The circus tent: a choice

Text från DVDn Estétiques du cirque contemporain.


The new circus of the 80’s did away with most of the circus codes of the day (thus making them part of the traditional, or classical circus). But it has also adopted one of these codes principal canonical symbols; that of the travelling tent. However, since the 90’s, hardly 20 percent of companies perform under canvas.
Performing under a tent does not theoretically exclude variety of form. Yet one cannot help but notice that most performers who choose the circus tent promote an “aesthetic of the familiar”, by creating a convivial and intimate relationship with the audience, evoking familiar themes (a gypsy-like, fairground ambiance that is rustic or coarse, with scenes from everyday life), or using simple and basic means.
Faithful to the architectural definition of the circus as a “central playground space” (Philippe Goudard) with “multiple points of view” (Johann Le Guillerm), these circuses mostly present mutli-disciplinary, circular shows (with exception f the Cirque Plume). They often remain attached to the mounting of the feat itself, which simply stands on its own, or contributes to a certain atmosphere, as in the Cirque Rasposo, or to serve a radical message, as with Cirque ici.