Review: Cirque Berserk at Norwich’s Theatre Royal

Cirque Berserk appearing at the Theatre Royal. The Timbuctoo acrobats limbo under fire. Picture: DEN

Cirque Berserk appearing at the Theatre Royal. The Timbuctoo acrobats limbo under fire. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

Circus in all its forms has hit the big time and the Theatre Royal has joined the party with Zippos and its creation Cirque Berserk.

Cirque Berserk appearing at the Theatre Royal. Knife thrower Tony and his wife Nikol. Picture: DENIS

Cirque Berserk appearing at the Theatre Royal. Knife thrower Tony and his wife Nikol. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

Zippos Circus is well known for its traditional, family shows. But there's no big top here.

They have created the work just for theatres.

That means there's more than a nod to the sort of entertainment that usually treads these hallowed boards. The narrative of suspense and the intimacy of the performances are worthy of the best dramatist.

Strap acrobat, Jackie, for instance, does some virtuoso aerialism on her twirling rope, but it's her frighteningly well-timed falls that get you wondering what will happen next. As the strap tightens about her ankles, you feel her pain.

Cirque Berserk appearing at the Theatre Royal. Lucius' motorcycle team inside the Globe of Terror. P

Cirque Berserk appearing at the Theatre Royal. Lucius' motorcycle team inside the Globe of Terror. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016


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Czech knife thrower Toni hurls axes at his wife as she spins on a board. He's deadly accurate, but once or twice it seems his wrist slips... where will this story end?

The finale sees four motorcyclists whizzing perilously around the interior of a giant spherical cage. As they dodge collision at every turn, it's gripping drama – and the dangers of it appear all too real and very close at hand.

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The show runs until Sunday.

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