June 27, 2008

Metro Circus

Went to the circus today, the usual bunch and I. Speaking for myself, it wasn't anything like what I had expected it to be, and, in the end, just like most things unexpected, it was an eye-opener of sorts.

Metro Circus was made up of an eclectic collection of performers, ranging from acrobats to jugglers, trapeze artists to clowns and even a two-piece band! And each and every person, animal or piece of equipment, right until the circus tent was in a state of raggedness rushing headlong towards advanced dilapidation.

The events of those one and a half hours are disoriented and disordered in my recollection. Did the Jugglers come first or the young boy who did the most amazing acrobatics I have ever seen? Or was it the Trapeze Artists, who flew through the air at heart stopping heights, or the Fire-Eater who gulped down burning coal with a practised panache, breathed fire with the flames shooting four to five feet in the air (see picture) and then, to wrap things up, danced to the latest Hindi film songs with a gusto usually reserved for Indian Wedding Baraats?
What I remember with the utmost clarity are the clowns, who were trying valiantly to make us laugh, without much success. I remember their stumbling gait and short stature, every movement coming from a necessity to feed the stomach, and doing so through an honest and honourable job. I remember the bleak contrast between the sorrow in their eyes and the painted laughs on their poor faces.

But most of all, I remember thinking of them as brave. Why brave? Why not? What else is a person who cocks a snoot at a life which seems determined to beat and break him and crawls out the corner he's been pushed into?

Metro Circus was a lot of things; poor funding, mild entertainment, boring for the most part, childish glee, adult jadedness.

But, above all, it was about showmanship.

A round of applause to this dying art, Ladies and Gentlemen, for the show does go on.

21 June, 2008


Swat !!! said...

i remember going to the circus a few years ago..that was back in hyderabad actually...!! all i can remember is that i was never fascinated even a little bit..i remember thinking it probably wouldn't have been that bleak and dull if i had been there as a kid..!!
but i guess it's never too late to sit in those tents n fulfill your childish fantasies :)
i would still go to one of those shows rather than stay at home! :)

hitesh rawat said...

i remember when i used to like circuses .......it used to be fun those days......i mean they will be now too..but i lost my interest.....it used to always hosted in the place outside..Noida Stadium..that place was like ...half KM from my home......

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