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NoFit State Circus: Tabu – My Fear And Yours, Hove Lawns, until May 10
The suspended bodies floating in mid-air at the start of Nofitstate Circus’s Tabu give little indication of the excitement and passion that is to fill the next two hours.
A contemporary circus with no sawdust, painted clowns or ringside seating, this is an in-your-face show, with the standing audience free to move around the performance space.
From the opening trapeze act the pace barely lets up as rigs are set up in and around the spectators and performers flit among the crowd.
The lack of formal seating means you get an up-close view of unbelievable stunts, such as Vanina Fandino’s tightrope walk in high heels and a passionate human trapeze that closes the first half, all backed by a live rock soundtrack.
Every so often the 12 performers explode into chaos, making eyes dart across the arena to see individuals bounce on the vertical trampolines or float on aerial rigs above the audience’s heads.
The show’s theme is confronting fears, using characters from Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s 100 Years Of Solitude to form a narrative arc.
But knowledge of the book is not essential to enjoy the show.
An extra visual angle comes from the period costumes of a dusty Latin American country which replace the sparkly leotards of traditional circus.
The shepherding of the audience around the performance space can be disconcerting at first but, once you settle into the rhythm of the show, the movement becomes second nature and the two hours fly by.
Tabu is a breathtaking and unforgettable start to this year’s Festival Fringe.
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