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  • REVIEW | Circa’s Peepshow | Chamäleon Theatre – Berlin
Circa's Peepshow - Chamäleon Theatre, Berlin. Photo credit: Andy Phillips

REVIEW | Circa’s Peepshow | Chamäleon Theatre – Berlin

For a city rich in culture, in the heart of Berlin lies the exquisite Chamäleon Theatre, home to some of the world’s finest contemporary circus.

Australian company Circa bring a new dynamic to the Chamäleon Theatre who are renowned for presenting the highest quality contemporary circus to their stage. Peepshow is a playful, moving and inspiring piece of circus that seduces the audiences into a world of wonder.

The ChamäleonTheatre is a stunning art deco space that is bursting with character. Walking through the doors and up the grand staircase into the historic ballroom with tables and chairs scattered around the floor for audiences to enjoy and relax in. With candles lighting the room and waiter service for drinks and delicious food, it’s a real theatrical experience. As one of the most beautiful theatres I’ve ever visited, despite the glorious traditional architecture, the programming is exciting, fresh and unique.  

This production breaks new boundaries for the ChamäleonTheatre as this provocative show tests the performer’s bodies in showstopping circus that quite literally has you on the edge of your seat.

Opening on a dark stage, the cacophony of lights, shadows and smoke creates an atmospheric opening. We witness the performers tangle their bodies around one another and showcase their remarkable contortion, flexibility and strength. With mesmerising aerial hoops and mind-blowing lifts performed with immense vibrancy, it’s a truly spellbinding performance.

Unlike anything I’ve seen at the Chamäleon Theatre before, this production blends the artistry of circus, contemporary dance, burlesque and even comedy to create a real spectacle. The cast of seven twist and tumble as the audience gasp in awe of their miraculous ability. With beautiful chemistry, you instantly warm to the cast as they interact with the audience with humour and flair.

 

Circa's Peepshow - Chamäleon Theatre, Berlin. Photo credit: Andy Phillips
Circa’s Peepshow – Chamäleon Theatre, Berlin. Photo credit: Andy Phillips

 

The themes of the show centre around the the idea of ‘looking.’ The show invites us to discover the wonderful, bizarre mirror room of our imaginations. Asking us ‘How do we see?” “What does it mean to be watched?” and “What happens when we feel entirely unobserved?” The show uses a series of contrast and juxtaposition, as it leaps from an enthralling silent movement to a high-energy party-style atmosphere, the audience are really taken on an adventure.

It’s all about the performers’ bodies in this production, as their striking physical movement is paired with typical peepshow comedy. The second act takes a real turn as the cast return in multi-coloured glitter hot pants to mirror the sparkling stage background. We feel as if we have been transported into a trippy, transfixing club that hypnotises the audience into a kaleidoscope of bright lights and pulsating movement.

 

Circa's Peepshow - Chamäleon Theatre, Berlin. Photo credit: Andy Phillips
Circa’s Peepshow – Chamäleon Theatre, Berlin. Photo credit: Andy Phillips

 

I’m always in awe of the capability of the cast the Chamäleon Theatre bring to their stage. It’s inspiring to watch them use every inch of their physical strength to perform with such expression. However, it’s Jessica Connell that really steals the show with her extraordinary skill and talent. She has created an act involving numerous hula hoops that is seriously breath-taking and her movement is simply magical. The way she moves her body with such ease appears almost effortless and her solo moments on stage are profoundly memorable.

Circa’s Peepshow is an intimate and striking piece of contemporary circus that combines exhilarating skill and radiant performance to create an astounding evening of theatre. If you’re heading for a cultured weekend in Berlin – you don’t want to miss Circa’s Peepshow.

★★★★★

Circa’s Peepshow is on at the Chamäleon Theatre in Berlin, tickets and information can be found online here.

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