We are damn excited to be back at His Majesty’s Theatre, Down Stairs at the Maj. Partnering the fabulous Sugar Blue Burlesque, we are back with a wonderful line up the the ever enigmatic MC Magnus Danger Magnus.
The Maj is a special treat for us, as we will be the first show to present in the down star is post their renovations!
Read on for all the booking information and little teaser and have a fabulous weekend!
Sugar Blue Burlesque and Fliptease present a sumptuous showcase Downstairs at the Maj, giving you the best in Circus and Burlesque performance with Supper Club styling.
Hosted by MC Magnus Danger Magnus, Le Carousel Bleu is a beautiful show incorporating comedy, dance, gorgeous costumes, exhilarating circus talents by Fliptease and alluring performances by the showgirls of Sugar Blue Burlesque.
Our June show features Sugar Blue Burlesque’s Cecile Mimieux, The Sugar Duchess as well as Fliptease’s Miss Gail Force and Harpist Audio Erotica!
Slamming your body into usual shapes, gravitational forces and heavy landings is going to eventually have an impact on the body. After two back to back surgeries of wrist and shoulder earlier this year left me feeling pretty awful and to be honest feeling hopeless about my career as an aerialist. I’m not going to lie. There were tears at times. Going from being over active to completely inactive and dependant on others was a tough gig, but it gets better from here. Silver linings baby, big ones.
1.Building and investing in a great team.
I’ve been privileged to have a great team of people around me over the last decade and the last few months have only strengthened this. Good people are hard to come by so when you find them keep them close. I’m incredibly thankful for finding them and in some cases they found me!
Over the last few months I’ve had to forcibly change habits to adapt for an ever-changing industry and my own capabilities. Some hard lessons and big challenges have really honed what we do best. What I’m really excited about the moment is building more large scale spectacle with some of our key industry partners. Again having to keep the details under wraps is always a bit of a tease but hey after 8 years in the industry…
Fliptease-ing is what we do best.
Aerialist- Felicia O’Brien performing on behalf of Fliptease- Night Club Shows
Circus is trust. Trust between performers. Trust of equipment. Trusting your rigger. The venue. The client. The audience. So the list goes on. One of the key things in getting any show right for all sides is that delicate trust that exists between all of these parties. No matter who you book either as a client, an agent or even your own performance team, spend that little extra time to make sure that its the right fit for all parties. It is a little like dating I guess..best to take your time and find the right match.
Winter has been teasing us with sunshine and beautiful weather.
We had a great weekend hanging out with HBF & Getting Hectic at the AFL this last weekend, because we agree that healthy bodies can do amazing things! With summer just around the corner we are getting ready to get back on tour and into the thick of the corporate season. September see’s us heading back into the desert and up north (more updates to come!), while back in Perth we are excited to have some exceptional new talents in our stables and some big projects to match their extraordinary abilities. In the mean time here’s a photo of of an out door show from last summer – photographer JRPhotography.
Well its been a bold time since my last update. We’ve travelled the world, restructured and honed our skills. I can’t event begin to recount some of the amazing projects and people we have had the privilege to work with.
So instead I’m going to talk about the future. We have an amazing team and I am so proud of them. I can’t wait to unfold a few of our current projects on this little blog, but suffice to say things are literally going to get bigger.
In the mean time here are a few fun images from the last 12 months.
Feathers flying, perfect pouts, and so much glitter it looks like you have slaughtered a pixie on stage. Perth’s first international Burlesque Festival is about to hit this little blossoming metropolis. Fliptease Artist Miss Gail Force is set to run riot on stage for a few guest appearances.
Get it while its hot, these lads and ladies will have you melt of your seat, laugh until you squeal, or just plain gasp with their um.. charms.
Soooo! We are weeks away from the opening of Fringe World Perth and I am really excited to be working on a family show again. With a stellar cast including longtime Fliptease artists comedy extraordinaire Adam O’Connor McMahon (who is trotting off to NICA for a year after “Splat!” finishes its season), it’s very special time for the Fliptease family.
“Splat!” Fringe Kids Cabaret is a kid’s game show gone wrong. There is circus, live music, physical comedy, an MC with a minor god complex. It pretty much spells trouble. I can’t wait. Find more info and buy tickets here
CURRENTLY SWASHBUCKLING MY WAY THROUGH A COACHING COURSE AT THE ÉCOLE NATIONALE DE CIRQUE IN MONTREAL WITH THE HELP OF AN INTERNATIONAL SCHOLARSHIP FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF CULTURE AND THE ARTS IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA.
Snippet- “If you’re happy and you know it squeeze your bum. If your upper body’s unstable on the tightwire squeeze you bum. If your hips turn when you walk and your straight jump is too piked plus your flic flac is a flop, squeeze your bum.
Also, when you squirm in your chair it means your brain is full. Sounds more scientific in french.”
Posted by Scott at 22:33
Tuesday, 1 November 2011
Scotts blog can be found in French and English here.
I am returning to Beijing from Macau as I write this. My lifestyle and career affords me many privileges and one of my favorites is the ability to visit good friends all around the world. Macau is China’s legal gambling territory. According to USA Today, Macau has been leading the gambling revenue stakes against Las Vegas since 2007. With this in mind, it should be no surprise that Macau is home to two of the largest custom-built theaters for circus and spectacle shows in China. I was lucky enough to see both, although I had originally intended to review them separately, I was struck by how differently the shows were produced and marketed to Chinese audiences as well as how it had ultimately affected the shows’ audiences. I wanted to understand why.
Cirque Du Soleil’s “Zaia” housed in the Venetian Hotel has now been running for 3 years. According to the Macau Times Daily the show had such low audience numbers for their 1800 seat venue that rumors of its closure started to appear in the local media (2010). This rumor was later dispelled by Jerry Nadal Senior Vice-President for resident shows of Cirque du Soleil. I also cited from observation of an audience size of approximately 40% on the day that I attended.
Dragone’s “House of Dancing Water” is housed in the City of Dreams hotel and has been running for just over 1 year. On both nights I attended, the show had sold out. Further talking with staff and crew I was told that not only was it the average audience size but when there had been a show cancellation and long show pauses it had caused major troubles to refund or rebook a fully sold out house.
Both multi-million dollar shows have custom made theatres, incredibly talented performers, spectacular rigging teams and great aesthetics. They are also well situated in high-end hotels and casinos with the support of professional marketing teams. Additionally, both Zaia and House of Dancing Water use thematic Chinese elements or performance pieces with in their productions. From a producing point of view Cirque de Soleil’s “Zaia” sticks to Soleil’s successful recipe of a young girl’s journey into a fantastic world and returning from it with a new appreciation of her world. In its design, construction and presentation, it’s very much what I would consider a “circus show” in the new circus genre.
House of Dancing Water is staged as a melodramatic love story with a hero, an anti-hero, and a damsel in distress. An archetypal story, one that a Chinese (and Western) audiences intuitively understand; especially when compared to main land China’s soap opera TV shows. Cirque de Solei’s Zaia, on the other hand, follows an unfamiliar European storyline, one that is not as accessible to Chinese audiences.
House of Dancing Water is billed as a “spectacle”, not as an acrobatics show. While Zaia is a “circus show” with acrobatic elements (including Chinese acrobats) on a marketing stand point for the Chinese audience members I spoke with in-line felt that combined with the reputation of the House of Dancing Water venue and that it wasn’t just an acrobatics show seemed to be a swaying point to attend Dragone’s show over Soleil’s.
House of Dancing Water is show cased in an extraordinarily unique venue. As mentioned before it also has the reputation of the most expensive shows in China, giving it a luxury status; an extremely important value in a developing Chinese culture. In addition, the emphasis on the appearance of home-grown (although the company is not Chinese owned, the show was built and developed in Macau) would, therefore, make it difficult for Cirque de Soleil to compete against it. Even with its glowing international reputation and its custom designed theater. This part of my observation is contrary to my previous opinions of Chinese audiences and their perceived love of luxury western products and services. Perhaps it is demonstrative of a new developing consumer?
In summary, each show, in its own right, is fantastic and I would thoroughly recommend seeing them both. It seems, however, that Dragone has the edge on the marketing mix and producing elements to create a sold out show for Chinese audiences. Both shows will certainly stay in my memory as incredible performances. This Circus Girl now understands that there is a whole lot more to achieving a full house and audience appeal in a foreign market. ?
It’s 8:30 pm and we are both exhausted from the training day, I can see he’s nervous about giving an interview especially to a Westerner. It’s a hot, sticky Beijing night. The Chinese acrobats and arts students are just leaving their night training sessions and classes.
“My Chinese name is Hou Kai. My English name Kai.”
Photograph by Faith Wassmann
I first met Hou Kai a year ago while training as a part of a professional development towards my own skills as an acrobat at the Beijing International Arts School, home of The China National Acrobatic Troupe. He’s a handsome young man, stylish and has an air of grace about him. Charismatic and unlike most of the young men here, not shy around a western girl. Hou Kai is one of two children in his family making him even more unusual in China’s one child policy.
“I started training with the Shaolin [monks] in martial arts when I was five years old. I changed to study acrobatics at seven.” It surprised me to hear that he liked training (most of the time), even though it was his parents that chose his path. In my experience and conversations many acrobats here at the school do not love what they do. Their path was chosen for them or in lieu of another sport; the training in China is extremely difficult by any world standard. Early mornings, long days and late nights, 6-7 days a week. It is also highly controlled. Your teacher (or Lao shi) owns your time, your pain and your progress. Although Hunan is his hometown, Hou Kai moved to Beijing at 10 years old where he specialized in Chinese pole and Acrobatics. It was at this time that he started performing with the China National Acrobatic Troupe. From as early as 11 he toured with the Troupe to the US, Turkey, Germany, Japan and Greece. When I asked him his favorite country he told me it was Greece, because of its history, philosophers, athletes and the sea. He traveled with both The China National Acrobatic Troupe and as part of smaller troupes, as a guest in foreign countries. It is very unusual but Hou Kai has a working passport and a personal passport as a result of one of the smaller shows (some countries require Chinese visitors to have a personal and a working passport), which means he can travel quite freely unlike his classmates.
At 15 Hou Kai blew out both his ACL’s – what would be a game ender for most acrobats in China. He remembers that day and how much he cried. He loved tumbling but needed an operation. This was the end of tumbling for him in the Troupe. The scar tissue in both legs is thick. For over 3 years he has dragged himself to the second floor of our training building at the school to retrain new acts so that he could perform. No teachers, no directors, no help. Just sheer will and a little inspiration. This is how I met him: 6:00 am classes, training and studying every morning until final class at 8:30 pm – including weekends. Finally, after all this time, he has started to tumble again. Although he tells me he has trouble on colder days. His regular program consists of bounce juggling, hat juggling and manipulation, and of course (one of the circus disciplines China is famous for) Diabolo. He also loves to dance. “I want to make my own style in my own way; I want to be someone like Michael Jackson.”
Hou Kai says he likes the spirit and for him (and many other Chinese) Michael Jackson represents freedom of the spirit, a miracle or inspiration. In broken English he tells me, “My parents ask me do you like Michael Jackson? Michael Jackson is not of your age. When I first saw Michael Jackson I am in the injury home [hospital], I don’t know what I can do [anymore]. I think it’s a power. I can do most things. I felt life. My Father Mother don’t like me to like this. I see his power. I think can do these most things.”
It has finally come for Hou Kai to leave the school after nearly 9 years. The current captain of the school does not like his program – or him for that matter – which means that Hou Kai is unable to work in the regular shows that the Troupe puts on for tourists. Fortunately, Hou Kai’s English is better than average which he says gives him freedom in a way. “Freedom” is a word that he has used often throughout our conversation.
He says he is leaving this month, and will continue to study and work on his programs. He doesn’t know where he’s going yet. He has not been to another city in 3 years because of his injury. He says he has no fear but he’s not sure, though he believes hard work will get him there. Finding work in China for a solo acrobat is a relentless task. “It’s important to always have a spirit for study and work hard.” Something, it appears, has already served him well.