Low incomes and risk of accidents mean circuses fail to attract young talent and have a paucity of new performances.
On April 27, the nearly week-long 2021 National Circus Talent Contest ended. The performances with animals were monotonous and similar to each other, with most involving them balancing on ropes and jumping through hoops.
Most artists performed collective acts, with single and dual performers being rare. Not many managed to impress the audience.
According to industry insiders, time constraints and lack of human resources are the main reasons for the low quality.
Phi Son, deputy director of Phuong Nam Art Theatre, said the contest was supposed to be held last October, and moved at short notice to April, leaving performers with little time to prepare. His team had only one month to prepare.
“We need to come up with new performances this time since the old ones have been used in previous competitions.”
The Vietnam Circus Arts and Variety Intermediate School is the biggest supplier of circus performers, but Phuong Nam Theatre has not been able to recruit from there in the last 10 years, he said.
Son is concerned there might be no young performers when a new theatre is built.
Tong Toan Thang, deputy director of the Vietnam Circus Federation, said even the Vietnam Circus Arts and Variety Intermediate School finds it difficult to get students.
He and his team have gone to boarding schools in mountainous areas, but students there and their parents worry about the lack of a stable future, he said…
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