Contemporary Circus Arts
About the Programme
This new course will start in September 2019 and is currently subject to validation. We will be accepting applications from September 2018.
The BA (Hons) degree Contemporary Circus Arts is uniquely designed to prepare artists for contemporary circus. The curriculum aims to develop polished, versatile and creative Circus Performers capable of working as artists in contemporary circus and entertainment events.
Students will graduate not just as performance artists but also performance makers with a deep understanding of creative and artistic potential of contemporary circus.
What makes the IAB BA (Hons) Contemporary Circus Arts Programme Special?
The IAB Contemporary Circus programme is linked with international professionals, performance organisations and agents. The programme provides classes across the spectrum of contemporary circus. All this is underpinned by a rigorous fitness and strength programme. The programme is completely focused on the real world of Contemporary Circus and the broader Entertainment industries.
Distinguishing Feature of BA (Hons) Contemporary Circus Arts
· The unique focus on Contemporary Circus Arts performance.
· One-to-one mentorship and coaching.
· High teacher contact time.
· High quality resources
· Substantial performance opportunities in a variety of settings.
· Working with industry professionals to establish networking links.
· High quality experienced staff with substantial links across the sector.
· A showcase presentation for UK and international agents, casting directors and choreographers.
· Being part of one of Europe's most creative and exciting international Institutions with the opportunity to collaborate with artists from across the performing arts.
· The study location in Sitges, Barcelona is one of Europe's most lively cultural and innovative cities.
The BA (Hons) Contemporary Circus programme is highly practical and provides its students with the opportunity to learn through doing. Students spend every day in the studio – learning through doing. The programme is taught full-time over three academic years (typically September to June)
At the end of the three years of the degree students will have
· A profound understanding of the creation of contemporary circus performance
· Virtuosity and creativity in a range of circus techniques
· A deep understanding of the business and professional practice of contemporary circus
· A clear understanding of their potential place within contemporary circus
· A clear and deep understanding of the history and theoretical paradigms that inform contemporary circus arts.
Core Areas of study
Aerial Performance, for example
Trapeze, Hoop, Rope, Silks and other aerial skills
Dance and floor Performance, for example
Gymnastics, Acro-dance, Jazz and Commercial Dance
Acting and Vocal Performance
Fitness and Body Conditioning
Fitness, Body strength, flexibility, Stamina
Audition Techniques, Marketing and Promotion, Performing Arts Business and Professional Studies, Circus History and Analysis
How will you be taught
Like all IAB programmes the BA Hons Contemporary Circus Arts degree is hands on and very practical. The majority of the study time will be spent in the studio and circus space. Students will work with full-time specialist staff and specialist circus assistants or visiting practitioners. The IAB believes in learning through doing. Safe practice is vital for the circus performers and all circus sessions will be conducted in the appropriate manner with all equipment meeting national and international regulations and standards.
Central to the success of any programme is the quality of the teaching staff. All the staff that teach on the programme are experts in their field and have had successful careers as performers, directors and arts entrepreneurs. The circus programme involves a considerable number of visiting and guest artists who are either current circus performers or, creating work with some of the world most prestigious companies and performers.
Resources and Technology
Students studying the BA Hons Contemporary Circus Arts degree will have access to a range of specialist resources including a fully equipped aerial circus studio with all the associated technical and safety equipment. In addition to the specialist equipment circus students will also have access to the IAB theatre, 12 rehearsal studios, music lab, recording studios, video editing equipment, a specialist performing arts library and other resources.
Graduates from the BA (Hons) in Contemporary Circus Arts Programme will have developed themselves through the programme as professional and versatile circus performers. As such the employment opportunities are wide.
Graduates will not only be a creative artist with a substantial portfolio of work behind them, but also will also be a professional practitioner with the commercial and networking skills to go out and find work and make their own work.The creative opportunities for Contemporary Circus performers and creators are large and may include
· Circus and large scale events
· TV and Film
· Performance arts
· Contemporary/Modern Dance
· Cruise Ships and Entertainment Complexes
· Promotion and Commercial Events
The degree will also allow them to progress on to further postgraduate / Master degree studies in Europe and the USA.
Who Is the Programme For?
The BA Hons Contemporary Circus Arts is for students who are committed to gaining and maintaining a performance or choreographic career in the specific areas of contemporary circus arts. It is designed for students who see circus holistically and want to take a leading role in it, not only has performers but directors and circus makers. We are seeking circus entrepreneurs.
To be awarded a place on the Contemporary Circus Programme programme you will need to demonstrate, passion, determination, leadership skills and openness to learning.
What We Look For in a Prospective Student
Performing in the Circus is a physically demanding activity. All successful applicants will need to demonstrate physical fitness, strength, stamina and flexibility. Whilst we do not prescribe a particular background for our applicants it is highly like that potential students will have successful experience in gymnastics. We also welcome applicants who come with a strong technical dance background of any style. Circus requires its performers to be fearless and able to embrace challenges. Circus is not for the faint hearted! Of course circus is not simply about tricks – circus is a theatre and performing arts. We aim to recruit students who have a passion for performance and a love of story-telling and entertainment.