Stages across Hungary have been quiet for almost a year and half. The permanent ‘big top’ in Budapest shut down as well as any other entertainment venues, as crowds stayed home, away from the circus.
Inside, dozens of acrobats, gymnasts, jugglers and clowns tried to stay show-ready, performing online each weekend.
While it provided a way to keep audiences entertained and business ticking over, performers said finding the motivation to keep practicing on their own was the hardest part.
Seventh generation circus performer Kevin Richter had to keep his troupe of 11 horse acrobats trained and fit for months on end, not knowing when they’d see their beloved crowds again.
“I really miss it because that’s my life, you know, as a small child I was already performing in front of thousands of people and it’s a really long time that I was not performing in front of people,” he said.
Kevin’s family runs a travelling circus that usually tours throughout Europe, but the pandemic has kept them grounded, with nowhere to go.
He and his troupe managed to join forces with the national circus in Budapest, taking part in their online shows since the beginning of the year.
While usually the businesses would be in competition, the virus that kept so many people apart bought circus families together.
“The circus artists are very close people, so we are helping each other in difficult times. We are conquerors in one way, but we are also a family in one way so we are helping each other,” Kevin said.
Family is what inspired the new show running under Budapest’s famous circus tent near the city park.
Called Dynasty, it pays tribute to the generations of circus performers Hungary has produced, taking the audience on a trip down memory lane.
Roller Skating acrobats, child jugglers, magicians and performing cats all take their turn at the center of the stage.
For the first night back, generations of circus performers were the ones in the audience seats.
Former juggler Fudi, performed for many years at the same venue after joining the circus in 1959. He was thrilled to see audiences back again…
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