XTRAX Artist Spotlight: Ezra Trigg talks to us about Gorilla Circus

As part of the XTRAX Artist Spotlight with Stockton International Riverside Festival this month we spoke to Ezra Trigg, Director of Gorilla Circus, about his company and their latest show Altitude.

Tell us about your company and performers.

Gorilla Circus is an eclectic group of hyperactive misfits producing mainly large-scale circus-based spectaculars. The team are from all parts of Europe, each bringing a touch of their nationality and spirit to the company.

Tell us about the inspiration behind your show Altitude.

I was first inspired to create Altitude from watching the large-scale flying trapeze shows of Les Arts Saut in the early 2000s and later Cirque Vost.

Consequently, we first started to research and rehearse Altitude I had some serious artistic visions and ideas for what the show was going to be… I’m proud to say that absolutely none of them worked!

We quickly realised that our company could not stay serious for long, the more work we did the more light-hearted and playful the show became. Maybe we just needed more depressed performers or maybe it was an important lesson for us to find our own identity and style and make the work that felt right for us.

How have international collaborations shaped your work?

The nature of circus is always transitory, so we have always been a company with a strong international base of performers and crew. Every member of the company brings something different from their home country to the table.

In 2019 we collaborated with French street theatre company Generik Vapeur to produce a new environmentally themed show merci pour votre accueil. It was amazing to experience how a company from a different discipline and country produce work. The most important lesson we learned was to be open to everything and approach each idea with a philosophy of “Why Not?”.

As you reach your 10th Anniversary – what is your ambition for the next decade?

Making some money would be nice, but we have to be realistic! Really to be able to continue to create on our own terms, explore new concepts, approach circus with a spirit of innovation and see what happens. Doing more work abroad would be a privilege, but if not, we’ll still be here doing our thing.

Why do you love working outdoors?

I am an accidental outdoor artist. The scale and height of what I wanted to do meant that indoor spaces were prohibitively expensive and awkward to work in, so we started to work outdoors, and things just kept on going from there. There are still times when it’s cold and rainy that a nice warm, dry theatre or circus tent looks appealing, but I love the adaptive nature of working outdoors. Every show has a different backdrop and scenery to explore, different sights and sounds and most importantly different audiences!

Watch the video below to find out more about the team behind Gorilla Circus and their show Altitude as well as exploring their profile our XTRAX International Directory.

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Contact

Contact Katrina Houghton at kat@xtrax.org.uk to find out more about the XTRAX Artist Spotlight series.

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