In the midst of the pandemic, I got to experience a little bit of normalcy.Â I went to the circus! Circo Raluy Legacy is currently performing at Port Vell, which is Barcelona’s downtown port.
In case you just don’t want to read my review, watch this 1 minute video:Â It will give you a good idea of the circus!
I’m currently in Barcelona, Spain, where my wife is teaching.Â We decided that since our son is studying virtually, we should take advantage of this and all of us temporarily move to Spain.Â The allure of relatively warm weather, the hope that the Spanish government would be better equipped to handle the pandemic, and our love for Barcelona (as well as my wife’s status as a European citizen, which made it possible) all contributed to our decision.Â The day we left Chicago, it snowed 5 inches, and it has snowed about 20 inches there in the last 15 days.Â Meanwhile, in Barcelona, I’ve biked nearly everyday. So overall, not regretting our choice!
In a typical non-pandemic year, I see between 25-50 live shows a year.Â I didn’t realize how heavily not seeing live performance was weighing on me until I noticed the old-fashioned looking tent of Circo Raluy in Barcelona’s city center.Â They have just extended their run, and will be operating their show in Barcelona (assuming the government doesn’t close them down)
Circo Raluy Legacy is a delightful family friendly circus
The tent is a one ring tent, surrounded by old time circus wagons and smaller tents.Â Each of the wagons is adorned with wood carvings andÂ painted with Victorian tableaus of old circus posters and lettering.Â It harkens back to the Golden Age of Circus .
Everyone who enters the tent is required to wear a mask, and sanitize their hands.Â Seats seemed to be spaced out- and the tent was about half full.Â Performers who went into theÂ all wore face shields and/or masks, but did not wear masks during their acts.Â One of the performers did pull somebody out of the audience for one bit of audience participation, but it was unclear if they were a confederate or not.Â (They seemed like they could have been- after the show, the guy hung around)
The show is small with a family feeling.Â There are no animal acts at all in the show.Â Some of the skill acts in the show include a double trapeze act performed by some of the children in the show, a basketball dunking themed mini -tramp act, an interesting pole act where the pole itself was on a swivel at the bottom and also attached to a lead so it could swivel around, and a rolling globe act where the finale was two women walking their globes up a narrow gangway.
There were two recurring clown acts.Â Both of them talked far more than an American clown would talk.Â One was a typical European M. Loyale/Clown pairing.Â M. Loyale comes in and tells the clown to do something and the clown Tries, or does it wrong, or in some way flouts him.Â The routine happened 3 times, with a radio, with an audition button (like for Eurovision) and in the very beginning, showing him how to put on a mask.
The other clown act was more like a standup comic act, where the performer came out to introduce acts, and in the process said some very sly or mixed up things.Â I didn’t get the gist of most of it, as it was in Spanish (or possibly Catalan) but I could recognize that he was funny.Â The crowd kept on yelling Guapo, Guapo at him (which means handsome in Spanish) I assume he said something about how “handsome” he is.Â (Although there might be a Spanish soccer player nicknamed Guapo.) Even though I didn’t understand all of the jokes, I was glad to have seen him. He definitely added a different and slightly more “sly” feeling to the show.
Find out more about Circo Raluy Legacy and buy tickets online at http://www.circoraluy.com