Tuesday, 22 October 2019

WHITIANGA WEATHER

A huge array of talent on display in Circus Aotearoa performances

Last weekend (from Friday 18 January to Sunday 20 January), Circus Aotearoa once again wowed the Mercury Bay community with four spectacular performances at the grounds of Mercury Bay Area School in Whitianga.

The Raglan-based circus is on their 11th tour of New Zealand. Whitianga is always part of their itinerary.

The Coromandel Peninsula was their first stop this time around and they will soon be making their way down south, performing in as many towns as possible.

I attended the performance last Friday evening. Despite the threatening rain clouds, the atmosphere was one of excitement. Fresh popcorn, candy floss, lollies and drinks were on sale, which added to the circus theme.

Once inside the stunning traditional big top tent, I was lucky enough to be seated ringside, only a few meters way from the performers. Veteran ringmaster, Damian Gordon, kicked off the show with a welcome, before we were straight into the first act of the night.

Throughout the performance, a huge array of talent was on display. The performers were of all different ages and came from both from New Zealand and overseas. The audience witnessed jugglers, aerial displays, tight rope and ladder walking, precarious balancing acts and more.

The youngest performer, Artemis, wowed everyone with a beautiful hula hoop routine, using nothing but her body to keep many hoops spinning at once. Matthias mesmerised the audience with a crazy display of talent as he balanced himself on a plank of wood placed atop a pile of moveable objects while juggling clubs. Justin’s display of upper body strength, doing with one arm what most people will struggle to do with two, was nothing short of amazing. In one of the last acts, Irene stunned us all as she climbed to the top of a long rope and then proceeded to twist her body into amazing positions, complete with an astounding spinning routine called the Spanish Web.

Of course-no circus is complete without a clown. The children were thoroughly excited when Damian Gordon’s alter ego, Pod the Clown, took centre stage, delighting everyone with a range of antics. He even used a piece of my hair in one of his jokes!

The entire show had a feel-good vibe and was highly interactive. The audience was encouraged to participate in some of the acts, whether from their own seats or by joining the performers in the ring.

One look at the audience with their huge smiles and laughter and it wasn’t difficult to see that the show was a resounding success.

A huge thank you to Circus Aotearoa for not only their performances over the weekend, but also the continuous hard work and dedication that goes into making the performances possible for communities like ours to enjoy. We very much look forward to their return!   

Picture: Justin, one of the Circus Aotearoa performers, in action in Whitianga last weekend.

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The Mercury Bay Informer is a highly popular community newspaper, based in Whitianga. The paper is distributed throughout the Coromandel Peninsula, coast to coast from Thames to north of Colville.