Photo Feature: Cirque Stratosphere media call

It’s not often that you find yourself between the sails of the Opera House with gymnasts, tumblers, roller skaters, a woman in metallic shorts with a two-foot-long pink wig and a ‘Boy With Tape on His Face’. And yet, there I was, in the bright Sydney sunshine lying on the ground with a camera in my hand.

Cirque Stratosphere is a “space themed circus” featuring gravity-defying, logic imploding and head spinning stunts that will elevate thrill and bewilder.

The sun is shining for the media call of space-themed circus – Cirque Stratosphere, but the clouds are brewing and the wind is picking up, so The Galactus Gods (a pair of Russian Gymnasts), we are told, may be unable to perform. Hand standing on someone’s head is apparently difficult to do in high winds. And yet, as the gusts blew about them, handstand they did, stoic Russian faces emotionless in their intensity.

With the sort of grand scale, breath-holding, pearl-clutching entertainment that a show like this provides, it is difficult to show through photographs the level of energy and intensity that these performers give. Needless to say, Submergence, a pair of Chinese hoop divers, give it their all, flipping and rolling to the point where (unusually for an audience member) I could hear their heavy breathing, such was their exertion.

After sojourning into the foyer of the Concert Hall to watch a performance by The Orbiter, a more lyrical performance described as “unique spinning artistry [that] will captivate and amaze,” the performances are over and the photographers turn to more staged images of the performers. The spectacle has drawn a crowd of tourists, no doubt wondering if this is something that occurs every day on the steps of the Sydney Opera House. The answer is, of course, yes… and watch out for drop bears.

Cirque Stratosphere?opens at the Sydney Opera House on the 24th of December.

David Hooley is a Sydney based actor and photographer. ?For more information visit or visit his Facebook?or Instagram page.

David Hooley

David Hooley is a Sydney based actor and photographer. A graduate of WAAPA and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland; he has a passion for new Australian works.  When not on stage he runs his own photographic business - more info at

David Hooley

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