The entire Flying Fruit Fly Circus ensemble will combine for its first show under the big top in more than two years on Thursday night.
Aptly titled Back in the Big Top Again, the production is part of the Albury-Wodonga circus' Borderville festival and will showcase the talents of 71 young performers at Noreuil Park oval.
The subtitle of the show Walk, Run, Flip is a nod to the journey young performers experience during their time with the circus and aims to highlight some of the major progressions and stages of development along the way.
Ben Lewis will make his debut as director and his goal was to make the show a celebration after two interrupted years from COVID-19.
"We wanted people to be able to come and have a good time and be able to escape everything else," he said.
"We did OK during 2021 with some performances here and there, but our kids were in and out of school and lockdown.
"We're really happy to be back on stage and have an audience.
"It feels really good for the kids to have that performance outlet.
"You do all this training but for the kids it's all about getting to show off their skills to a crowd and it gives them the motivation to keep doing it."
Mr Lewis said the show was put together in about four weeks and was fine-tuned under the big top this week ahead of the opener tonight.
"Prior to that month we were still unsure if we were able to do it or not or if we could have more than 100 people inside," he said.
"We have an intake every year so anyone that has joined the circus since 2019 has never done a show in the big top.
"Normally when we'd do a show we'd select a cast of 15 to 20, so it's definitely a challenge when you've got every single one of them. We try to feature the older, more experienced kids because they've got a bit more to show, but it's a balance of making sure all the kids shine and have a go."
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Artistic director Anni Davey can't wait to see the show in full flight.
"It's a circus and we're in a tent so you can expect action, spectacularity, fabulous feats, acrobatics and aerial skills," she said.
"On the weekend we've got a special presentation of the Tale of Two Harpies at Hothouse Theatre and we finish our festival on December 18 with a farty party called Fart Fabulous which will be great.
"It's going to be exciting to be back under the big top with seats full of people."
Australia's national youth circus has nine shows over 10 days, with the festival to wrap up on December 18.
Tickets are available at borderville.com.au/back-in-the-big-top-again.
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