This year Circus Oz Artistic Director, Rob Tannion, along with a new diverse acrobatic ensemble, are fired up to launch the latest touring Circus Oz show, Model Citizens – blending the risk and beauty of breathtaking physical improbability with theatricality, choreography and Circus Oz’s distinct brand of Australian humour.
Stunningly lit and driven by a sensational live music soundtrack, Model Citizens unfolds within a cleverly designed model-kit world that challenges perspective, scale and concepts of normality. Over-sized, everyday objects are used as unexpected circus equipment that create an intriguing new playground for the all-human ensemble.
Acrobats will back-flip off a giant vertical clothes peg, become tangled in an oversized cotton reel, roll bowling balls haphazardly, unzip giant zippers, balance on a house of oversized collapsing cards and fly high in an enormous pair of aerial undies!
Exposing circus skills in unconventional ways, Model Citizens will present stunning group acrobatics with a twist: a ten-pin roué cyr act, quirky ball juggling, diving through giant scissors, hard-core hula-hoops and pyjama escapism.
Following a three-month tour through Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland, Model Citizens will be the annual Melbourne winter highlight as it has its Circus Oz Big Top premiere in Birrarung Marr, supported by the City of Melbourne.
For the Circus Oz Big Top premiere, Tannion will create a specially crafted season of Model Citizens on a larger scale filling the generous dimensions of the tent and expanding the ensemble with four new artists.
Blending his background in dance and choreography Tannion is captivated by the theatrical space the Circus Oz Big Top offers, “I’m keen to adapt Circus Oz shows to suit the different site specific possibilities – the tent creates a unique performance space and I am also working with more artists to create new opportunities to collaborate and develop the circus artform for the benefit of our audiences.”
Artistic team: Rob Tannion (concept and artistic direction), Laurel Frank (costume design), Michael Baxter (production design), Sian James-Holland (lighting design), Ania Reynolds (musical direction), Ryan Taplin (rigging design), Tim Coldwell (senior circus artist), Sebastien Pasche and Mitch Jones (provocateurs), Cath Carmody (stage manager) and Vince van Berkel (associate artist and ensemble trainer).
Creative collaborating artists: Ania Reynolds (musician), Freyja Edney, Jake Silvestro, Jarred Dewey, Jeremy Hopkins (musician), Luke Ha, Mitch Jones (aka Captain Ruin), Olivia Porter, Roseanne Chalker-McGann and Steph Moaut.
Model Citizens is a visually and emotionally charged journey by the multi-talented Circus Oz ensemble, which audaciously unpacks the myths of modern Australia and exploring what it really means to be a model citizen in the ‘lucky’ country today.
Model Citizens – tour dates
Dandenong (24 – 25 March); Ballarat (31 March – 1 April); Shepparton (8 April); Brisbane (12 – 15 April); Townsville (20 – 21 April); Rockhampton (26 April); Mackay (29 – 30 April); Gold Coast (10 May); Lismore (12 – 13 May); Wyong (19 – 20 May); Penrith (26 – 27 May); Griffith (31 May); and Wagga Wagga (2 – 3 June).
Model Citizens – Melbourne Big Top premiere
Birrarung Marr, Melbourne (between Federation Square and Batman Avenue)
Season: 20 June – 16 July 2017
For more information, visit: www.circusoz.com for details.
Image: Circus Oz Model Citizens – photo by Rob Blackburn