Friday, 14 September 2012

On a personal Note

I do love to arrive into a new town to meet up with my fellow carnies. As I exited the spiegel tent last night and walked to the porta loos It struck me just how much I love the back stage areas of festivals. I spend a substantial amount of time of my life in these temporary places. Empty carparks or gravelly sportsfields gets transformed as techies, roadies and roustabouts pull tents, carousels, the Ferris wheel and bars off the back of rickety old trucks.
Within days the non-descript place is transformed into a brand new thing, an area where different rules apply - it becomes a Carnival.
A perimeter fence is put up to delineate the transfigured space. Like a church contains one type of sacred space, the carnivals edge marks another. A place where everything which is human is flaunted and celebrated.
The backstage area here in Brisbane has a spot in the fence where it is possible to peek over. Every time I see someone raise up on tippy toes to catch a glimpse of the magic world behind the scenes it warms my heart.
Watching this little boy sneak a peak at the English Gents melted my heart.
 I also wonder what they see.
For the world of the circus that they normally see is the shiny facades the ornate paintings and colourfull banners and posters. This is the beautiful side. Backstage we sit on plastic chairs, eat take away food, drink powder coffee from styrofoam cups. The artists are warming up on a children's puzzle play mat laid down on a dusty almost grass-less little patch. Temporary structures and gaffa tape holds up a fat plastic hose coming from the noisy industrial sized air-conditioning unit.

I wonder if the Crowds peeping in are disappointed or if they realize that it is in environments like this the Carnival Dreams presented out the front, inside the Spiegel tents and Big Tops are born. In the dirty, chaotic and temporary world where artists are cramped in. Minds both similar and and very different meet. Fleeting encounters with other creatives. People with open minds, but (mostly) not so open their brains fall out do their art, get drunk and talk about ideas as if they were already real.

It is from this stuff dreams are made.

The Front
The Back

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