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9 Amazing Circus Festivals Worldwide

If you love circus festivals and travel, you’ve come to the right place. In the last two years, both were either not possible at all or only possible to a limited extent, but this year many festivals were able to welcome visitors live again for the first time and circus artists were able to share their wonderful skills with the world again. From the Ruhr area to Canada, here are nine great circus festivals not to be missed.


Edinburgh Fringe

 

One of the most famous festivals for the performing arts, the Edinburgh Fringe Festival is not to be missed on this list. It takes place annually in August and celebrated its 75th anniversary this year. Whether you like theatre, dance, comedy, music, or circus, there’s something for everyone at the Fringe Festival. This year, among others, our friends from Circa Contemporary Circus performed their piece Humans 2.0 at the festival.

Go to the website: https://www.edfringe.com/

 

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Berlin Circus Festival

 

This festival for contemporary circus takes place at Tempelhofer Feld in Berlin. Over 10 days, a wide variety of special circus pieces are presented on the festival grounds. With two tents, an accompanying art exhibition, special programmes, and wonderful food and drink, this event is absolutely worth a visit for circus fans. After a two-year break, the summer edition of the Berlin Circus Festival was able to return this year in August, with performances by Compagnie du Chaos and Familiar Faces, among others.

Go to the website: https://www.berlin-circus-festival.de/

 

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Atoll Festival

 

The Atoll Festival will take place in the cultural centre TollHaus Karlsruhe this year from 15 – 25 September with about 100 artists from 12 nations. The main themes of this year’s festival are intergenerational exchange, concern for resources, and the relationship between people and objects. The numerous performances will take place in the halls, tents, and outdoors on the grounds, with performances by world-renowned artists as well as newcomers and up-and-coming talents. On 21 September, there will also be the first public work-in-progress presentation of this year’s Zirkus ON projects, a creative alliance that we are co-supporting as a partner.

Go to the website: https://www.tollhaus.de/de/214/atoll.html

 

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St. John’s International Circus Fest

 

Have you always wanted to take a trip to Newfoundland? Then now’s your chance, because from 21 – 25 September 2022 the St. John’s International Circus Fest will take place there with the theme “Circus at the Edge of the World”. With innovative performances, interactive industry panels, keynote speakers, and workshops, this festival offers an exciting programme for circus fans and a great networking opportunity for the international professional audience. This year’s programme includes our award-winning contemporary circus piece Raven by Still Hungry.

Go to the website: https://www.stjohnscircusfest.com/

 

Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain

 

This world-renowned circus festival brings together performers from all over the world and is a prestigious springboard for young circus talent. Unfortunately, this year the Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain in Paris had to be cancelled, but it will be held again at Cirque Phénix from 26 to 29 January 2023. The festival was last held in 2020 and the Troupe Municipale de Guangzhou was awarded the Grand Prix.

Go to the website: https://www.cirquededemain.paris/en/

 

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Ruhr Festival Recklinghausen

 

The Ruhrfestspiele is one of the oldest, largest, and most renowned theatre festivals in Europe. The 75th anniversary of the festival started digitally in 2021 due to the Corona pandemic and was accompanied in Recklinghausen with an open-air exhibition of photographs of the audience from the last 75 years.
This year, the festival was able to go live from the beginning and we were especially happy to celebrate the premiere of Julieta, a piece we co-produced with the Ruhrfestspiele and TOHU Montréal, as part of the Festival. The Ruhrfestspiel begins annually on 1 May and ends in mid-June.

Go to the website: https://www.ruhrfestspiele.de/

 

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Young Stage Basel

 

The YOUNG STAGE International Circus Festival in Basel is both a competition and a fantastic networking opportunity for young professional artists. During the six public performances, an international jury judges the young artists and awards numerous prizes and engagements. At this year’s edition of YOUNG STAGE, Isis Clegg-Vinell, Cornelius Atkinson, and Nathan Price from the UK were awarded the Golden Star for their Hand to Trapeze performance. In 2023, the YOUNG STAGE International Circus Festival will take place from 11 – 15 May.

Go to the website: https://www.young-stage.com/




CircusDance Festival

 

The CircusDance Festival in Cologne offers a multi-faceted programme of contemporary circus and dance. The programme is enriched by international university projects, residency programmes, promotion of young talent as well as digital projects and publications. VOICES magazine, published by the festival, brings together international perspectives on writing, thinking, and speaking in and about circus. This year’s issue was published as a preview of the workbook “Circus in flux – Contemporary Circus”, published in cooperation with “Theater der Zeit”. Next year’s CircusDance Festival will take place from 25 – 29 May.

Go to the website: https://circus-dance-festival.de/

 

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Montréal Complètement Cirque

 

This international festival is one of the most important contemporary circus festivals in the world and has been held every year since 2010 for 11 days in the summer. For 11 days, the streets, pavements, parks, and venues of Montréal become one giant venue for circus artists from all over the world. Workshops, panel discussions, and pitching sessions make Complètement Cirque a fixed date in the calendar of international promoters and producers. Next year, the Montréal Complètement Cirque Festival is already scheduled for July 6-16.

Go to the website: https://montrealcompletementcirque.com/fr/

 

 

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We hope you find an exciting festival near you and discover many inspiring circus performances. You can also satisfy your circus appetite all year round at the Chamäleon in Berlin…