News and Work in Progress

Tilt Teaching and Performing
Tue, Aug 8th, 2017

Tilt Teaching and PerformingI was back at Tilt Festival for Rogue Play Theatre this year. Tilt is an aerial festival in Birmingham, and this year my main role was as teaching assistant for Kim Charnock, who was 8 months pregnant, and although still able to teach aerial, she wasn't able to demonstrate everything. So that was my job, I saw myself as a kind of body double! As well as helping Kim with her 3 classes a day, I also performed Taking Flight on the Saturday daytime, and performed my work in progress piece Trapped in the scratch night. It is really valuable t be able to show pieces in the early stages of their development. It helps you get a feel for your material in front of an audience and to try out new ideas and different approaches, as well as the opportunity to gain feedback from the audience. By the end of the week I was pretty exhausted to be honest, but had no time to rest, as I was hopping on a train to go to an aerial festival in France. Summer is no time for resting!
2017-08-08 21:49:00


Nigeria!
Thu, Jul 6th, 2017

Nigeria!It's not every day you get an enquiry to go to Nigeria, and a lot of these foreign jobs don't end up happening. This one was so last minute, that I didn't even get excited until my flights were confirmed! I was a part of a team of 4 aerialists and 4 Brazilian dancers who flew out to Lagos on June 24th, not quite sure what to expect! Well, it was hot, and as it is the rainy season, very humid. We were working for Remi Martin, who were putting on big club nights in the 2 main cities- Lagos and Abuja. So, bleary-eyed after an overnight flight, we went to check out the first venue, a marquee in the grounds of the very grand Federal Palace Hotel. The inside was plush and well on it's way to being ready for the event. After a few rigging hitches, we got set up and got through our rehearsals. Show 1 done, then made our way to Abuja. The venue wasn't ready so we had a little time to explore. The nights were great, big shows put on by the Nigerian dancers, Brazilian dancers and us, all choreographed by a man named Fabulous (he was!) The main attraction was of course the all-star DJ's, including Phyno (billed as Africa's no. 1 Dj) and Runtown. Some of them made high speed getaways at the end of the night to avoid being mobbed by their fans! After the shows we got to hang out and relax by enjoying a few glasses of Remi. It was a great experience, we were very well looked after, and it was such a privilege to see even a little of Nigeria, I would definitely go back, especially as they have the most beautiful lizards I have ever seen.
2017-07-06 21:03:00


Taking Flight- Rogue Play Theatre
Thu, Jul 6th, 2017

Taking Flight- Rogue Play TheatreOne of my many pleasures this year has been working on Taking Flight with Rogue Play Theatre. Even the audition for the part was fun, so when I was asked to be one of the 3 performers I was more than happy to accept. In creating the show we spent a lot of time improvising around the themes and characters for the show, these days improvising is one of my favourite things, especially improvising in the air. As it is an outdoor show we have also spent a lovely couple of weeks rehearsing on a farm in the rural idyll of Worcestershire, which as the sun was shining felt like a real treat. The show is a narrative based aerial theatre performance designed with visually impaired audiences in mind. There is a poetic audio description integrated into the original soundtrack, as well as a touch tour of the set and workshops for all abilities. It also features visually impaired aerialist and actor Karina Jones. We performed our first shows in June at Summer in Southside Festival, Birmingham, and we are on tour from now until the end of august. Next performances are at Liberty Festival, London, Tilt Festival and MAC, Birmingham and then going for 10 days to the Edinburgh Fringe. So you have plenty of opportunity to see the show!
2017-07-06 20:46:00


Armadale Castle, Isle of Skye
Tue, Jun 6th, 2017

Armadale Castle, Isle of SkyeMay bank holiday weekend saw me doing the long haul north again, all the way to the Isle of Skye! The 11 hour journey is definitely worth it, it just feel like it on hours 9 and 10! This time I travelled up to perform in the beautiful setting of Armadale Castle, which stands in ruins on overlooking the shore and views over to Mallaig on the mainland. The show was a four hander, and as we were rigged from a tree, we were all birds. I was a phoenix on my rope, and loved playing with bird like movement in the air, finding ways to fly, soar dive and hover over the crowd.
2017-06-06 18:17:00


Circus 62
Tue, Jun 6th, 2017

Circus 62March was a surprisingly busy month. As well as some corporate aerial performances, doing duo silks, web spin and a fire show, I was part of a small team that organised a circus networking event for this region. Circus 62 was an event designed to get everyone involved in circs in this region together to meet each other, talk about current and local issues, and watch some new pieces of work. It was a collaboration between The Barnsley Civic Theatre, Pif-Paf and Victoria Works. The day was fab, a good number of people came, we discussed topics ranging from Circus 250, Youth circus, directing for circus to insurance, dance in circus and funding. As well as eating delicious food from The Bhaji Shop, in the evening we hosted the Civic Circus Scratch night, where 5 pieces of new circus were performed and critical feedback given. I was lucky enough to be one of the performers selected, and I showed the first draft of my piece Trapped- An aerial theatre piece that explores issues in our lives and ways in which we limit our own possibilities. I received good and useful feedback from the audience, and have now applied for funding to develop the piece, fingers crossed!
2017-06-06 17:59:00


Skye
Mon, May 8th, 2017

SkyeI have been lucky enough to go to have been invited to don some teaching up on the Isle of Skye this year. My first trip was back in January and I am going again at the end of this week. There is a small committed aerial community up there and I was really impressed by their resilience and self reliance. By the end of the 2 days we had covered a lot of ground and they were I think, somewhat exhausted! I'm looking forward to checking on their progress and of course, enjoying the stunning views on my next trip.
2017-05-08 22:31:00


Cirque Du Tropic and The Childine Ball
Fri, Mar 31st, 2017

Cirque Du Tropic and The Childine BallMarch was surprisingly busy for corporate events this year. 2 in particular stood out- Cirque Du Tropic and The Childline Ball. Both in Manchester, one at The Hilton in Deansgate and for Circue Du Tropic we had the honour of performing on Moscow State Circus' Big Top! It was a little daunting, but as soon as we started rehearsals for the show Somnabu with Area 51 my fears dissolved. The show was in 2 parts, the first a beautiful, lyrical style with live singing, where we showcased our silks duo. The second half was more tribal, high energy featuring the Area 51 Tikki fire show and the Black Eagles, we closed the show with a web-spin and a pyro-technic finale. The Childline Ball was a more conventional corporate gig, with a patriotic "Cool Britannia" theme. As my usual aerial partner was on holiday, I enlisted the help of local aerialist and fire performer Jess Abouzeid. It was the first time we had worked together, so required some extra rehearsals. The gig went really well and I will definitely work with Jess again, the client was very pleased with our silks duo and fire show, and we got some lovely pictures from the event.
2017-03-06 23:35:00


Party Like Gatsby
Sat, Jan 7th, 2017

Party Like GatsbySpeakeasy and The Great Gatsby are a popular theme for events theses days. I can see why too, the emphasis on entertainment, good music, the strong visual image that means people can dress up in a glamorous way and of course that underground feeling of identifying with something that was once illegal. We love dressing up in the style of bygone era's. So we did a series of events called Party Like Gatsby, an event that has been touring Europe with sell-out success and I can see why. All of these were well organised, really fun events, packed with characters and loads of great entertainment. Which is of course, where we came in. We provided meet and greet entertainment, stage show acts and for the grand finale- a fire show. We had so much fun performing our silks duo, right in the middle of the crowd (all the venues were packed) we started on the stage, and the compare parted the crowd like the red sea for us, we were carried on the shoulders of a couple of gangsters to the foot of our silks, and performed with the crowd all around us, the energy was amazing, and the crowd were excited to have us performing amongst and above them. When we came down, our gangster friends carried us back to the stage, with the audience high-fiving us on the way, what a buzz! When fire show time came, a little later, the crown were having a great time, and myself, the Fireman Dave and Micky Bimble strutted our stuff on stage with clubs, fire fans, staffs and a fire hula hoop. In all, the events were a great experience, we worked with the lovely crew from The Invisible circus, and the organisers looked after us really well. I hope to do more of these in the future.
2017-01-07 11:46:00


Wired Aerial Theatre- Liverpool Christmas Lights Switch On
Sat, Dec 24th, 2016

Wired Aerial Theatre- Liverpool Christmas Lights Switch OnChristmas is a big deal in Liverpool City Centre. This year was the biggest Christmas Lights switch on show yet. We performed cocoon on 3 specially commissioned aerial rigs designed by Wired Aerial Theatre. We were at first graceful Christmas angels that rose from the ground, after shining our angelic light into the sky we descended and transformed ourselves into cheeky elves, that climbed again to see Santa safely in as he landed his sleigh on the roof of John Lewis. Thousands of people came to watch, an we had a great time!
Christmas is a big deal in Liverpool City Centre. This year was the biggest Christmas Lights switch on show yet. We performed cocoon on 3 specially commissioned aerial rigs designed by Wired Aerial Theatre. We were at first graceful Christmas angels that


Vertifarm Circus at Festival of the Mind
Thu, Dec 22nd, 2016

Vertifarm Circus at Festival of the MindSheffield Winter Gardens were a beautiful and very relevant backdrop to a show we did this autumn. As a part of Festival of the Mind, we were commissioned to create a show to draw attention to and celebrate a high tech gardening project and crowd funding campaign from Sheffield University. It is all about Aquaponics and vertical gardening, it was quite an unusual and challenging commission for us, but we got our thinking caps on and came up with a cheeky and fun aerial show. With liberal use of gardening tools, fruit and vegetables our show was a mix of ensemble, duo and solo acts, including a passionate aerial tango on a rope with a garden rake, aerial hoop apple picking, plant pot hand-balancing and of course an aerial silk plant-charming act! We had loads of fun, nice friendly audiences, and hopefully attracted a lot of attention to the aquaponics project. It was lovely doing a public aerial performance in Sheffield city centre as lots of our friends had the opportunity to come and watch.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4UKwLECcuIE


Tarzana- Aerial Theatre Show
Tue, Nov 22nd, 2016

Tarzana- Aerial Theatre ShowThis autumn I had the pleasure of working on a Children's aerial theatre show with The Gramophones- a theatre company based in Nottingham. Although one of their company is an aerialist, this was their first aerial theatre show. The show was commissioned by Derby Feste- a street and performance festival that attracts international performances as well as large crowds of spectators. Creating the show was a hugely enjoyable experience and the Gramophones are great to work with. I got to be a monkey, a sloth and a jazz hyena as well as a more conventional human character! Creating an outdoor show always has it's own challenges but we were actually very lucky with the weather! The shows went well and we had good, big crowds on the day. Looking forward to the planned tour next year!
gramophonestheatre.com


Halloween and Bonfire Night
Tue, Nov 22nd, 2016

Halloween and Bonfire NightHad a really spooky Halloween at Bolsover Castle. Along with a whole host of scaries I was doing a voodoo fire performance. The castle made for a really atmospheric venue and there were crowds of dressed up children ready for a fright. One of the things I really enjoyed was appearing out of the complete darkness of the grounds and getting to do fire with no ambient light, which is where it looks at its most spectacular.
http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/bolsover-castle/


A Very Busy Summer
Wed, Sep 28th, 2016

A Very Busy SummerIt's September!! I don't really know how that happened, although the weather is still quite warm, so maybe I can fool myself that the summer isn't technically over. I've had a lovely and very busy summer with some really great shows and work opportunities. It kicked off in June with my second visit to Fusion festival in Germany with Bassline Circus. We created the show "Athletes of the Night" and performed it over 4 days to capacity crowds. It's an urban gang battle themed show with comedy twists, plenty of theatrics and oodles of high skill circus acts. I was on the rigging team as well as performing corde lisse in the show. From there we went back into rehearsals for Ashes with Paper Doll Militia and then to Tilt Festival in Birmingham. Tilt is a new aerial festival run by Rogue Play, and was a week of workshops and performances. So as well as performing Ashes there, I also taught workshops in aerial hoop and static trapeze all week. The participants worked really and were brilliant, and I had an especially good time teaching my advanced static trapeze class. From there it was back to Sheffield for a week that included rehearsals for my new counterweighted rope act, a trip to Putney Car Free Day with our environmental stilt walkabout- Air Quality Control, and a full rigging inspection at Greentop Circus centre. Then it was back with Bassline Circus for Boomtown Fair, where I was rigging for Athletes of the Night, this time a full outdoor show with Zip lines over the crowd. Boomtown was a lot of fun, the shows went really well and the sun shone for nearly the whole festival! After that I returned home to start work on a new show for September- Tarzana with the Gramophones theatre company, and their first venture into aerial theatre show, but more about that later. At the same time myself and Alex Anderson were working on our Counterweighted rope ready for Shambala Festival. We were in the Fallen Legends Cabaret in the Playhouse Theatre, run by Sideways Arts, the theme was dead rock stars, so I naturally, was Janis Joplin, speaking to the crowd at a festival and then performing the rope act to Piece of My Heart. The whole cabaret was brilliant, and it was especially satisfying to perform a completely new act (dynamic counterweighted rope) to such a great audience, they were so good they even invaded the stage at the end of the show and danced on it. I loved being Janis Joplin!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esps4eFbpic


The Circus House, Manchester
Thu, Mar 10th, 2016

The Circus House, ManchesterI was delighted this week to be invited over to the circus house to teach for 3 days. The Circus House is a space in Manchester that provides training and classes in all kinds of circus skills for children and adults alike and has a great community programme. They started with very little and have built themselves up to a thriving company with great ambitions. They have recently received funding from ACE to upskill their in house tutors so those skills can be passed back into the community, and I was brought in, amongst other tutors to teach them. We had a good 3 days of intensive training and they are great, dedicated students. If you are near Manchester and want to learn circus, I can't recommend them enough.
http://www.thecircushouse.co.uk/


Loops End Tour
Thu, Mar 10th, 2016

Loops End TourJust back from an invigorating tour of Loops End with Paper Doll Militia. We had a fine time, performing in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Musselburgh, Cumbernauld, St Andrews and a week at Vault Festival in London. The shows were really well received and it was a great performance experience.


Loops End, Paper Doll Militia
Wed, Feb 3rd, 2016

Loops End, Paper Doll MilitiaRecently I've been working on a show with Aerial Theatre company Paper Doll Militia. Based both in the US and Edinburgh, the company make beautiful visual physical theatre performances. We have just had the opening night of our tour at Manipulate Festival, Edinburgh with Loops End. Loops end is a triple bill of Unchained, Ashes and Unhinged XY. I'm in Ashes as well as being the aerial rigger for the tour, and we have been working with director Al Seed on the piece. Here's a review of our opening night..
http://www.edinburghguide.com/reviews/manipulatefestival/loopsendmanipulatefestivalreview-16502


Out Of This World Fire Show
Wed, Feb 3rd, 2016

Out Of This World Fire ShowNovember 5th 2015 saw us returning to Oldham as the fire company Firenzy for their bonfire night celebrations. It is a great endorsement to be asked back to such a high profile gig, The Oldham Big Bang is attended by around 15000 people. Despite awful weather this year we set up for the show, the theme was Out Of This World. We created a firey ethereal space odyssey, with rocket launch, planet landing, space walk, comets and of course plenty of fire. Fire clubs, fire poi, fire hula hoops, fire staff with a big pyrotechnic finale. The crowds showed up and the rain let up, and so we went Out Of This World.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s_TuQJO4qzw


Desperately seekng Ruskin
Tue, Dec 8th, 2015

Desperately seekng RuskinOne of the great pleasures of this autumn was, not only having 2 outdoor aerial shows in warm delicious sunshine at the end of September, but devising and performing Desperately Seeking Ruskin as part of the Ruskin festival. As a part of Cabaret Boom Boom we were commissioned to create a site specific promenade performance based on the influence of John Ruskin in Walkley and the curious curators of the St Georges Museum. It was a great challenge to research, devise and perform, but I thoroughly enjoyed creating my character Nora Wright, who was loosely based on a genuine visitor to the museum. I also greatly enjoyed the finale of the show where I performed rope, as Nora to live accordion music in the community garden on Freedom road. It definitely was one of my favourite shows this year.


Mucho Brumcha- Mexican Day of the Dead
Mon, Oct 5th, 2015

Mucho Brumcha- Mexican Day of the DeadThe glorious sunshine of the last weekend in September was a blessing for us, as we were performing outside in Birmingham. We were at Mucho Brumcha a Mexican Day of the Dead event. We put up our aerial rig in the early morning, set up our Offerendas on our little shine and got on with the show. We got great crowds and performed 2 different shows. All painted with sugar skull faces, we had Mr Herbert as our compare and collector of Mexican performers, Juanita the ghostly doll on trapeze, naughty skeletons on silks, La Brucha- the Mexican witch, a ghostly aerial hoop and a crazy professor who buried himself alive on a rope.
http://eyecandyfest.tumblr.com/post/128192241147/mucho-brumcha-26-27-september-in-birmingham


Meadowhall 25th Birthday Celebrations
Fri, Sep 25th, 2015

Meadowhall 25th Birthday CelebrationsMeadowhall shopping centre, Sheffield celebrated it's 25th birthday this September. They wanted to create a big splash, so we were part of a whole host of entertainment over the weekend. We were in their main show and performed our silks duo above a team of feather clad dancers. The whole show had an upbeat, celebratory feel, and it was beautiful to perform in the main dome, with its glass roof, loads of height and sunlight sparkling through.
https://www.facebook.com/search/str/meadowhall%2025th%20birthday


Balby-by-the Sea
Tue, Sep 8th, 2015

Balby-by-the SeaThe middle of August was lovely and sunny, and it's important that those land locked communities don't miss out on the beach action! So we went to Balby-by-the Sea to perform our Sea themed aerial cabarets. 3 aerial artists an accordionist and a compare. The shows went really well and were well received, we had a drunken sailor on lookout on a rope, some underwater scuba diving silks artists, and strange creature hauled out of the sea and onto an aerial hoop and a day dreaming beach-comber on a rope. The day was loads of fun, have a look at our video, link below.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0f3lk6ZNtkE


Air Quality Control Stilt Walkabout
Mon, Aug 3rd, 2015

Air Quality Control Stilt WalkaboutSunday August 2nd saw us in Putney for their Car Free Day. It was lovely to revive our Air Quality Control stilt walkabout characters, they are a lot of fun to perform and definitely catch the public's eye. They are a pair of crazy cloud covered pseudo scientists, a comedy walkabout with a serious message. They monitor the quality of the air, conduct experiments and try to suggest environmental improvements. They are perfect for green fairs and environmental events, just like Putney's Car Free Day on Sunday. It was a lovely sunny day, someone obviously approves of our environmental message!
https://www.wandsworth.gov.uk/events/start/02-08-2015/end/02-08-2015


Big Top Aerial Gigs
Sun, Jul 19th, 2015

Big Top Aerial GigsI've been lucky enough to join Swamp Circus for a couple of shows in their Big Top recently. I love performing in Big Tops! They are, unsurprisingly great places to perform aerial in, you have loads of height and space and a lovely atmosphere. When I first started out in my aerial career I toured in a lot of big top shows and still feel a little nostalgic abut them. I did my trapeze and silks acts in the show, which was compared by the inimitable Big Grey, and included acrobats, rope acts, jugglers, clowns and limbo.


Barcelona, Italy and Cityscapes Dance performance
Fri, Jun 26th, 2015

Barcelona, Italy and Cityscapes Dance performanceI haven't put up much news lately, but that doesn't mean I haven't been up to much! I recently went to Barcelona to train with some of the best rope performers in the world, which was inspiring, rewarding and very hard work! After that I headed to Bocca di Magra in Italy for a week's physical theatre workshop, taught by the indomitable Sergei Ostrenko. The workshop was brilliant with lots of food for thought, attended by performers from all over the world, and the setting was beautiful. Since being back in Sheffield I've been doing the usual rounds of training, rehearsing, performing and rigging. One project that stood out was Cityscapes with The Dance Network Sheffield. A site specific dance performance that travelled through Sheffield City centre, choreographed by Gerry Turvey. It was a lovely opportunity to dance, explore and do unusual things in my home city. Towards the end of the performance I had the joy of getting in the Fountain by the train station! We will be performing it again at Tramlines festival on July 27th.
http://www.sheffielddesignweek.co.uk/event/cityscapes-dance-network-sheffield/


Training in the Sun
Wed, May 27th, 2015

Training in the SunI'm getting ready for the summer season to kick off by being a little self indulgent and having some time at La Central Del Circ in Barcelona. Training with some of the best rope artists in the world, working hard and really evaluating my skills. Having a great time, the training space at La Central is amazing, well thought out and great to use. The skill level of the artists there is really high, they are inspiring to watch. I feel like I'll come back skilled up and ready for a summer full of great performances, watch this space.


Birdy, on tour
Wed, Feb 18th, 2015

Birdy, on tourIn the usually dull days of January I've been working on an exciting project, so instead of training hard and putting in proposals for shows, I've been busy devising, rehearsing and performing. Birdy is a circus theatre production based on the novel by William Wharton, it has been adapted by the company Osborne and What into a full stage production. My role is as a performer and rigger, as the show has a lot of flying and aerial. It's challenging for me as I play 4 minor characters and performing, for me at least has a different mentality to rigging. It's good that I like a challenge. It's not the happiest of tales, but the stage adaptation has some lovely humorous moments and is well played by the cast. We're on tour until March 1st, with Great Yarmouth, Sheffield and Canterbury behind us, we have Llanelli, Brecon, Jacksons Lane (London) and Worthing to go. It's been immensely enjoyable although a bit stressful at times so far! The rest of the cast and crew, made up of actors and circus performers are great to work with, and I'll be sad when we are done.
http://osborneandwhat.tumblr.com/


BBC North East Sports Awards
Wed, Feb 4th, 2015

BBC North East Sports AwardsLate November saw myself(Madam Mango)and Laura Cork heading to Billingham Forum Theatre to perform our duo silks act. It wasn't the first time I'd performed at the theatre, and it was nice to be remembered by the team there, apparently not everyone climbs into the roof to rig their aerial equipment! That was a few years back when I was touring with Steve Steinman's Carnival Du Vampires Rock, a romp through rock classics, with a vampire narrative, lots of fake blood and of course some stunning aerial acts! The sports awards were a different sort of show however and we opened the ceremony with our silks act. We then got to relax in the bar and watch the rest of the show, which was lovely. It was nice to see some stilt walking friends also performing there. The show is still available to watch by clicking the link below.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/2pK1Htmsrd35xWHpCZnP9qJ/the-bbc-north-east-sports-awards-2014


Voodoo Fire Show for Bonfire Night
Tue, Nov 11th, 2014

Voodoo Fire Show for Bonfire NightRemember remember the 5th of November! We celebrated this bonfire night in Oldham in front of 15000 people! It was the premier of our Voodoo Fire Show, a 4 person fire spectacular. A tour de force of fire skills, including fire clubs, fire poi, giant balls of fire, fire fans, fire staffs, fire hula hoop, fire ropes and a pyro finale. It went down very well, and a good time was had by all!
http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/in-your-area/pictures-bonfire-night-oldham-edge-8060270


Chatsworth House
Tue, Nov 11th, 2014

Chatsworth HouseI returned to Chatsworth House for their bonfire night celebrations this year, I've done it more years than I can remember now! although aerial performances were a new addition last year. This year I performed with Urban Angels on their beautiful curved aerial rig. We performed Humansect, a circus theatre show to capacity audiences, and survived despite the weather! This image is from the preview at Left Bank, Leeds.


Shambala and Boomtown Festivals
Mon, Sep 29th, 2014

Shambala and Boomtown FestivalsI had a great summer of festivals this year, lovely times working with great crew of people and having a lovely time. I worked with Bassline Circus at Boomtown fair at the beginning of August despite the severe weather warnings the festival passed relatively peacefully. We put on a great aerial and stage show with solo rope, ensemble hoop, web spin, cloudswing, straps, hand balancing, harness and cyr wheel acts. I also did the rigging. Shambala festival is my favourite of the summer and it always feels like the end of the season for me too. It's small enough not to be overwhelming and full of amazing and quirky venues. performances and characters. This year I was the aerial rigger in the Playhouse Theatre tent and performing a rope act in the Social Club cabaret. I decided to go all out and perform my Buried Alive act, a cautionary tale about a fairly off the wall character, who decides to experiment with burying himself alive, the act is full of contrast and madness, slow and sinister and then fast and frantic.
https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Social-Club-Circus-Cabaret/165720083498669?sk=photos_stream


Fusion Festival Germany
Tue, Sep 16th, 2014

Fusion Festival GermanyThis year I had the pleasure of rigging and performing at Fusion Festival in Rostock, Germany. I was part of a team that went over from Bassline Circus, who created an aerial and stage show for one of the largest venues at the festival. It was a great experience seeing such a well run and well thought out festival, and of course it's always exciting to go to a different country, it has more of a feel of adventure to it! We spent a week working with choreographer Catrin Osborne creating the show as the green field we were in gradually filled up with people, venues and festival paraphernalia. We then performed for 3 nights to capacity audiences. As well as being on the rigging team I also performed in rope ensemble act.


Insect Circus in Sheffield
Sun, May 25th, 2014

Insect Circus in SheffieldOver the scorching days of last weekend 16-18th May 2014 I was performing with The Insect Circus when they came to Sheffield for the first time. The show was a sell out success with it's combination of dazzling circus skill and quirky insect based acts. It certainly is unique, and I can honestly say I have never been in a show quite like it! As well as performing my corde lisse act as Madam Mouche- an illustrious fly trainer from Paris, I also got to be a number of performing insects. The show is humorous and entertaining, and will be performed at a number of venues across the country. Thanks to Ian Spooner for the photo.
http://www.insectcircus.co.uk/index.php


Sparkle Awards and 100 Days of Culture
Wed, Apr 2nd, 2014

Sparkle Awards and 100 Days of CultureMarch has had it's share of aerial gigs, which is good as it can be a quiet time of year. My usual aerial partner is away on holiday so I've been working with another Sheffield aerial performer. We had lovely time at the Virgin Media Sparkle Awards, where they had an upbeat Vegas style show complete with handbalancers, showgirls, confetti cannons and of course our silks duo. The audience were amazing, which makes all the difference, we left feeling like it was a job well done. The following week we were in a completely different setting, at the beautiful and very dramatic Ripon Cathedral. The event was a dinner to celebrate the beginning of the 100 Days of Culture leading up to the Tour de France coming to Yorkshire. The venue looked stunning, and the audience really enjoyed our performance.


Brownies 100th birthday celebration
Mon, Feb 10th, 2014

Brownies 100th birthday celebrationIn the darkest days of January, which are normally more full of teaching aerial and training, I had a lovely gig. I was in Macclesfield helping the Brownies to celebrate their 100th birthday. Along with some fellow performers we performed an hour and a half circus show, in which I performed bespoke silks, hula hoop and rope acts. There were 1000 very appreciative brownies in the audience, and it was a n absolute pleasure to be on stage.


Bodies In Urban Spaces
Mon, Oct 7th, 2013

Bodies In Urban SpacesI had great fun last week being one of 19 performers in Bodies In Urban Spaces in Bangor. It is a promenade performance of body sculptures within architectural features. You'll get a better idea by having a look at the photo's and footage. It was a really interesting experience, and the feedback from the audience was fantastic.
http://https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.427340190711017.1073741872.198966906881681&type=1


New silks duo video
Fri, Sep 20th, 2013

New silks duo videoHere is a video of our new silks duo, created earlier this year for a corporate circus themed event. This video is of the second performance also at a local corporate event. The entertainment included a fire show, jugglers, acrobats, stilt walkers, and of course our aerial silks act.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYApwppbHd4


Performing on the Port Stage at Bestival
Fri, Sep 20th, 2013

Performing on the Port Stage at BestivalI had the pleasure of performing aerial at Bestival for the first time this year. As part of a team of around 40 circus performers, we animated the Port Stage day and night. The stage was amazing, it really did look like a ship! It was lovely to be there at the last big festival of the season, working my corde lisse, silks and aerial hoop in front of massive crowds.


Madam Mango at Sandwich Circus
Mon, Sep 2nd, 2013

Madam Mango at Sandwich CircusI recently had the pleasure of performing in the Sheffield Winter Gardens, it is a truly fabulous setting for aerial acts. I performed Cascade my corde lisse solo to a packed audience early on. Then busied myself with a transformation into Doris the Tea Lady for our comedy aerial silks duo. It was the first time Laura and I appeared as The Tea Ladies, and it was so well received that I hope I get the opportunity to show perform this act again. A lovely days' performing.


Madam Mango performs at Irish Aerial Dance Festival
Fri, Jun 21st, 2013

Madam Mango performs at Irish Aerial Dance FestivalI had a fabulous week in Letterkenny at the Irish Aerial Dance Festival. Doing four workshops a day was pretty gruelling but loads of fun and I learnt a lot, my days were made up of an hour and a half class of each of the following: Corde Lisse (rope), Silks, Harness techniques and Act refinement. The teachers were all fabulous, and the other participants lovely. I felt like I made a lot of new friends. On the Saturday night I performed my new rope act in the cabaret and had lots of positive feedback. I have recently filmed this act and it will be up on youtube soon.


Oldham Festival Aerial Performances
Thu, May 30th, 2013

Oldham Festival Aerial PerformancesSaturday 25th May saw a team of 3 of us heading to Oldham to perform at their festival. It was a beautiful sunny day and there was a whole host of entertainment walkabout and shows. We were performing an aerial cabaret on a free standing aerial rig and our shows had a gardening theme. We were dressed in flowers. I performed static trapeze and corde lisse and we had a lovely day with enthusiastic crowds. It's lovely to be able to perform outside on the street.


Awards Dinner in Doncaster sees premier of Stilt Ringmistress
Wed, Apr 10th, 2013

Awards Dinner in Doncaster sees premier of Stilt RingmistressWe provided a whole gamut of entertainment for a circus themed, corporate awards ceremony at The Doncaster Dome. As teh guests arrived they were greeted by a pair of stilt walkers, including my brand new Stilt Ringmistress. They were also entertained by a roving unicyclist and a fire juggler. Once they were inside they were entertained by a juggler, hula hooper, and an aerial hoop performance. Then for the grand finale, our brand new and very spectacular aerial silks duet. The client said it really provided the wow factor they were looking for. A great success.


Madam Mango Corde Lisse Workshop in Nottingham
Fri, Mar 22nd, 2013

Madam Mango Corde Lisse Workshop in NottinghamOn Sunday 24th March I will be teaching a corde lisse workshop in Nottingham for Tuyo Circus Arts. I'm really looking forward to putting them through their paces and teaching new moves and techniques. Tuyo Circus Arts have been working hard over the last few years to build up the circus, aerial and acrobatic scene in Nottingham, which is now going strong


Teaching Aerial on the Circus In Performance Course
Wed, Feb 13th, 2013

I am teaching as usual on The Circus In Perfromance Course. This is a 12 week foundation level circus course. The students learn aerial, equilibristics, manipulation, clowning, performance, acrobatics, and dance. The students have settled in well and are very keen. I really enjoy teaching all the skills, its lovely to see their skills develop. They are working towards their week 6 assessments, and then the end of course show.


Christmas entertainment video
Mon, Jan 21st, 2013

Christmas entertainment videoWith all that christmas work behind me, and only my tax return to think about, here is a little distraction! A showreel made up of footage from our christmas work 2012. It shows some of what we can provide in terms of entertainment, aerial, silks, hoop, rope, doubles rope, web spins and fire. Enjoy!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y3dpg9Tcv-Q


Christmas Entertainment in Sheffield
Fri, Dec 7th, 2012

Christmas Entertainment in SheffieldAs the night draw in and the cold is undoubtably here, I am very busy performing at christmas events in Sheffield and beyond. The bulk of my performances this year are for Best Parties Ever in Sheffield. A series of christmas dinners with entertainment, we do a number of acts between the courses before leaving the revellers to dance the night away. This year we have a Rio carnival theme and we perform aerial hoop, duo silks, fire hula hoop and our finale act is solo corde lisse into doubles into a web spin. We opened last week and the entertainment has been going down very well so far.


Liverpool Fashion Week
Mon, Oct 22nd, 2012

Liverpool Fashion WeekLast saturday so us performing at the closing event for Liverpool Fashion Week. Asked to come up with an idea for their Glitz and Glam event, we decided on a silks act complete with lots of accessories, shoes, handbags, jewlery, scarves and lots of glitter! We gradually removed these items whilst on the silks, and just before our big roll down we showered the room in glitter. We also performed on stilts and did an aerial hoop act. It was a great night and the audience really enjoyed our acts.
http://www.liverpoolfashionweek.co.uk/gallery.html


THESE TREES ARE MADE OF BLOOD
Thu, Sep 13th, 2012

THESE TREES ARE MADE OF BLOODI recently did a week of research and development in THESE TREES ARE MADE OF BLOOD. A production that is in its development phase, concieved and directed by Amy Draper. The show is set in 1970's Argentina and tells the tragic story of one of Argentinas thousands of deceparacidos, those citizens disapeared by their own government. The production is set in and around a cabaret club, and I was there as a hula hooper, the others in the cast were actors, musicians, singers and a lip sync drag artist. We performed scratch showing at Battersea Arts Centre on 3 nights. It was a great week of work and I wish Amy every luck with the award her project is up for.
http://www.bac.org.uk/whats-on/these-trees-are-made-blood-scratch/


Y Storm receives great reviews
Fri, Aug 10th, 2012

Y Storm receives great reviewsHalf way through our first run of shows, Y Storm is receiving great reviews, which is credit to director Elen Bowman, the cast and the production team. Read one by following the link below.
http://anastasiacatris.wordpress.com/2012/08/09/theatr-genedlaethol-cymru-y-storm/


Y Storm at the Eisteddfod
Sun, Aug 5th, 2012

We are nearing our first show of Y Storm, the tent is set up at The Eisteddfod, the set is looking beautifully evocative, and us actors and circus performers are getting nervous! A month of rehearsals is coming to an end. The show is looking good with just a few last minute tweaks to do. There are performances every evening this week and one on saturday afternoon. Look forward to an action packed theatrical extravaganza, including harness flying, counterweights, silks, corde lisse, aerial hoop, fire hula hoop and some scary stilt walkers.
http://festival.london2012.com/events/9000962175


Y Storm
Mon, Jul 9th, 2012

I'm happy to be in Carmarthen to start work on Y Storm, a welsh language version of The Tempest, as part of the World Shakespear festival. As a circus performer amongst a cast of proffessional actors I am there as one of the Spirits that accompany Aerial in the play. We fly around in the air, using aerial dance, silks, rope, aerial hoops and harness' to create the aerial effects. I also hope to be using my hula hoop, stilt walking and fire performance skills in the show. This is the first week of creating the shows, and promises ot be a contrast to the corporate events I performed silks and aerial hoop at recently.


Music of the Spheres
Fri, Jun 29th, 2012

Music of the SpheresLast Saturday saw a performance in Rotherham of Music of the Spheres, in collaboration with Open Minds Theatre Company. I was in a 36 ft inflatable performing on silks, whilst Simon De Sorger played flute inside an 8ft inflatable sphere. The weather was poor but we attracted an enthusiastic audience for our performances inside Rotherham Market. It was lovely to perform aerial in the sphere again especially with the live music. The last time we performed it was to close an arts festival in Turku, Finland, on a river, which was part of the European Capital of Culture celebrations- see the picture
http://www.thestar.co.uk/lifestyle/blowing-bubbles-1-4669034


Looping the Loop
Mon, May 28th, 2012

Looping the LoopOn the 19th of May Manchester celebrated the Olympic Flame's arrival in the UK with a special event in Salford. I was lucky enough to be one of the performers in the spectacular show put on as part of these celebrations. It was a collaboration between Walk The Plank and Citrus Arts, and involved us arriving in a boat and performing a silks routine underneath a bridge that was raised up 20m in the air, whilst aerial hoop performers and choreographed flag performers were on top of the bridge. It was topped off by a fire works display. The wind was strong on rehearsal day, which made the silks quite difficult, but we managed and a good time was had by all!


Students end of course show
Mon, Apr 2nd, 2012

I teach aerial on the Circus in Performance course at greentop circus centre in Sheffield. This is a 3 month, full time proffessional circus foundation course. The students are now busy preparing for their end of course show, which is always a nerve wracking time for all!. This year in aerial their will be two corse lisse (rope) routines, one silks and a pair doing solo and doubles trapeze. It is amazing to see the routines come together, especially as 10 weeks ago most of them had never been on a piece of aerial equipment. The quality of the routines is great this year, especially from those with strong performance skills. The show is called "Something Wicked This Way Comes" and is at Greentop Circus Centre on the 13th and 14th April at 8pm.


Confex Showcase
Tue, Mar 6th, 2012

This week I am performing for an agency at the Confex Showcase in London, a high profile international events showcase. The silks look beautiful hanging in the 10m high venue and I have had lots of interest from my silks and hula hoop performances, and am the only aerial artist at the event. On Thursday I am back in Sheffield to teach trapeze, rope and silks on the Circus In Performance course.


In Brussles
Sun, Feb 19th, 2012

In BrusslesI am in Brussels for a week of proffessional development. Doing workshop in Hand-balancing,Trapeze and creative aerial at Espace Catastrophe, a very interesting creative space for circus. It really nice to spend the week learning and working hard without the pressure of an up coming performance.I expect to come back refreshed and full of ideas!


Feedback
Thu, Feb 9th, 2012

Last week I did an aerial silks performance at The Hilton in Manchester. It was a corporate awards ceremony, the evening went well, and I subsequently got back the following feedback: "Claire was brilliant, she did a lovely job. Everything went perfectly. We will definitely keep you in mind next time.”


Invisible Circus show at The Citadel of Hope, Sheffield
Mon, Jan 23rd, 2012

Invisible Circus show at The Citadel of Hope, SheffieldLast night I had the privilege to perform at The Citadel of Hope in Sheffield, in a beautiful old theatre. The show was a collaboration between The Ivisible Circus (Bristol), Occupy Sheffield and Sheffield Circus performers. The performance was attended by a capacity audience who had a thouroughly good time, and were warm and appreciative throughout. I performed Cascade- my corde lisse act (rope) amongst a mixture of jugglers, silks acts, doubles trapeze acts, diablo, walking ladder, spoken word and music. All compared by Doc Fransisco. It was a lovely performance experience.


Client feedback
Mon, Dec 26th, 2011

Client feedbackIts always nice when a client e-mails you especially to say how much they enjoyed your performance. Myself and a colleague did a fire performance at a wedding lately, performing fire swinging, body burning, fire eating, fire poi, fire juggling and fire hula hoop. Here is what they said about us: "we would both like to say we were really impressed with the performers. They put on a fantastic show and our guests were mesmerized! They interacted with everyone and were very funny and entertaining. They were also very nice people and really made our evening special so thanks to them both. They were most definitely better than fireworks!"
http://www.madammango.co.uk/hulahoopsfire.php


Christmas Entertainment
Mon, Dec 12th, 2011

This is a busy time of year for all circus perormances. I have been providing christmas entertainment at the Best Parties Ever christmas parties in Sheffield. They have a packed schedule, we are doing meet and greet as stilt walkers, an aerial hoop performance, a fire show and a silks duet as a finale. In between these parties I have been stilt walking up and down the country at many day and evening events.


Rigging and auditions
Wed, Nov 30th, 2011

I have spent the last 2 weeks wizzing around the country, either rigging aerial equipment or auditioning for performances. Two very different activities. The rigging is for various christmas parties around the country, and I have put up countless trapeze's, silks, ropes and aerial hoops. Auditions are always an experience, my last two were both well run and enjoyable. I'm still awaiting the outcome!


A busy week
Wed, Nov 2nd, 2011

This week has been really busy. Did a short tour doing aerial- silks and rope, for Carnival Du Vampires Rock over the weekend, visiting Plymouth, Liverpool and Nottingham. Which was fantastic fun, the shows went really well. The highlight, for me has to be performing my rope (corde lisse) act to Hell's Bells, with huge jets of flame coming off the stage, 2 of the dancers with fire fans, and of course the band playing, what a buzz!. That was 3 nights of shows, followed by returning to Liverpool for a fire performance at Heebie Jeebies, and then a days work in a school in London as part of Avid Shenanigans. One of the great things about this job is how varied it can be!
http://www.madammango.co.uk/hulahoopsfire.php


Madam Mango at Cabaret Boom Boom
Sun, Oct 16th, 2011

Madam Mango at Cabaret Boom BoomI have recently been performing my hula hoop act at Cabaret Boom Boom, in their special shows for the Sheffield comedy festival (Crookes social club) and the Barnsley Civic. The shows went really well, playing to a capacity audience in Crookes and a smaller but very warm audience in Barnsley. My act went down very well and it was great to share the stage with so many fabulous acts.
http://cabaretboomboom.co.uk


Cirque Du Vampires Rock
Wed, Oct 5th, 2011

Cirque Du Vampires RockI'm pretty excited to be performing in Cirque Du Vampires Rock again this year. We did Nottingham arena last year and the show was a great success. So this year we are doing 4 venues- Plymouth, Liverpool, Nottingham and Billigham at the end of October begining of November.Its so much fun to perform as part of this really theatrical rock show, the band playing, fireworks going off and the inimitable Steve Steinman fronting the show. This is rock at its finest! This job is never predicatable and definatly not boring!
http://www.vampiresrock.com


Avid Shenanigans
Sun, Sep 25th, 2011

Avid ShenanigansThroughout september I have been working on Avid Shenaigans a collaborative performance with visual artist Sarah Jane Palmer. It includes aerial performance, animation, interactive shadow puppetry and has an underlying metaphysical narrative. This is a piece that we started work on a few years ago, this year we managed to get funding to make it as a piece. The process has been challenging and enjoyable, and as always when you have to finally make a performance there are loads of ideas that get left out as they don't fit or you don't have time to develop them. So those ideas can go forward to the next time we get the opportunity to try out our ideas. We have a preview performance on Weds 28th Septmeber to an invited audience, which will be, of course the test of the performance.
http://www.sarahjanepalmer.co.uk


Madam Mango on S4C


Madam Mango on S4CI had to brush up on my Welsh recently, as I went down to Llanelli to perform on Y Llwyfan, a welsh language television programme. It's a variety show and they wanted, as well as my hula hoop act on stage, an interview in Welsh. I grew up speaking Welsh, but as I don't live there anymore, I always feel a little rusty when speaking. The interview went fine, as did my act on their stage. You can watch it on the iplayer for limited time only, so get watching............
http://www.s4c.co.uk/clic/e_level2.shtml?programme_id=521154120