Inside Udderbelly's inverted purple cow on the South Bank, the seven acrobats of award-winning Australian circus company Gravity and Other Myths will amaze you with their awesome feats of strength, agility and balance.
This is circus at its most raw and elemental, stripped bare of distracting costumes, lighting, props and even safety nets. Everything the performers do, they do mostly with their own bodies, and it is truly breathtaking. Prepare to see circus made effortless, even though you see the sweat and hear the hard breathing of the performers. This is pure circus, and it is brilliant.
The stage — a small, square space — places the performers in close intimacy with the audience, even more so as the performance progresses. There were many intakes of breath as the performers seemed to hurl themselves over and out into the audience during their acts. The audience is also encouraged to interact with the performers, at one point showering them with colourful balls in a rainbow explosion. The performances are witty and exhibit a joyful sense of playfulness, driven by percussive music.
The roughly-hour-long performance packs a lot in — expect gravity-defying balancing, comedic interludes, human-skipping ropes, precarious human pyramids and other constructions, death-defying aerial balancing and dives at tremendous height (without any high-level platforms, we might add), music made only using the body, and a Rubik's cube solved at high speed upside down. The performances demonstrate the incredible capacity and athleticism of the human body. This is one circus performance that you should not miss.
Gravity and Other Myths' A Simple Space continues at the Udderbelly Festival until 6 July. Tickets are £12.50, £16.50 and £18 and can be booked on-line at the Udderbelly Festival website or by phone at 0844 545 8282.