Blog Barbu @ Sydney Opera House Studio

Barbu @ Sydney Opera House Studio

Posted Feb. 28, 2017, 7:39 p.m. by T

Advertisement
KFAI - Undead

Barbu by Cirque Alfonse
Sydney Opera House Studio
Sydney, AU
February 26, 2017

Needless to say that the mélange the troupe of Cirque Alfonse, with all its Québécois folklore, brings to the table as a collective is much bigger than its individual parts added up.


Barbu (which translates to “bearded” or “bearded man” – quite a telling name) the company’s 2015 Edinburgh Fringe hit, is performed on a small circular stage and catwalk and delves into the origins of the circus in Montreal at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century.

Think acrobatic vaudeville and burlesque comedy.

The troupe, comprised of five gentlemen and two female protagonists, introduces itself with non-stop routines agile and daring feats of balance and strength, utilizing an array of props including teeterboards, hoops and balls, poles, roller-skates, and whatever one can juggle with in the most contorted and seemingly impossible way.

As the show goes on, the intricacy and sweat inducing physicality of each feat becomes increasingly intense, with loads of shenanigans, unpretentiously camp humour and audience interaction thrown in for good measure to keep the mood light and fast paced.

The pace of the show is enhanced by all protagonists constantly involved: The four men (Jean-Philippe Cuerrier, Francis Roberge, Jonathan Casaubon and Antoine Carabinier Lepine) get few breathers in this interval-free 90-minute show.

Barbu’s women – aerialist Genevieve Gauthier and acrobat Genevieve Morin might have less of a presence, though deliver superb performances when in the spotlight.

The action is serenaded by an entertaining live musical soundtrack courtesy of a three-piece electro-folk band led by singer-guitarist Andre Gagne, whose circus rave adds spice when things get kinky in the second half of the show, e.g. when Lepine appears as a human disco ball circling in a Cyr wheel or when beer kegs are juggled in underwear.

What makes Barbu a fun night out is that the troupe works as a family based collective: There is an esprit de corps that enriches the physical acts, which is further enhanced by the artists mingling with the audience.

One can tell that the protagonists are not merely re-enacting their bits but have been involved in the development from the get go and take pride in it.

---

Photos by KAVV

Leave a comment
Share this content

Other recent blogs

Spring Loaded Festival 2021

Posted by T
May 9, 2021, 9:07 a.m.

Spring Loaded Racecourse Randwick Sydney, Australia May 8, 2021 Australia continues to see 2021 bringing back a sense of normalcy, with live shows becoming more regular occurrences and bigger music ... read more

Water of Life – Ester Spirits

Posted by T
May 8, 2021, 2:33 p.m.

Water of Life – Ester Spirits The mushrooming of gin distilleries on terra australis has been thoroughly documented over the last couple of years and while quality as well as ... read more

The Formative Years – Blut + Eisen

Posted by T
May 4, 2021, 8:07 p.m.

The Formative Years – Blut + Eisen   It was in the second half of the seventeenth century that the President of Prussia, i.e. Otto von Bismarck, concluded a speech ... read more

Water of Life – Launceston Distillery

Posted by T
May 3, 2021, 8:52 p.m.

Water of Life – Launceston Distillery   Our coverage of the Tasmanian whiskey landscape have mainly been focussed on Hobart and its surroundings, which could be perceived as one of ... read more

High Adventures in the Great Outdoors – Lonely Pla

Posted by T
May 2, 2021, 11:30 a.m.

High Adventures in the Great Outdoors – Lonely Planet   It has been almost fifty years since Lonely Planet was incepted, following Maureen and Tony Wheeler’s trip across Europe, Asia ... read more

Advertisement
KFAI - Root Of All Evil
x

Logo

Looking for the SPB logo? You can download it in a range of styles and colours here:

Click anywhere outside this dialog to close it, or press escape.