REVIEW: Circolombia, Underbelly Festival

Felicity Simpson directs this wonderfully contemporary vision of circus, revealing how it can adapt to suit audiences of all ages. 

Circolombia%27s Franco%2c Sandra%2c Cesar and Jarrinson perform the Perch at the Underbelly Festival Southbank (c) The Other Richard.jpg
(c) The Other Richard. 

Everything about Circolombia feels like a celebration thanks to a strong combination of dancing, music and song mixed with the strength and the versatility of the performers that make for awe inspiring viewing.

As the image above shows, this is a show that is confident and bold in its ambition, making what should seem impossible possible (but obviously shouldn’t be attempted at home!). But beyond this it is spirited, thoughtful and showcases how circus in 2018 has adapted to suit audiences in 2018 with its use of contemporary dancing and music to create something that is richly engaging from beginning to end.

Throughout, as the performers fling themselves (sometimes quite literally) into the air there is a gracefulness to each act, particularly highlighted in Cristian David Trivino Rincon and Laura Lucia Llordea Martinez’s beautifully choreographed ariel act that almost appears as though you are watching a ballet in the air.

But there is also a great street party or festival vibe to the show that is infectious that really gets the audience involved as  Juan David Campo Teran and Wilmer Andres Martinez increasingly jump higher and twist and turn in the air prove – it is cheeky, playful and a joy to watch.

However, at times it did feel as though the show isn’t quite as slick as it could be as the transitions between acts show. It could also be said that the show is filled with more dance and singing rather than circus acts which means at times the audience are in danger of losing concentration – but there is no denying that it is still infectious and easy to enjoy.

Circolombia is certainly a show that celebrates diversity and culture, really highlighting the power of circus in bringing people together for at least an hour and you leave the show with a spring in your step. It is safe to say that the future of circus is safe with acts like Circolombia around.

Circolombia continues to perform as part of the Underbelly Festival until the 14th July. For more information visit:

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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