times, in particular the red kangaroos.

Other acts include teeterboard acrobatics, plate spinning, hoop diving, trapeze, hula hoops and aerial straps, all underscored by Carl Polke’s lively instrumentations and songs. It is finely paced, segueing between pandemonium and restraint.

Co-directors Mike Finch and Derek Ives, and Musical Director Chris Lewis have filled the big top with sights and sounds to make the kids squeal, the adults gasp, and everyone laugh out loud.

Review by Rod Lewis, Glam Adelaide Arts Critic.

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