Reaching the Tassie Circus Festival
25 January 13
This weekend is the culmination of months of anticipation. Tasmanian Circus Festival tickets go on sale at the beginning of October and rapidly sell out, but upon the recommendation of a friend, we bought our tickets early and that’s what brought us to Tasmania this summer.
The Circus Festival was first run in 1991 at a private property in northwest Tasmania. Tony Rooke offered his land to fellow performers for a weekend of collaborative workshops, performances and fun. Now a national institution, the circus festival has moved to locations around Australia and returns to its Tasmanian home every two years.
We’re only here for the performance weekend. Workshops have been running all week, allowing performers to hone their skills and even create new acts just for this weekend. Often, the acts that are premiered at the Circus Festival go on to tour the world.
When leaving Launceston, I set out in a convoy of three vehicles because we wanted to camp together. Unfortunately, we were separated at the gate because buses like ours park in a different place to the tent-campers. However, Yvonne and Joy were able to bring their things up to our paddock and set up their tents directly behind our bus.
We wandered around the grounds to see who else is setting up camp and watch some circus performers practising their routines.
Today, there aren’t very many performances planned. Many more campers have driven on-site and are still setting up their tents. I wander around the tent city for a while and marvel at the number of people who have come to this remote location for the weekend.
As we go to bed, we’re excited by what we’ve already seen and look forward to the official performances later on. The girls have already made friends with children who live in buses like ours and I’m glad that our site is so close to the main oval. I’m really happy to be here — we’re camping with friends — and I know it’s going to be a good weekend.