Elixir

Feel-good zombie capers with Aussie circus trio

★★★
dance review | Read in About 2 minutes
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Elixir
Published 19 Aug 2017

By 10:15pm, the Circus Hub spiegeltent has a distinct air of sweat about it. As most of the audience seem to be here, however, to enjoy the sweat-drenched muscles of the Head First Acrobats trio, this doesn't appear to be a problem. Cal Harris, Thomas Gorham and Rowan Thomas know it too, playing up their pecs and bulging their biceps to an appreciative crowd as they take us through the zombie outbreak story that frames their tricks.

A series of experiments with "body enhancing elixirs" give Dr Wolfgang Kunstmann and his bumbling assistants super strength and extra agility—or lead to inebriation in an impressively clowned Cyr wheel routine from Thomas. The three have solid acrobatic ability and comic awareness, but Thomas's comedy chops far outweigh those of his companions. Gorham makes a truly freaky zombie—with some brilliant breakdancing moves to boot—and Harris is happy to play the perfect eye-candy hunk. If you saw the show last year, you'll notice the structure feels sloppier, although the intimate venue allows for more effective interaction and engagement.

This is a frivolous hour—if they manage to keep to time—but somehow the combination of horror and humour work together to make it a thoroughly entertaining one. There are places when the fellas seem to be going through the motions that will guarantee a laugh or a smile, but when they let loose and enjoy themselves their playful spirit is infectious. No pun intended.