Strut & Fret return to the Gold Coast this April and May with award-nominated circus cabaret sensation, LIMBO Unhinged.
Bleach* The Gold Coast Festival 2019 has collaborated with the creators of sassy sensation Blanc de Blanc to bring Gold Coast audiences yet another edge-of-your-seat spectacle featuring an international cast of performers who are all set to dazzle the Spiegeltent crowds with their curious talents. We were lucky enough to grab a few minutes with hand-to-hand expert Charlotte O’Sullivan in the middle of a hectic rehearsal schedule.
Your specialties include hand-to-hand, banquine, and singing. First of all, for the uninitiated, can tell us what hand-to-hand and banquine are, and do you have a favourite skill to perform?
Despite not coming from an acrobatic gymnastics background, a sport in which the gymnasts perform two man balancing and acrobatic stunts together… I later learned how to do all of that in my six years of circus school in Montreal. My partner Nico and I created a more emotional piece by fusing the concept with dance in a more “so you think you can dance” contemporary style acrobatic dance. For those who want to get a better idea of what I do, you could maybe imagine a figure skating duo without ice or skates where the man throws the girl around in the most seemingly impossible ways, haha!
I don’t think I have a favourite trick… although we certainly have a repertoire together for doing some very original moves such as our spinning sequences standing with my feet in his hands and where he turns me in multiple twists landing back perfectly in his hands or gracefully to my feet on the floor. We have some other crowd pleasers such as multiple moves where I drop into a catch upside down with my head inches away from the floor! And of course the audience loves when they see me doing a one arm handstand on Nico’s head.
Have you experienced any injuries during your career?
I have had some minor bumps and bruises along the way – knock on wood – but I do my best to listen to my body, strengthen my weak points and stretch out the stiff areas. So I’ve been pretty good!
What drew you from gymnastics to circus?
Definitely the performance aspect to start. It wasn’t about the cookie cutter moves for me in gym, it was all about the dance and expression. I figured out at a young age I wasn’t gonna be the best, but it showed at competitions that I was always winning special awards for best presentation on floor even if I wasn’t bringing home medals towards the end. The other girls at the club used to get excited when I ran my routine, they liked to sit and watch because of the way I moved, it wasn’t like a typical gymnast so I knew I needed a different kind of stage- little did I know I’d spontaneously audition for a circus school a few years later.
The rest of the international cast features Coney Island’s sword swallower and vintage beauty, Heather Holliday (USA), gravity-defying Chinese Pole and beatboxing master Mikael Bres (FRA), hand balancing extraordinaire Antonio Montiel (SPA), dancing sensation Hilton Denis (AUS), aerial sensation Marco Motta (BRA), hand to hand experts Nicolas Jelmoni (MCO), alongside the acrobatic expertise of Rémi Martin Lenz (GER).
Prolific Sydney musician Mick Stuart (AUS) will lead the live ensemble, performing haunting ethereal melodies, irreverent electro-acoustic noise and playfully, sexy beats, composed exclusively by New York’s Jank maestro Sxip Shirey (USA).
LIMBO Unhinged will run in the Spiegeltent Broadbeach from 17 April to 12 May. Tickets are on sale now from spiegeltentgoldcoast.com. Keep an eye on Blank GC’s social media channels towards the end of March for your chance to win one of a heap of double passes to the show.
IMAGE (c) Prudence Upton