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Circa: Wolfgang review at Underbelly Circus Hub – ‘lovely but subdued circus show about Mozart’

Circa: Wolfgang at Underbelly Circus Hub, Edinburgh. Photo: Dylan Evans Circa: Wolfgang at Underbelly Circus Hub, Edinburgh. Photo: Dylan Evans
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Crescendos are a familiar part of classical music composition: the slow and steady climb to the earth-moving finale. Circa’s new show for children and families, based on the character and music of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, follows a similar format.

It starts off slowly and quietly. A woman (Kathryn O’Keeffe) is celebrating her birthday alone. To get the party started she whacks on some of Vienna’s finest and, as if by magic, the man himself appears.

There’s an old-school charm to the first section. Mozart (Paul O’Keeffe) and the birthday girl perform some impressive acrobatics together, tumbling and jumping over, around and on each other. There are also tricks with sheets of paper and shadow puppets made using hands.

It’s lovely but a little too subdued. It’s also difficult to decipher the story – if there is one. There is, however, a great cycling routine and the littlest members of the audience, around the five-year-old mark, adore the farcical humour and knockabout routines.

The triumphant, loud moments do come in the end. All of these gentler skits build to a daring climb on the furniture and champagne bottles. Suddenly, the enfant terrible of musical yore is revealed.

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Charismatic duo twist, tumble and turn through new circus show about Mozart