Family circus gets its act together
STEPHEN PULLINGER With four days to go to the opening, Portuguese juggler Goncalves finally arrived in Yarmouth to complete the line-up for this summer's Hippodrome circus.
With four days to go to the opening, Portuguese juggler Goncalves finally arrived in Yarmouth to complete the line-up for this summer's Hippodrome circus.
A relieved Christine Jay, who runs the show with her husband Peter, said organising the annual spectacular was a juggling act in itself.
In the weeks leading to tomorrow's first performance, she has been anxiously monitoring the whereabouts of acts recruited from as far afield as Mongolia and Mexico.
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"On Sunday we had a run-through to allow people to get used to the building, and now we will be doing two rehearsals a day right up to our opening show for schools," she said.
Seemingly by magic, as soon as the lights and smiles came on for yesterday's first run-through, it was unerring business as usual.
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Fredi Chy literally made a blazing return to the 102-year auditorium after an absence of 28 years - by diving through a flaming hoop.
His Kung Fu Masters act is being billed as a highlight of the show that Mr Jay described as an "incredible worldwide mix".
Father and son comedy duo Clive Webb and Danny Adams are returning to the Hippodrome with a totally fresh act, and Mexican flying trapeze artists the Flying Rodogels will also be making a welcome reappearance.
Mr Jay said: "For the first time they will be performing in ultra-violet light. It looks amazing as it appears they just come out of the dark, and they will be doing their triple somersault."
Other performers include Batjargal Uyanga, a contortion artist from Mongolia, and an acrobatic troupe called the Kenya Boys.
Zoe Fausto, a local favourite and the first graduate of the Hippodrome's circus school, is performing her aerial act.
The eight Estelle Clifton dancers become the Jan Baines show swimmers for second-half water routines in the Hippodrome's swimming pool - one of only three surviving circus water features.
The circus runs until September 10. Call the box office on 01493 844172.