Circus performer Philip Rosenberg trained in Chinese acrobatics before starting to build up a repertoire of skills as a hand balancer. He’s all set to perform with Cirque le Roux at the Edinburgh Fringe in the company’s new show, The Elephant in the Room.
Have you performed at the fringe before?
I’ve never experienced the fringe, so I’m excited to see what it’s going to be like. I’ve heard that there’s a lot going on and you can get caught up… because there’s so many shows, there’s a little bit of a rat race of trying to get your show to be seen. This year, there’s a ton of circus. They’re putting a huge focus on circus this year because there are 12 shows with the Circus Hub. We’re friends with the other companies, so it’s going to be a great time.
What’s going to make Cirque le Roux stand out?
We kind of took a very theatrical spin. In our show there’s about 50% theatre and 50% circus. There’s an actual storyline for the most part that actually gets constructed and deconstructed. But mainly we are telling a story, there are clear-cut characters and there’s a very theatrical and even cinematic twist on the show.
You were in the original cast of Pippin on Broadway, did that inspire The Elephant in the Room?
It was actually interesting working with the director of Pippin, because she really wanted all the circus to come out for the theatre. The circus was there to support the thematic elements… it wasn’t just glued on over everything else. Every circus moment from Pippin had a reason to be there. And I feel like when we came back and decided to do our own show, we really wanted to do the same thing, because the audience has much more of a connection to what you’re doing if they find that you have a reason to do it. I feel like a lot of times in circus shows we see these amazing flips, amazing acts, but there’s no real emotional connection. And so I think we wanted to just bring that to the next level so the audience was with us on an emotional level.
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