Review: The Chinese State Circus at Aylesbury Theatre

PUBLISHED: 10:27 18 February 2011 | UPDATED: 18:54 20 February 2013

Review: The Chinese State Circus at Aylesbury Theatre

Review: The Chinese State Circus at Aylesbury Theatre

Reviewer Stephen Bourke attends the opening night for the Chinese State Circus at the Aylesbury Waterside Theatre


The Chinese State Circus, Aylesbury Waterside Theatre

February 17 to 20, 2011

By Stephen Bourke

Feats of acrobatic versatility and juggling acts that appear to defy the laws of gravity are anticipated when the Chinese Circus comes to town.

This performance entitled MULAN does not disappoint by any means, with an almost faultless display. In addition are the Shaolin Warriors with their fearless enactment of the martial arts; including the breaking of iron bars over their heads. Two such warriors having achieved this result wore a stunned expression as if withholding the urge to cry out with pain (I kid you not)!

With the accompanying acts of almost self impaling themselves on spears and swords, pushing to the limits what the human body can stand, this show is definitely a case of dont try this at home.

Other acts include lifting about 50 kilos of benches and balancing them on the head, jumping through hoops and balancing huge canopies on very tallbamboo poles on the chin!

The theme of the story of MULAN, the peasant girl who came to lead the army to save her country from invasion, does not really add to the show and appears as a very loose association. However, a narration by the Monkey King and his companion Pig, who are forever popping up out of nowhere, provide lively interludes and I am sure will be a great hit with the younger members of the audience.

Personally, I would have offered the Monkey King to the Shaolin Warriors for their practice sessions and only just held back from willing the Pig the same fate.

Highlight of the evening was girls hurling gold soup bowls at each others heads whilst riding on unicycles four metres high - simply stunning to watch. The whole show is very colourful and moves at a non-stop pace.Thoroughly recommended as a family show.

  • The show runs until February 20. For tickets call the box office on 0844 8717607 or book online at

Aylesbury Waterside Theatre, Exchange Street, Aylesbury, Bucks HP20 1UG

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