Will there be a next generation of actobats ?
Children screaming and gazing, colours and a more or less weird show are the terms you would associate normally with the big circus. The circus, a form of show, which appeared in ancient times, is now something from the category of things too less understood by people.
It is usually a tent, in which amazing things happen, in a place called the “arena”, sourrounded by the people watching. The acrobats, clowns and trapeze acts are familiar to anyone who has seen more circus shows. I have always been amazed by the things those people pull up. Making circle piruettes in the sky always seemed harder than it apparently looked. I thought the people traveling in the trailers must have a rather original life, compared to our town life. So I decided to find out more, directly from the source and asked a circus artist to show and let me shoot life in and around their tent.
Irina was the name of the stunt lady who showed me around, taking me backstage, to the animals and around their estblishment. It certainly is not a view you see every day. There, show animals were all together with the people working on the show, lights, sound, effects, etc.
The woman showed me her son, wondering wether he could get a future in the circus, that because the circus had had a big collapse, from the financial point of view, but they managed to save it.
With all this, she was very excited by the show, and invited me to come later.
I, although did not actually mean that, interviewed her the whole time, because I was eager to find out many things about the people there; how do the animals adapt, how do they decide where they are going to travel, how can one get to be part of a team for such a show and many other things she kindly answered.
The show started after the afternoon passed, but I got there earlier wanting to say hi to her before she started her 1 – hour preparation for the show. During the representation, I was asked by the clown in the arena, and was part of a “stunt” he did. I can only hope it was a coincidence. During the break, I found Irina outside her trailer chatting with some members of the “club”. Later, she would get ready for the show. Although they did not have elephants, which they had to give the show had in my opinion almost the same impact.
The show is nice, great I can say thinking at the amount of work one makes to do those stunts, seen as unreal by children and not taken seriously as they would deserve by the grown ups.
It really changes a man knowing that for them it is not just a business or a career, it is truely a lifestyle and a challange to live the circus way, surviving in a world that, as Irina said, says has no time for the thrill of the circus anymore.
What would it be like to run away with a circus? Like any form of entertainment, the circus has a dark side, of poverty and possible dissapointment, aswell as a glitter side of light and applause.
The last thing, mentioned above and the hope are two things that make lives real.
I thank the group of the International Budapest circus.
Check the photos out, too. (coming soon)