Remember, parents out there. If you don’t bring your kids to the circus, don’t buy them a bicycle or don’t allow them to play videogames, they’ll grow up to ride a unicycle, make videogames and join the circus.
I’m really more familiar with theatrical circuses; the modern Cirque du Soleil and similar story-driven circuses. This might be the first time I’m actually at the equivalent of the Big Top and I love it.
I think there are different shows through the year but the circus is a permanent fixture where the most expensive tickets go for something like US$20. It was Children’s Day when I went but I still managed to get seats 4 rows from the front.
The show started with some musical numbers where highly irrelevant people came out masked and in dressed for Carnival. The whole purpose of this seem to be to waste time while water flows out from the back and fills the whole arena.
There was a few other time-wasting acts including a bird tamer dressed as “Captain Jack Sparrow” (geddit? sparrow? bird? haw haw haw) who got some macaws to ride bicycles, fly around and whatnot. I think he screwed up the end of his act though because the birds refused to return when called and he looked quite pissed about that.
The resident juggler was Mongolian and his act included a 6 or 7 ball routine but I was completely distracted from it all by a midget with a strap-on gondola running around in the moat while playing some stringed instrument. If I ever have a juggling act, I will remember to request for a midget musician sidekick.
Most of the aerial artists and contortionists were probably from Mongolia because later on, the same juggler would return to stage with a horse guitar (I don’t know what exactly it’s called in English) and indulge in some Mongolian throat-singing. If you don’t know what that is, you should head over to YouTube NOW and search for it. It’s the kind of sound you’d never expect to be possible from humankind.
By the time I’m slack-jawed and contemplating (again) learning to trapeze, this guy comes out. The show just gets better and better.
After the intermission where crew members scurry around to drain the water and fix up tall metal grills, the real show begins and animals take the stage. First, some tigers behaving like dogs.
Because this is a circus aimed at kids, there were more kiddy favorites. Like elephants. Remember that scene from Dumbo where Jumbo (his mom) was shown in a tender moment while that tear-jerker of a song, Baby Mine was playing in the background?
You’ll be thinking “WTF did I just watch??” but that’s just appetizers. In the penultimate act, some indian snake charmer takes the stage with a few really fat pythons as belly dancers gyrate. The misbehaving macaws were probably fed to these guys because these are really huge thick pythons we’re talking about.
That’s not all though. The dude then opens his crate and drags out a crocodile by the tail. There wasn’t much of an act to all these chaos, just a lot of moving the reptiles around forcibly by their rears.
If you think this can’t be topped, it gets better still. The theme to Jurassic Park starts playing at some point and some guy in a T-Rex costume comes running out and around.
By the time the show ended, I think I can safely say that I’ve never had a better use for my $20. Hallucinogens aren’t even as big a mindfuck as this.
Best. Circus. Ever.