Review: Circus Oz at the New Victory (Nov 30-Dec 30, NY)

Circus Oz is one of the finest circuses on the planet.   They started in Melbourne, Australia in 1978, and since then have toured nationally and internationally , taking their self-crafted performances of wit, grace and spectacle to 26 countries across five continents, to critical acclaim. The Circus Oz show is a rock-n-roll, animal free circus that adults and children can enjoy together. A typical show features two hours of breathtaking agility, death-defying stunts, awe-inspiring acrobatic performances, irreverent comedy and a spectacular live band.

I’ve written about Circus Oz previously .  Last year, they came to the McCarter Theater in Princeton, and we had free tickets to offer  you, which was a great deal.  This year, we don’t have free tickets, but seeing Circus Oz is still highly recommended.   They’ve come to the New Victory 4 or 5 times over the last 12 years, and they always put on a great show. (And I don’t think I’ve missed one either!)

The current show at the New Victory Theatre in New York through December 30, is no different.  The 12 or so performers are all highly skilled, and might play a musical instrument one minute, and then do a trapeze act or a clown routine the next minute. They rollerskate, juggle, play instruments, fly through the air, and do all other kinds of cool things.

The title of the show is “From the Ground Up” and it’s got a theme of construction.  It’s got a rich field to offer these talented clowns and acrobats, and they make the most of it.  They’ve got a couple of spectacular acts, including a rarely seen swaypole, some death defying antics on a climbing pole, and a great trapeze act that is up close and personal.

What I love about the trapeze act is that the catcher is close enough to the swinging trapeze that the flyer can actually hold the catcher and the trapeze at the same time. (See picture above)

Some of the performers are the same as last year. All the performers are great, but of special interest is the MC/Ringmaster Ghenoa Gela, who is a first time Circus Oz performer, and part of the community of indigineous peoples of Australia.  She is really wonderful, has a kind of sparkle as a performer.

The show is clearly not an American show– just before the intermission, the MC says “It’s almost the interval, 12 minutes long, and you know what that means, “Smoke-o’s!”   Another performer does a spectacular fall on roller skates, picks herself up and adjusts the crotch of her costume, talking about her cameltoe.  (and if you don’t know what that means, don’t worry, your kids don’t either!– unless they are 15+, in which case it doesn’t matter)  My point being that this circus is a little rock-n-roll, and not whitewashed for kids–it’s the real deal. I don’t want to say it’s an adult circus, because that gives all the wrong connotations, but it’s a circus that adults will love too!

Circus Oz will be touring throughout the states from now through March of 2013.  Here’s where you can catch them!

New Victory Theatre, NYC – November 30-December 30 2012
Tacoma, WA – February 1-2, 2013
Los Angeles, CA – February 7-10 2013
Berkeley, CA – February 15-17, 2013
Las Vegas, NV – February 21-23, 2013
Cedar Falls, IA – February 26-27 2013
West Lafayette, IN – March 3, 2013
Urbana, IL – March 8-9, 2013

Here’s a video

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