A small, suspended metal hoop that the aerialist moves through/over/under around. Always there are people who buck the trend (and always they are the most interesting), but most hoop performance is relatively staid – the restrictive space of the circle (which in diameter is about or a little less than the length of the aerialist's straight leg) is used mostly as an excuse for routines where flexible posing is the foremost aim. As with silks, there's a heavy majority of female practitioners.
The programme for Migrations has as its centrefold a timeline of the history of diaspora, starting with the Phoenicians in Lebanon (c. -3000 BC), tracking the movements of the Huns, the Magyars and the imperialist British, and ending in 2007 with the arrival at Circus Space of the recently graduated degree students who are onstage tonight.
Tedros Girmaye devastates club-wielding ninjas; Pablo Meneu Barreira breaks free on straps after brushing his teeth continuously for 30 years; Maximilià Calaf Sevé is …Somewhere… Nowhere! in a hot dusty trampoline solo that draws inspiration from the writing of Paul Auster; frustrated Circus Space janitor Sergio Gonzalez Gallego impresses the ladies with acrobatics cribbed from the real students.
Ilona Jäntti is a tremendous aerialist. She’s been in circus a long time and has the consequent deep well of physical resources, but it’s style, really, that sets her apart: graceful but not too-clean, having an all-body approach where elbows, teeth, anything can be used to keep her in the air.