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Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Circus Oz tumbles into Canberra
 

Former Canberran Jeremy Davies (centre) from Circus Oz juggles with the local Warehouse Circus' Elena Hood (13) and Jake Silvestro (21).
 Photo: Rohan Thomson
from:  theage.com.au
Date October 2, 2012
by Ron Cerebona
Circus Oz has tumbled, flipped and juggled its way back to Canberra for a new show, From the Ground Up, which opens at The Canberra Theatre tomorrow tonight.

Today at the Warehouse Circus headquarters in Chifley, three Circus Oz performers – Flip Kammerer, Luke Taylor and former Canberran Jeremy Davies – gave a taste of what’s in store – acrobatics, balancing acts, juggling, and more – as well as passing on skills and techniques to a new generation of circus performers aged from nine to 21.

Jack Mitchell, 17, is at the end of his second year with Warehouse Circus. He had become interested in circus because family members were performers. He began juggling and manipulation in his mid-teens.

He said, ‘‘I was self-taught and wanted to expand my skills.’’
Among the areas being enhanced yesterday were ‘‘passing’’ (throwing clubs back and forth) and ‘‘tumbling’’ (acrobatics).

Mitchell said, ‘‘There’s a lot of things I’ve never seen before that I’m trying out.’’

These included backflips and ‘‘Arabians’’ (180-degree twists into front somersaults).

He said he was auditioning for the National Institute of Circus Arts later in the week.

Davies, 39, grew up in O’Connor and left school at 17 to become a travelling  performer. At 21 he joined Warehouse Circus as an instructor for several years but has returned periodically and has seen it grow from about 50 students to more than 300 now.

In 1999 he and some friends formed their own circus company, Kronik, in Melbourne and he ran his own training space for  a few years before joining Circus Oz in 2006 in Canberra as a replacement when a performer was seriously injured during the opening-night performance.

A juggler, pyramid base and tuba player, Davies also performs what he calls ‘‘tragic magic’’ – a  comedy conjuring routine where things keep going wrong.

He said he had sustained many injuries during the course of his performing career including herniated discs in his neck, breaks and sprains.

But, he said, he still loved circuses for the group work, the physicality and the sense of everyone pulling together to achieve a performance that was spectacular, entertaining and as safe as possible.

He said he came back to Canberra periodically, not just to visit family and to perform but to pass on skills to upcoming talents.

‘‘This group was really good ... we’re seeing the next generation,’’ he said.

Asked if he felt the newcomers were starting to breathe down his neck, he said, ‘‘Always – but that’s a good sign.’’

From the Ground Up will perform at the Canberra Theatre on October 3, 5 and 6 at 7.30pm and October 4, 6 and 7 at 1.30pm. Tickets $39.60-$58. Bookings: 62752700 or canberratheatrecentre.com.au
Read more: http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/circus-oz-tumbles-into-canberra-20121002-26wxd.html#ixzz289YYRBVn

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