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Trapezi International Circus Festival fills streets of Reus after event facelift

The Trapezi International Circus Festival was a success with more than 100,000 visitors in its 18th edition, thanks to the evolution of the event. This year, after two editions affected by the economic crisis, Trapezi changed its goals and presented a festival focused on new languages and techniques. Jordi Gaspar, the Artistic Director since 2012, has been an essential part of this evolutionary process bringing new creative companies to the fair and conserving the more consolidated ones. Also he has increased the number of Catalan companies to the detriment of international ones with the aim of creating a showcase of Catalan proposals without leaving behind the importance of international circus trends.

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13 May 2014 11:15 AM

by

Celia Lucía López

Reus (CNA) –Trapezi Circus Festival has been an international event for years but recently it has felt the impact of the economic crisis. Now it has evolved into a new festival concept thanks to Jordi Gaspar, Trapezi’s Artistic Director. According to Gaspar, in this 18th edition held in Reus (southern Catalonia), organisers tried to “bring international proposals so people could know what is being done abroad and follow the trends and at the same time internationalise Catalan companies”. Additionally, it is a great showcase for all kind of professionals and programmers which have their space at the fair.


In this 2014 edition, more than half the circus companies were from Catalonia. This has not always been the case: the number of international proposals was larger than the domestic ones some years ago. The situation has changed because of the evolution of the festival brought about by new conditions as the economic ones. From now on, the Trapezi circus festival will try to promote domestic proposals all over the world according to Jordi Gaspar.

With this aim in mind, on Saturday Trapezi presented an initiative called Autopistes: Circus Dissemination in which the Festival participates. It is a two-year cooperation project from the Culture Programme of the European Union and has the aim of creating links between companies from Europe and North America to build a touring network for circus. The idea is to make the connection easier between programmers and professionals getting them united in activities such as workshops, tours or seminars. The programmed workshops will be in Montreal, Barcelona and Sweden.

This year, the festival managed to bring to the city of Reus new circus languages and techniques; the result was a great representation of contemporary circus. According to Miguel Angel Soto from Atempo Circ, Trapezi “emphasizes new circus trends and at the same time keeps the tradition, which is the base of the Circus”. Artists are happy with the festival but worried about how long it will last: “I think it is important to keep it alive and maintain its strength every year. We hope it continues like this because we don’t want it to disappear along with other festivals which have disappeared because of the lack of funds. That would be so sad” said Soto.

The visitors’ opinions are quite diverse, Marta, a twenty-two year old girl from Reus remembers other editions when she was younger: “all the streets were full of people and everywhere you went you found a performance about to start, it was more dynamic”. On the other hand, Gemma, a 62 year old woman from Cambrils (Costa Daurada), explains that Trapezi is still as great as many years ago “we came here every year with our children, they have grown now but we still come. I think it is a bit different but it is as great as in its first years”.

Professional activities

The number of professional performances officially on show was 72, 46 more than last year, an increase that shows the success of the festival. Professionals in Reus had the opportunity to share their views and enjoy new proposals. In addition three main events were held: the presentation of circat.cat a new web focused on Catalan circus; the presentation of the international Autopistes project and finally a talk about dramaturgy in the circus world conducted by Samuel Jornot, the Artistic Director of the Academy for Circus and Performance Art in Tilburg, who has worked as director for companies such as Le Circ du Soleil.

According to the organization, Trapezi was a success bringing to Reus more than 100,000 visitors and 72 professionals from 53 entities from the circus to see some of the 37 different shows offered in the 80 shows programmed all weekend.

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  • Atempocirc's performance at Reus' Trapezi circus festival (by C. L. López)

  • La Trocola's performance at Reus' Trapezi circus festival (by C. L. López)

  • Atempocirc's performance at Reus' Trapezi circus festival (by C. L. López)
  • La Trocola's performance at Reus' Trapezi circus festival (by C. L. López)