Circolombia Return to London
As one of the world’s most exciting circus troupe’s to evolve from last year’s CircusFest, JungleDrums talks to Circocolombia on their love of performing, Columbian roots and life on tour
With its youthful exuberance and raw energy, circus troupe Circolombia‘s return to London’s Roundhouse theatre could not have come any sooner.
Hailed as one of the most innovative groups to rise out of a recent upsurge in contemporary circus acts, the young performers, ranging from the ages of 17 to 23, give a performance of high-energy acrobatics, circus stunts (such as the infamous “frontal perch” routine) and street dance-all set to a backing track of Latin American reggaeton that ultimately reflects the impoverished upbringing that many of the performer’s experienced growing up in Cali, Western Colombia.
Established back in 1992 by Héctor Fabio Cobo Plata and London-born ex-circus-performer Felicity Simpson, Circolombia was initially set up as an incentive for disadvantaged children of Cali to lend purpose to their otherwise chaotic lives in the slums. Most of the troupe’s performers attended the National School of Circo Para Todos (“Circus for All”), a social as well as professional development project that has over the past twenty years become a marketing talent company- sending a quarter of its graduates to work in worldy-acclaimed circuses (such as Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey) as well as top cruise ships around the world.
So, if you’re expecting candy floss, clapping seals and the usual dated, humdrum circus show, you’ve come to the wrong place. Circolombia is what contemporary circus is all about – raw energy, passion, vibrancy and talent – all set within a multitude of musical and dance styles that will keep you at the edge of your seat and begging for more.
JungleDrums’ Amy Cunningham sat down with Circolombia’s Gustavo Gomez to find out a little more about the project.
How did you get involved in the National School of ‘Circo Para Todos’?
Could you tell us a bit about the recruitment process of training and working with Circo Para Todos?
What is your favourite part of performing?
What has it done to your lives? How it is different?
Which other dance troupe’s/circus groups would you recommend?
Why is Circo Para Todos any different from other circus troupes such as Cirque Du Soleil?
Everyone gets tired at some point, but where on earth do you get your raw energy and vibrancy from for every show?
What do you miss about Colombia when you are away on tour?
Where are your favourite places in Colombia and where would you recommending to our readers?
Do you like London? If so, where have been your favourite places so far/ best moment?
Words and Interview by Amy Cunningham. Photo by Matilda Temperley
April 4th – 16th, 7.30pm (also 2.30pm on 9th & 16th Apr), £5-20