Family Life

Cork Midsummer Festival celebrates 250 years of circus with AWESOME line-up

This June, Cork Midsummer Festival is to celebrate 250 years of circus with ground-breaking new work and free family-friendly events.

Munster’s largest annual multi-disciplinary arts festival will mark their anniversary with an Irish premiere of hip hop/circus fusion Union Black at Neptune Stadium. 

Further performances for Circus250, a UK and Irish anniversary programme celebrating circus, include a hip hop takeover at UCC, supported by UCC Creative, an initiative of University College Cork. It stars Cork dance troupe and 2018 winners of Ireland’s Got Talent, RDC.  

Created for Cork, Union Black is a mix of dance-theatre and circus from critically-acclaimed hip hop collective Far From The Norm and a selection of Europe and Ireland's best hip hop dancers and circus artists. They include Crying Out Loud (UK), Le Plus Petit Cirque Du Monde (France) and Subtopia (Sweden).

"This is an incredible new show for Cork, created especially for the Festival," Cork Midsummer Festival Director, Lorraine Maye said.

"Exploring football culture and politics, Union Black is an exhilarating experience — from the amazing footwork, to the physical floor routines, to the skill of the Chinese pole. 

"By commissioning shows like Union Black and hosting other great circus inspired events, we are showcasing ground-breaking and innovative work, building new partnerships, and ensuring that the circus artform is celebrated and cherished." 

The family-friendly hip hop takeover at UCC, Can I Kick It? / Yes You Can! will see free live performances at the University’s Devere Hall and outdoor amphitheatre on 16 June from 1pm to 5pm.

The event is a collaboration with Ireland’s Got Talent champions, Billie-Jean’s RDC; along with representatives from Union Black; hip-hop co-op Cuttin’ Heads Collective; and rappers, singers, and musicians from The Kabin Studio (supported by Music Generation Cork City). It is hosted by Red FM’s Stevie G. 

During the Cork Midsummer Festival, Circus Factory is holding a ‘Run Away With The Circus’ Summer Camp. Taking place from 19 June – 21 June, it is open to those aged over 12, and runs at the Circus Factory, Centre Park House, Centre Park Road. 

Cork Midsummer Festival runs from 15-24 June, and features 10 days of theatre, literature, dance, music, visual art and family-friendly festivities.

See for more info. 

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