Review: Circus Abyssinia: The Ethiopian jugglers living the dream at Londons Underbelly ★★★



By Peter May

It sounds likes something out of a storybook involving two young boys living on the streets who both dream of running away to join the circus. A talented and very supple cast of 14 certainly get the audience going.

A very slick soundtrack of cheery African music along Lion King lines creates a sense of occasion from the start, as do the 10 fine performers who achieve dazzling acrobatic gymnastics, tossing off somersaults while being tossed about themselves, and culminating in a towering three-man stack.

Two serpentine contortionists quite literally stretch the term – arching their backs and joints at incredible angles. In due course four did, well, more, while spinning cloths from hands and feet. However the clown character shoed in to keep kids entertained in the audience slightly overstays his welcome.

A ladder number added a frisson of excitement, and a terrific pole climbing routine climaxing with no fewer than eight men aloft was an impressive finale. The sheer excitement and happiness that emanates from each performer is enough to provide an entertaining show.

Until 20th May, Underbelly