• Photo: Ian Patrick

  • Photo: Juan Martin Pereira

  • Photo: Crying Out Loud

  • Photo: JP Masclet

Circus Compendium

Crying Out Loud

In the long view we see the reliable ability of circus to work itself through the cracks of mainstream culture: it appears in Covent Garden after the fruit market closes and before the developers move in, runs the corridors and halls of an abandoned Victorian fire and police station, springs up in timber-yards and warehouses and among the shadowed vaults under London Bridge.

Its restless spirit allies itself with the subversive countercultural energy of the new variety and alternative comedy circuits, takes on the voice of the poet and the anarchist, and picks up speed as it moves towards its modern incarnation: a hybrid artform, spread across borders, half in the public eye and half out of it, sensible of its history yet ready, always, to reinvent itself.

Over the years, Crying Out Loud has created a series of tools that dive deeper in the history of circus. We have combined these projects under the ‘Circus Compendium’ banner, and they’re all available for you to enjoy in different formats.

Please contact us if you would like to present any of Circus Compendium at your festival or event.

  • Circus Post

    Circus Post is a series of 14 short films made by Crying Out Loud and film-maker Deborah May contextualising the development of contemporary circus over the past 40 years. The films have been presented individually or together in foyers and exhibition spaces.

    The first episode is featured on this page, watch all the films here.

  • Circus Originals

    Circus Originals is a touring exhibition that explores the history of contemporary circus from the 1800s to the pioneers and new thinkers who have transformed the circus world today.

    It was commissioned for Circus250 and to date has been presented in foyers and exhibition spaces in London, Paris, Stockholm, Cork and Riga.

    It fits in a flight case, and can be easily be assembled in any space.

  • Circus Timeline

    Taking its starting point in the community and social circus movements of the late 60s and 70s, Crying Out Loud’s digital and visual Circus Timeline marks a selection of the pivotal companies and events from six decades of UK contemporary circus.