Melbourne Fringe 2011

The Contortion and Hand-balancing Spectacular!

0 Comments 09 October 2011

Stepping off Chapel St and climbing up the stairs to Red Bennies is like going into another world. Red light shines everywhere, candles and cocktails sit on small tables upstairs and there is a small stage that looks like it was transported out of the set of The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus.

Red Bennies isn’t the circus by any stretch but through shows such as The Contortion and Hand-balancing Spectacular! it can give you a small one-hour long taste.

Starting 15 minutes late, the exuberant female host Giuseppe came out revving the crowd up before getting the show started and calling out the performers.

I didn’t expect to be particularly impressed by the acts but I was. There were many highlights, a teenage girl hand balancing, lifting her entire body up and balancing on one arm, legs moving around even touching her own head. Audience members on either side lent forward in amazement as well as awkwardness that she would fall, but she didn’t. Meanwhile I was pretending to stretch seeing if I could even touch my toes.

There was young aerial contortionist Mim Conyers, swinging around almost touching audience members, performing to the song Life on Mars.

There was a dance-a-thon with the host and a man Joe plucked out of the audience that went on too long, which had you wondering whether they were running out of acts.

But they weren’t, where some of us might find it tough to even complete a dance act well, Jacinta Rohan can do it while spinning a hula hoop on her toes.

At Red Bennies, make sure to get in early, the seating is impractical with a number of benches near the stage and limited seating upstairs. For the 90 or so people that were there, there wasn’t room for everyone.

If you don’t want to splurge going to Circ du Soleil, or see something unusual then this could be for you.

It might even have you trying to touch your toes.

Another Contortion and Hand-Balancing Spectacular! different performers will show on Saturday the 8th of October at 7pm at Red Bennies.

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