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REVIEW: Circus Vegas in Inverness had me looking like an emoji for about two hours!

By Andrew Dixon

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Anna Oliinyk. Picture: James Mackenzie.
Anna Oliinyk. Picture: James Mackenzie.

Wow! What else is there to say but wow? Such a short word, yet it perfectly sums up Circus Vegas.

From start to finish, it was something special – and I anyone looking at me could have mistaken me for one of those wee reaction emojis on Facebook!

Every performer gave everything they had to prompt emotion from the audience whether that was awe or laughter, and the mesmerising talent lived off those responses.

The opening show in their Inverness stint was the perfect way to start the summer break for my kids but the packed audience was a mix of ages – not just families. There were even a group of American tourists on the row behind us enjoying the jaw-dropping entertainment.

The mind-boggling action started with a high-wire display where Duo Alambria used a range of props – including a bicycle – and even balanced on each other while walking along the tightrope.

Vera Kaijanen. Picture: James Mackenzie.
Vera Kaijanen. Picture: James Mackenzie.

It set the tone for several examples of exhilarating aerial displays and incredible athleticism.

Music played its part throughout, helping add suspense as performers sold their situations to the crowd. There's no doubt they'll have finely tuned their actions through thousands of repetitions but there's no room for complacency or lack of focus when it comes to delivering perfection.

The artistic excellence was inspirational – I know this because my wee ones were trying to replicate some of the gymnastics and dancing when they got home. Thankfully they didn't try any of the more high-risk content... yet!

The dance troupe and Edy the Clown punctuated the show, often either acting as a distraction while stagehands refreshed arrangements in the ring or to help introduce the next act. Edy brought audience participation and laughter, while the glitz and glam of the dancers – who had probably the most outfit changes of the night – encapsulated the Vegas theme, although at one point they did appear in tartan.

Dancers bring glitz and glam. Picture: James Mackenzie.
Dancers bring glitz and glam. Picture: James Mackenzie.

Several individual displays took the circus skills such as hula hoops and juggling (activities I've seen at family fun days and music festivals like Belladrum) to beyond the next level.

Among my personal favourites were the rollerskating duo where the woman ended up spinning in the air while attached to a strap connected to her male colleague. There were similar aerial twisters including a fire eater. Then there was the incredible Didyk Troupe from Ukraine using swings to fire them through the air.

The extreme stunts came to a spectacular climax with the Globe of Death. A trio of daredevil riders performed loops both vertically and horizontally in the spherical cage accompanied by ooos and aaahs from those brave enough to watch.

There’s no doubt everyone on the roster must be dedicated to their craft in order to have the expertise to deliver seemingly faultless performances throughout.

Some of the Circus Vegas performers. Picture: James Mackenzie.
Some of the Circus Vegas performers. Picture: James Mackenzie.

Circus Vegas will be at the car park outside Caledonian Stadium in Inverness until July 4, before moving on to visit Aberdeen (Queens Links) on July 6-23.

The show runs for around two hours in a theatre-style circus Big Top, climate-controlled and with comfortable seating.

To avoid disappointment, you should purchase your tickets in advance through the Circus Vegas box office by calling 07494 774008 or 07494 774009 or you can book your tickets online at www.circusvegasuk.com or ticketmaster.co.uk

There is a range of times and dates available for their Inverness performances, so you have plenty of opportunity to watch the action with family and friends:

June 30: 5pm and 7.45pm

July 1: 2pm, 5pm and 7.45pm

July 2: 2pm and 5pm

July 3: 3pm and 7.45pm

July 4: noon and 3pm

Vera Kaijanen. Picture: James Mackenzie.
Vera Kaijanen. Picture: James Mackenzie.

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