Men In the Ring -- the Rise of the Boy Bands of Circus - CircusTalk

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Men In the Ring — the Rise of the Boy Bands of Circus

The Circus world is experiencing more and more activities and events that focus on gender and its influence in circus productions. Here are a few examples: articles (such as this one by Susie Williams), open talks (such as the one held in Barcelone last April) or festivals (such as Festival CAU, in Grenade, Spain). Just last week in Montreal, there were two events (Cirque Off& Circus, Culture & Diversity)  sandwiching the Montréal Complètement Cirque festival that covered the issue of gender as encompassed in a larger discussion about diversity in circus. All of these examples recognize the need for more diversity on and off the stage, especially in terms of gender. These occasions offer us an excellent opportunity to exchange ideas about circus from this point of view.  In this text, I would like to examine the changing role masculinity plays in some contemporary circus companies.
Of course, masculinity is also part of gender studies, but since we have culturally learned that “masculine is normal”, we sometimes take for granted that men’s representation have nothing to tell us in terms of gender, hence nothing to investigate. Yet every piece of art is related to cultural codes that we can decipher, and the ones made by men are no exception. Circus is part of the world we live in, although as with every form of art, one of its prerogatives is to reinvent and enrich reality. In classic circus, gender has a dominant role, linked to the family and business structure. It is generally understood that many circus disciplines have traditionally been related to gender: we have a common past in which clown, juggling, strength have been for male artists, while antipodism, aerial solos, and contortionism have been mainly a matter for female artists. Of course, there are always historic examples of transgressions, but they are often presented as that, as the except...
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Maria Folguera

Maria has collaborated with the artistic department of Teatro Circo Price since 2009. María graduated from the Royal School of Dramatic Art (RESAD) with a degree in stage management. She then studied literary theory and received a postgraduate degree in performing arts practices from the University of Alcalá de Henares. She has written and directed three plays, as well as some short performance pieces, for her company Ana Pasadena. Her latest show as a director is La increíble historia de la chica que llegó la última (The Incredible Story Of The Girl Who Got Last) by Brazilian playwright Carla Guimaraes. This show was part of the New Plays from Europe Festival (2014) in Wiesbaden, Germany. As a writer, she has appeared recently in two anthologies of new Spanish writers: Última temporada (Last Season, New Spanish Narrators 1980-1989), and Bajo treinta (Below Thirty). Her first published novel, Sin juicio, won the Arte Joven Award in 2001. She published her second novel, Los primeros días de Pompeya», in 2016