Andrea Ousley from NICA (the National Institute of Circus Arts) in Australia offers some insights from observing a different way of working with the youth performance group at Tsirkusestuudio Folie (Estonia)
While visiting Estonia I observed a methodology that inspires a strong creative energy within the performance troupe. This troupe meets several times a week and they participate in a number of different styles of workshops. They participate in circus skills, which might include adagio, pitching and tumbling. The next night they had a different coach who offered an acrobatics and strength /conditioning class. Then another night the were exploring improvisation in a more movement style class. All of these different classes give the student’s strong physical skills and then the opportunity to explore those skills in a performance. The opportunity to meet several that times a week means they have a strong sense of connectedness and a robust sense of ensemble. As circus performers we need to have a strong sense of timing and the fact these young performers get to work together so often, this is something that has definitely developed within this group. I also appreciated that they worked with many different coaches, all having different styles, ways of working which again extends the abilities and skills of this troupe.