Circus Royale at the Lower Esplanade, St Kilda (near Luna Park)
Circus Royale is an artistic triumph. I have seen a great deal of circus, but the calibre of acts in this hour and a half show (plus interval) is top shelf.
As breathtaking as many performances are, the best of the best is undoubtedly the Colombian-born Lion Brothers – Saret, Sarius and Samir Leon. Not for naught were they winners at the International Circus Festival in Dubai.
They appear three times during this production.
First up is a stunning highwire performance, where they not only walk – seemingly effortlessly – across a taught metal rope, but ride a unicycle, dance, skip and form a human pyramid. AMAZING!
After interval, Sarius and Samir captivate in the imposing Wheel of Steel.
Their movement propels the apparatus at ever faster speed as it rotates time and again.
They somehow manage to maintain their balance inside and outside man-size hoops at the outer reaches of the equipment.
Now imagine doing that with a blindfold on.
The three bros’ piece de resistance comes at the end of the show, with the motorcycle Globe of Death.
The stunt riders risk their lives on hard revving bikes inside a closed metal sphere within touching distance of each other, going around and around, up and down. WOW!
As Circus Royale’s resident clown, Saret is a beauty.
He has wonderful rapport with the audience, taking “happy snaps” with a giant camera, doing potato tricks and more.
Cassie Millard makes the swinging trapeze seem like a cake walk, while hula hoops are putty in her hands – even when ablaze.
How does Olivia Barker manage to remain intact after her contortion routine? Let’s just say it brings tears to one’s eyes just to contemplate.
Further, I can never view archery the same way after what Barker manages to pull off with bow and arrow "in her feet".
And Miss Tiffany and the Circus Royale Showgirls mesmerise with their increasingly perplexing illusions, the culmination of which involves blazing spikes.
Ringmaster Damian Syred keeps everything moving at pace with no less than eight sparkling and elegant costume changes throughout a most entertaining celebration of circus arts.
Add in popular music and you have a sure-fire winner.
Circus Royale is playing at the Lower Esplanade, St Kilda until 30th April, 2023.
For bookings, go to www.circusroyale.com
The show heads to Airport West in May, before moving to Mill Park in June and Narre Warren towards the end of that month.