Contemporary dance, physical theatre, and circus swirl together at The Lafayette big top at Underbelly’s circus venue as ten acrobats explore their bodies and each other in Circa: Humans. Through a series of short vignettes, director Yaron Lifschitz and company, explore the ways humans struggle, connect, crash, control, love, laugh, and move through life. Humans at its core, is about isolating the most basic of human experiences.
Fearlessly sculpted by a cast that lays bare its strength, precision, and honesty.
The opening sequence, a dancer struggling to strip out of the clothes that bind her, clues us in that the audience is going to see life at its simplest, most raw form. We see her contort and push and struggle in way that is both human and superhuman at the same time. Through the early sequences we see humans crashing, sliding, and seemingly even going through one another in death defying acrobatic feats that will make your own stomach tense with anticipation. The company is seemingly able to manipulate time with their bodies. Sometimes gracefully suspended before they crash to the mat below and other times seemingly floating just above the ground as they travel through space. From the opening clashing of flesh we flow seamlessly through time as we visit moments of connection and struggle. Of particular note, is a joyous moment of love and determination where the cast attempt to lick their own elbows. The cast flits about with the joy of a child and makes you wonder what does that really feel like? In opposition a human rag doll is made to move in ways that seem to be beyond the realm of the possibility. Her blank face staring at the audience as your manipulator intensely focuses crafting each precisely planned tilt and stretch.
As we move through each vignette we see the humans become even stronger and more trusting as the Circa ensemble begin to stack higher and wider, mover faster, all the while seemingly moving seamlessly together. At one point there are five humans stacked on top of one. Proving that we all are capable of feats beyond belief.
The performance is fearlessly sculpted by a cast that lays bare its strength, precision, and honesty. Humans shows us that life is not about being a sole body struggling alone, but rather about connecting with others in ways we never thought possible.