Traditionally, circuses would just come to town. Our vision is a year-round circus hub presenting the best the art form has to offer. Staging big ideas on one of Canada’s biggest stages. Ideas from international, national, and local creators of contemporary circus art.
Our first production, Vinyl Vaudeville directed by our founder Daniel Zindler, premiered at an intimate black box theatre, Performance Works, on Granville Island in 2011. This ambitious three-hour experience combined circus, whip-cracking magic, sassy cabaret and comedy, all served up with a gourmet dinner.
Presenting circus in a converted machine shop built circa 1920 was not without its challenges. We learned to rig the trapeze from old wooden beams. We almost forgot to pick-up our Guinness world-record holding finale act from the airport. Yet we loved every moment, and, fortunately for us, audiences and the media seemed to agree:
“It’s not what your great-granny would have seen, but gives a bright new face to the vaudevillian spirit of her day.” Georgia Straight
With various projects in between, including an arts festival produced in partnership with the Downtown Vancouver Business Association, 2013 saw the first edition of a long-running audience favourite: The New Year’s Eve Variety Show. An overnight success you say? Not quite. Our first show, at the 668-seat Vancouver Playhouse, sold just 31 tickets. Ouch! After years of success with other shows, it was a humbling moment. Jump forward, and last year at the Vancouver Playhouse we were able to sell out. We’re currently excited to be increasing the show capacity and are in the process of moving next door to the 2,765-seat Queen Elizabeth Theatre.
“This is the New Year’s Eve tradition we have been searching for! Funny, entertaining and something fun and appropriate for the entire family” Craig Watson (North Vancouver) – Google Review (5 Stars)
Canadians have an international reputation for being circus innovators, mainly thanks to nos amis au Québec. Because west coast touring opportunities are limited, circus productions often find an audience overseas before cities like Vancouver. We plan to change that! Look out for the announcement of a new three-show circus arts series at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre and Vancouver Playhouse featuring the very best of Canadian and international contemporary circus.
Join us as we ditch the tent and experience the global renaissance of circus, together here at home in Vancouver. If you are as excited about the idea of more circus in Vancouver as we are, learn more about getting involved or sign up below to be in the know.