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Monday, 25 May 2015

Circus comes to town in spectacular style

A UNICYCLING juggler brought magic and mayhem to Newbrough on Sunday night as Circus Berzercus arrived in style.

The show promised fantastic entertainment for adults and children alike, courtesy of a “seriously funny” award-winning comedy duo compared to the great Morecambe and Wise.

An ambitious promise – but one that actually delivered. And the small town hall was filled with laughter as Gerald and Wallace presented a wonderful show – a life-affirming, uplifting, endearing mix of slapstick, chaotic clowning, dazzling juggling, magic, audience interaction and fun banter.

The scene was set by Gerald the juggler – who informed us all that his partner had left him for the bright lights of the West End. But we needn’t worry. A new partner was on his way.

Cue the arrival of unicycling Wallace in an outfit reminiscent of Wee Jimmy Krankie: school blazer, knee-length shorts and the obligatory baseball cap, set at a jaunty angle.

Members of the audience became part of the act as one by one they were invited up on stage to help with tricks and stunts.

One slightly mortified but impressively game mother was even encouraged to cartwheel – but settled for a rather wonderful pirouette instead – to appreciative applause from the audience.

It was all rip-roaring, laugh-a-minute great fun, underpinned by some serious talent: And by that I mean not just the circus skills, the unicycling and juggling, but the ability to keep an audience mesmerised and engaged with a simple plot, very few props, minimum special effects and a small cast.

There is a serious side to this show too. Learning, as we all know, is far more effective if it’s fun and circus skills, according to research, can help with spelling, handwriting, fine motor skills and self esteem. So there you go – not just fun but educational too. What more can you ask from a family show?

Circus Berzercus’s latest show, Funny Business, is doing the rounds in Northumberland, Cumbria and Durham thanks to the Northumberland community touring scheme, Highlights.

Emma Andrews