Working with Circus Paletti in Mannheim, Germany in 2016
I have worked in many countries, but my projects in Belgium, Australia and just this past summer in Germany with The Paletti Youth Circus are, perhaps the best indicator of what I am trying to achive. In July of this summer I had occasion to do training and choreography with 25 circus students 18 to 35 years old. Circus Paletti just completed work on a brand new 1.6 million dollar circus training facility in Mannheim, built by the German government and I was the first trainer to come and work with the company members on their next show. We are now working towards a future relationship wherein we can work up some sort of cultural exchange and create a ensemble comprised of Canadians and Germans through this project.
Circus Paletti is a community circus and all the members have regular jobs in addition to their circus activities. I was astounded at how disciplined they were and the speed at which we developed new work over the single week I worked with them. The weekend set of classes was an intense 12 hours per day for two days that saw us develop the full base choreography of the finale of their show, which will be presented in November. We are discussing plans for next year and this project.
I did several projects in Belgium both of which were 3 months in length. The first was developed with High School students that resulted in four performances at an annual Festival of Street Theatre in Menen, Belgium. The second took place in Balen, Belgium with 12 adults ages 23 to 35 performing 4 shows. Participants in both projects trained with me four evenings a week and one 6 hour day each weekend. The project was developed at a Belgian performing arts centre called “het Dommelhof”. The project was financed by both the performing arts centre, the Flemish government and the festivals.
The weekend class that was held each week involved a pot luck lunch that everyone contributed to so that we could continue working after lunch. They organized a huge meal, I didn’t. I told them to bring a bag lunch.
My project in Tasmania, Australia was developed over 36 classes during a 2 months period. 18 students, ranging in age from 7 through 18 took part and would come to 3 classes a week, 2 to 3 hours a class for eight weeks. Classes took place between 3 and 6 pm. One performance was scheduled at the completion of the training period.
There are photos and videos on the website.