The Interstellar Circus Show, Parlure Spiegeltent, Brighton, until May 24

The Parlure Spiegeltent is a gorgeous space. But there is just not much of it – space, that is.

Certainly not enough to contain what most of us think of as a circus and only just about enough for what often feels more like a cabaret.

Two girls gyrate and interweave with each other on a pair of ropes. A worthy spectacle, only slightly let down by the fact that, on Monday night, they didn’t really seem to be enjoying themselves.

The Floozies follow – a posse of women of book-club age whose weak interpretation of the Can-Can further dampens the audience’s enthusiasm. About time for the sparkle to kick in, then. And at last it does, with the 20th Century Clowns, a charming girl-boy pairing of acrobats who play off and hang off each other to perfection; super sexy scaffolding pole-dancer Ed Bain who seems to hover up and down the height of the tent; and Miss Merlin, whose dexterity with the hula hoop is astonishing and accompanied by a winning smile.

All of which, when glued together by a ringmaster with make-up and an attitude to rival The Joker’s, added up to an evening which was, on balance, pretty entertaining.


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