In 2005 a street artist named Winston Ruddle invested all of his savings to make his childhood dream come true: he founded a circus college in an old hotel in Tanzania. His mission: to train young African artists. Over the years Ruddle has trained over 150 young African performers at the Artists’ College thus providing many with the opportunity to escape poverty. A few days ago I got to see some of those artists, who are a part of Circus Der Sinne (Circus of the senses), at “Mother Africa” at the New Victory Theater. Here’s what I thought:
In “Mother Africa” the cast of 26 performers mixes modern circus acts with traditional African dance and music. A 7-person band plays a variety of instruments, including traditional African drums. I found the music fun and the singing to be absolutely gorgeous, plus the traditional dancing and costumes make you feel like you’re on a little trip to Africa.
But the real showstopper is the daredevil acrobatic acts: there’s a guy on a unicycle who rides on ridiculously tall unicycles; an amazing hula hoops dancer; mind-boggling Icarian Games (where a foot juggler manipulates an acrobat instead of an inanimate object); a breathtaking chair stack performance and a human pretzel, just to name a few. Some of the performances were similar to Cirque de Soleil and just like Cirque de Soleil, I just kept hearing myself say “wow!” at every single act. What also impressed me was the lack of padding on the floor. There was not a single thing to protect these brave and talented artists, which include a young boy.
“Mother Africa” will be showing through the holiday season and is a fun show for the entire family. The performance is 100 minutes long, plus a short intermission. It’s appropriate for kids ages 5 and up.
Here’s a clip from the show:
When: Through January 5th, 2014
Where: The New Victory Theater
209 West 42nd Street, Between 7&8 Avenues, New York
Price: $17-$60 per person
To Purchase Tickets click here.
To purchase by phone call (646) 223-3010
Box office is open Sunday & Monday 11am-5pm; Tuesday-Saturday 12pm-7pm
Photos courtesy of Circus Der Sinne
I was not compensated for this post I received tickets.
Senior Reviewer Maytal Wichman is the owner of Mama’s Bites and has also written for The Huffington Post. She has been living in New York City for thirteen years and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in English Literature as well as a Law Degree, but blogging is her true passion. Maytal is a stay-at-home mom to three kids (ages 6, 4 and 1) and loves finding great products that make her family’s life easier.