Wings in my Heart (Big Sexy Circus City : 7-30 Aug : 14.30 & 20.00 : 2hrs 30 mins)

“Visually and technically spectacular”

Editorial Rating: 4 Stars: Outstanding

On entering the Big Sexy Circus City compound one is greeted by acrobats just casually performing to the queue of punters, while a tightrope walker works his way backwards along a wire overhead, occasionally stopping to balance on one leg. You know, how a normal night starts. When you enter the big top, it only gets more impressive.

While the opening few minutes take a little adjusting to (there’s fire, there’s water and there are people parading around dressed as various fairground attractions for no particular reason), it soon turns into a circus spectacle with amazing acts, unlike anything I’ve ever seen.

We’re warmed into the spectacle with a wonderful solo tap routine, accompanied in part by a drummer. The dancer starts in a small circle of light, and makes fun of chasing the light as it moves to continue his routine. A few minutes later he’s filling the whole stage with energy and playing a very enjoyable call-and-response rhythmic game with the drummer. Straight after this, there’s a breathtaking counter-balance rope routine, with two performers supporting each other’s weight while performing daring swings and tumbles. Their artistry on the ropes was incredible, while how they supported and propelled each other seemed to defy all laws of science.

Perhaps my favourite sequence followed directly after this, which involved a lot of balls suspended from the ceiling which swung like pendulums across the stage, with an intricate contemporary dance routine performed in between swings. How the performers managed to dodge them with such apparent ease was again a cause for wonder.

Also worth noting is the performance’s closing act, which I won’t spoil but is absolutely worth holding out for. Control and patience are brought new meaning with one performer and her selection of sticks…

Throughout this show the costumes, sound and lighting are all stunning. Each adds more depth to an already very sensory performance, and go to show how much love, care and artistry have gone into developing it. I’ll admit I didn’t really understand everything that was going on (there wasn’t a clear narrative or sense of development), but with a show as visually and technically spectacular as this, you really don’t need to. You can just sit and be in awe of spectacle, scraping your jaw up off the floor at the end.



Reviewer: Steve Griffin  (Seen 12 August)