Lowdown on the WA Circus Festival
School for Cool

Posted by Ushan Boyd

The 2014 Flyer - January 25th, 26th, 27th.

Beth Sheldon teaches Sandflies knots, Carnidale

Sandfly assisted on flying trapeze, Carnidale

The Western Australian Circus Festival, hosted by the Lunar Circus at Karridale, WA is an annual gathering of professionals, students and characters of the circus variety.

Here are Crystal Stacey and Georgia Deguara on Karnidale. Both Crystal and Georgia are Act-Belong-Commit Sandfly Circus Legends, both have graduated onto Tertiary Circus training - Crystal at Fruit Fly Circus, and Georgia at in a Cert III NICA.

"Western Australian circus festival = best experience of my life ! It's where newbie circus peeps and world renowned professionals are hubbed in a speck of a town called Karridale aka CARNYDALE ! The impossible seems possible ! In Aladdin's words " a whole new world..". Full of flying trapeze flights and diving board Heights, it's simply a spectacle not to be missed! This will be my 6th year at the festival and far from the last!"
- Crystal Stacey


"The West Australian Circus Festival is a mish-mash boiling pot of social and cultural sharing in relation to those of a circus breed. The people of "Karnivale" range from international stars to absolute beginners. What intrigued me is the way the training weeks are constructed, with a multitude of classes taught by those with the utmost skill who are ready to walk you through the basics or utterly challenge you.
The single most important aspect of the festival is an experience I didn't expect at all - the encapsulating love of the circus family. Though each member of this assortment is from different corners of the earth, range from the age of 1-100, and have a skill set just as vast, we all come together. (Whether that be for the circus tucker, or the brilliant stories and mucking around that evolves from these gatherings.) Circus background or not, I highly recommend a stay at Fatso's Festival."
- Georgia Deguara



'Fatso' is Matt Yates, the proprietor of Lunar Circus and the host of Carnidale. The 3 day festival runs shows from midday to midnight, and live music most of the day and into the evening as well. But the real draw card for circus crew isn't just the festival itself. Running for the 2 weeks prior to the festival is a full time workshop and skills intensive. This period is the perfect time to dig deep into circus skills. Pro's rub shoulders with novices and skills and tricks are shared freely. It is a great time to get to know people, and make friends. And then, come the festival, everything is full blast, and many who attended the workshops are then involved in the shows that make up the weekends entertainment.

If you see a Sandfly who's been to the Festival, ask them what they learned... I'm sure they'll have something to say. And if you don't know what to do for New Year, and you happen to be 'Down South', I recommend dropping into Carnidale. It really is cool.
Categories AAA Publish, Sandfly Troupe 2014