The 33rd Edition of the Festival CIRCa will take place this October in Auch, France. Over a series of 10 days there will be 27 shows, 70 representations, and 182 artists and technicians on board to present something rare an beautiful these days–a gathering of performing humans! A major event in the national and European cultural landscape, CIRCa says it is “strongly anchored in its territory” as the meeting place for circus enthusiasts for 33 years. The entire circus industry (artists, young people from circus schools, programmers) as well as a large audience is usually in attendance.
Reaching out to their supporters and past attendees in an email recently, CIRCa says they want to “Support artists by allowing them to perform, to finally meet the public and to be seen by professionals in the sector, to show that the show is ALIVE, to introduce a circus, circuses still as inventive and to help give visibility to our territory make more sense than ever today.”
This year, the circus theme is exploring different relationships between artists and audiences. Several companies will be presenting under the big top, such as Cirque Pardi!, L’Envolée Cirque, Compagnie 100 Issues and Le Cheptel Aleïkoum. Sticking with the overall vibe of 2020, artists have chosen themes around questioning life and death, understanding relationships with others, handling the madness that everyone carries within themselves, and the pleasures of being together.
Other companies have chosen to play out in the open with monumental scenographies such as Cie Bivouac (who teleport us on a journey to the heart of quantum physics), or in more intimate formats such as the Lichen show by l’Envolée Cirque.
CIRCa also rightly anticipates one of the best tidbits about their upcoming festival, “The envy and the joy of the artists, their excitement at playing (finally!) in front of a passionate and curious audience will make this Festival one of the most intense.”
Although they are enthused about in-person gatherings, CIRCa has made a wise decision to curtail some of that connecting, stating in their newsletter, “Since its origins, the CIRCa Festival has been the crossroads of pedagogies, the place where young people from circus schools from all over the planet meet. This year, the health constraints and the difficulty of moving European school students around in particular means that we will not be able to host either the National Circus School Meetings or the Circle project.” In spite of this, the French Federation of Circus Schools will be present with the Cirque Labs for two circus programs to discover as well as for the training of animators. In addition, FEDEC has challenged the European schools to create videos illustrating the theme “restricted space / unlimited space” that you will be able to discover during the Festival.
They also explain how they had to rethink the format of this edition by adapting to the current health measures meant to contain the spread of the pandemic. In that respect, they have reduced activities around the Festival, offer fewer shows and fewer performances of shows. However, they explain, they will “do everything possible to ensure that the spirit of dialogue, exchange and friendliness blows in once more into the Gascon capital (Auch) to bear witness to the creativity shown by the circus, against all odds.”
• (V)îvre/ Création collective de Circa Tsuïca Fanfare, cirque du collectif Cheptel Aleïkoum
• A nos vertiges / Emma Verbèke et Corentin Diana
• CHIMÆRA / Circo Aereo
• Concerto pour un plateau nu / Scène Musicale Mobile
• De la colle pour vos âmes (Cirque, paillettes et sparadrap) / ESAC-TO LIDO
• Desiderata/ Compagnie Cabas
• Don’t feed the alligators/ Compagnie 100 Issues
• ELLE/S / L’Envolée Cirque
• FIQ ! (Réveille toi !) / Groupe Acrobatique de Tanger / Maroussia Diaz Verbèke
• Fournaise/ Centre national des arts du cirque
• Ghost Light : Entre la chute et l’envol/ Machine de Cirque
• Je suis TIGRE / Groupe Noces – Florence Bernad
• K / Kurz Davor
• L’âne & la carotte / Galapiat Cirque / Lucho Smit
• Les hauts plateaux / Mathurin Bolze / Cie MPTA
• Lichen/ L’Envolée Cirque
• Low Cost Paradise / Cirque Pardi!
• M.A.I.S.O.N / Cie SCOM / Coline Garcia
• Nous/ Carte blanche au Pop Circus dans le cadre des « 45 ans »
• Perceptions/ Cie Bivouac
• Pour Hêtre / iéto
• Presque Parfait ou le paradis perdu / Cie PRÉ-O-COUPÉ / Nikolaus
• Três/ Groupe Zède
• Un contre Un / Cie L’Oublié(e) / Raphaëlle Boitel
• Une pelle / Olivier Debelhoir
• Labos cirque/ FFEC
All images provided courtesy of CIRCa. Feature photo credit: Kim Campbell