Circus Oz: “From the Ground Up”
Throughout my 7 or so years as a circus-obsessed kid living in the Boston area, I have made every effort to see circus shows whenever they come to town. When my friends ask for tickets to Wicked or the Celtics for their Birthdays, I beg to see Quidam and Cirque Eloize. In all my years of circus-seeking, I have never seen a show even remotely like Circus Oz.
“From the Ground Up” is a fun, energetic show that left me smiling for the rest of the day. The set, a colorful construction site, provided a clever framework for the show, and the performers’ “work” on the set led to seamless transitions. One particularly memorable tightwire act took place on a suspended, moving I-beam.
Creative, thrilling acts were interspersed with numerous comedic moments. The performance was kid-friendly, but contained liberal amounts of adult humor. Each performer showed diverse and high-level talents as well as fantastic stage presence. Unlike some other shows I’ve attended, “From the Ground Up” was clearly driven by comedy and character development as well as by raw skill.
A major highlight was the prominent role of the musicians on stage. The percussionist performed a drum solo while swinging around the stage. Some other notable acts were foot juggling (of a table!), hat juggling, a cyr wheel solo, and a flying trapeze/cradle act. Impressive acrobatics linked everything together.
Circus Oz is a contemporary circus based out of Australia. Along with putting on an impressive, rollicking show, the organization is dedicated to social justice (specifically women’s rights, land rights for indigenous Australians, and the rights of asylum seekers.) As described by the Boston Celebrity Series, “Circus Oz promotes the best of the Australian spirit: generosity, diversity, and death-defying bravery.” During the performance, one of the characters instructed “don’t be jealous, be inspired.”
If you get the chance, don’t hesitate to see this wildly entertaining show!