Opening events

The 12th Budapest Circus Festival started on the 8th of January, and with this event, the festive year of 2018 celebrating the 250th anniversary of modern circus started as well. On the 8th of January, Monday, at 16:00 the best artists in the world marched on the red carpet in the Capital Circus while music plays.

Besides that the monumental, international exhibition titled '250 years Circus – 250 meters Circus Art' was compiled for the occasion and commemorates the jubilee of circus. 250 images displayed led you through the history of the circus in Europe from the beginning in 1768 to the present, 2018. The international exhibition was opened by dr. Tibor Navracsics, EU Commissioner for Education on the 8th of January, Monday, at 17:00 in the Capital Circus.

The name Tihany is a notion in circus art? It is not only a national bond but the synonym of outstanding quality. Thanks to the persons who created acts and performances deriving from such new aspects that they resulted in reforming the whole circus art in the last two decades of the 20th century. Ferenc Czeisler, one among those artists had a key role in that process. He, the father of Circus Tihany is interpreted as the reformer of the circus art in all over the world. The premiere was held on the 8th of January, Monday, at 17:30. 

Opening numbers

Modern circus art celebrates its 250th birthday in 2018.

The first modern circus opened in 9th of January 1768 with the guidance of Philip Astley. For this reason the opening event of the 12th Budapest International Circus Festival started with the horse act of Flórián Richte Hungarian artist, who won the first prize in the International Circus Festival of Monte-Carlo in 2008.

The Rippel Brothers in the Circus Festival!

The Rippel Brothers also performed on the 12th Budapest International Circus Festival! Both A and B shows started with the two brothers’s, Ferenc Rippel’s and Viktor Rippel’s spectacular handstand opening number, after which the competition started!


Show „A”
Opening Production:
Richter Flórián – Horseback acrobat act (Hungary)
Rippel Brothers – Handstand in the air (Hungary)
Competition program
1. Las Bellas Chicas – Chinese rod act (Cuba)
2. Duo Cardio – Perche act (Mexico)
3. Without Socks – Clown trio (Russia) 
4. Agustín Viglione – Bubble act (Argentina)
5. Presentation of the Jury
6. Duo Solys – Handstand (Cuba)
7. Without Socks – Clown trio (Russia) 
8. Nomuna – Hand voltige (Mongolia)
1. Duo Supka – Jugglers (Czech Republic)
2. Without Socks – Clown trio (Russia)
3. Ádám and Benjamin – Chinese rod act (Hungary)
4. Rafał Walusz – Illusionist (Poland)
5. Hametov Family – Aerial strap act (Uzbekistan)
6. Without Socks – Clown trio (Russia)
7. Chinese National Acrobatic Troupe – Gorgeous Girls - Diabolos (China)
8. Finale
Show „B”
Opening Production:
Richter Flórián – Horseback acrobat act (Hungary)
Rippel Brothers – Handstand in the air (Hungary)
Competition program
1. Stanislav Vysotskyi – Juggler (Ukraine) 
2. Alex Bobylev – Clown (Russia)
3. Bazan Sisters – Handstand (Brazil) 
4. Kalashnikov Brothers – Diabolo (Russia)
5. Presentation of the Jury
6. Alex Bobylev – Clown (Russia)
7. Nomuna – Teeterboard act (Mongolia)
1. Vodyanik Group: Gallea Act – Aerial act (Russia)
2. Alex Bobylev – bohóc/ Clown (Russia)
3. Brayan Gambi – Handstand (France)
4. Andrejs Fjodors - pigeon and dog act (Latvia)
5. Duo Feeling – gurtniszám/ Aerial bungee strap act (Ukraine) 
6. Duo Funcoholics – Chinese rod act (Russia)
7. Alex Bobylev – Clown (Russia)
8. Chinese National Acrobatic Troupe – Umbrella Juggling (China)
9. Finale

About the participants:

Two years ago Sun Lili, creative director of the Chinese National Acrobatic Troupe and artistic director of Beijing Acrobat School made a promise as one of the juries of the 11th Budapest International Circus Festival: she would create a world-class act that had never been before with her team by 2018, on the condition that it would be shown on the next Budapest Circus Festival. The time of the circus festival arrived, and

·         The world-class act was ready: with the performance of the Chinese National Acrobatic Troupe we witnessed a special lotus bloom. Unlike traditional umbrella jugglers, in this performance a new dimension of juggling skill unfolded through the pulsating movement of the elegant human lotus that originates from the roots of the harmonic Chinese culture. The umbrellas shine as the petals of the bloom of this magnificent human compositions, and show the amazing beauty of the Chinese temperament. The Chinese group arrived to the festival with a diabolo act as well.

·         The Troupe Nomuna invited the visitors to a dynamic, reckless world, they showed two act as well – one spring board and one hand voltage production – in the competition. The group which consists of 12 participants previously had won two big prizes, five gold medals and one silver medal during the last three years with their outstanding performance.

·         Youthful energy characterizes the Russian clown trio, the Without socks, who create their novel, fresh and extraordinarily humorous performances based on the tradition of clown art


Other participants of the show:

·         the Duo Cardio with their perch act from Mexico,

·         Agustín Viglione with his magic bubble act from Argentine,

·         the Las Bellas Chicas group with their Chinese pole act from Cuba,

·         Andrejs Fjodorvs with his dog- and pigeon act from Latvia,

·         the Duo Solys with their handstand act from Cuba,

·         the Hametov Family with their strap act from Uzbekistan,

·         Alex Bobylev clown from Russia,

·         Brayan Gambit with his handstand act from France,

·         the Kalashnikov Brothers with their diabolo act from Ukraine,

·         Konstantin Gvozdetskiy with their Russian pole act from Russia,

·         the Duo Feeling with their strap act from Ukraine,

·         Stanislav Vysotskyi juggler from Ukraine,

·         the Los Bazan group with their handstand act from Italy, and

·         Vodianik Yaroslavna with her aerialist act.


From the Visegrád Four, there were two acts during the competition:

·         the Duo Supka juggler duo from the Czech Republic,

·         and the Polish illusionist, Rafał Walusz who chose the art of illusion as his profession influenced by the world-known Hungarian illusionist, Rodolfo

Members of the Jury

- Eugene Chaplin: jury president, president of the Vevey Comedy Festival, consultant to the International Circus Festival of Vaudreuil-Dorion in Canada

- Peter Dubinsky: owner of the Firebird Productions

- Fabrice Becker: casting director of Cirque du Soleil

- Elisa van der Meiden: casting director of Stardust BV Presentatrice of Germany

- Lyudmila Shevchenko: director of the National Circus of Ukraine in Kiev

- Sun Lili: creative director of China National Acrobatic Troupe, art director of Beijing Acrobatic School

- Fabio Montico: President of the International Circus Festival of Italy

- Endrész László: director and producer of Blackpool Tower Circus

Newcomer show

The goal of a festival on one hand is to provide a wide spectrum of the most excellent circus art productions of the world and on the other hand to introduce the most successful Hungarian troupes to the audience. In addition to the competition we also organized the Newcomer Show where the Hungarian performers as well as the new generation, the promising talents introduced themselves to the audience.
It is our mission to introduce the Hungarian artists to the most excellent representatives of the profession, circus directors, managers arriving in Hungary from abroad.
The Committee of the festival drew the professionals' attention to the excellent representatives of the Hungarian circus art:
1. Herczeg Dávid – Rola-Bola act 
2. Sziszka - Acrobatic monocycle act
3. Next Generation - Young Children of Hungarian Circus Directors in the Ring!
Performers: VARGA RIKO MANUEL - juggler
4. Fodor Felícia –  aerial strap act
5. Lui – illusionist 
1. Vellai Krisztina – aerial act 
2. Bernath Imre – Visual comedy
3. Fábián Attila – Handstand
4. Bernath Imre – Visual comedy
5. High5 – Trampoline act 
6. Golden Pyramid – Power-lifting act


Lyrical Circus Late-Night Show

The Budapest Circus is open to the public with a modern, all-round circus show. The astonishing symbiosis of poetry, music and art productions was elevated in the stage, in which space and time expand. In the production astonishing air, chinese rod, Cyr wheel and bicycle acts conquer the audiance and drive them through of the diverse, emotional relationship between men and women. The show was held on the 12th of January, Friady, at 22:00 in Capital Circus.
Silvia Dopazo – Aerial rope act (Spain)
Yan Sokolovskyy & Maria Ilienko – Bicycle date (Ukraine)
Duo Romance – Pole dance act (Romania)
Patrik Nieklan – Cyr wheel act (Poland)
Duo Juderto – Aerial strap act (Hungary)
Artimpression – Trapeze act (Hungary)
Aliona Klimovich – Foot juggling act (Belarus)
Michael Olivares – Aerial strap act (Spain)
Bakk Diána – Pole act (Hungary)
Tatiana Ozhiganova and Denis Yevgenyevich – Aerial act (United Kingdom)
Xtreme Brothers – Powerlifting trio (Romania)


Straight Labyrinth

A new contemporary circus production was presented on the opening night of the 12th Budapest Circus Festival. The director and choreographer of the piece, Máté Hegymegi (HU) created the work with a young team of circus artists in the autumn. The production is based on Yonderboi's music mix Straight Labyrinth with poems of János Pilinszky, Sándor Weöres, Ernő Szép, Frigyes Karinthy, Endre Ady and Shakespeare. Teases of an old clown's memories and associations about a relationship from the desire of discovery to the stifling of absence. Straight Labyrinth started on the 8th of January, Monday, 20:00, in the MACIVA Circus Art Studio. All tickets were sold for this show.

Performers in the Budapest Castle Bazaar

Castle Garden Variety

Castle Garden Variety was an all evening long, highly entertaining, spectacular and unforgettable show, in which the most entertaining, award-winning, well-travelled and selected illusionists, comedians and artists astonished, made laugh and amazed the audience.
In this evening an entertaining genre with a long past came alive, which flourishes in Western Europe even today, and in which the world’s greatest stars, musicians, illusionists, comedians and circus artists participated.
Ferenc Kőhalmi – illusionist, master of ceremonies (Illusionist European Championship, bronze award)
Ferenc Galambos – illusionist (Illusionist World Championship, 3rd place)
Csaba Méhes – comedian, pantomime (Grand Prix award)
Rob Alton – BMX (BMX flatland world champion, Cirque du Soleil)
Andrea Alton – aerial ring (Special Prize – Cirque du Demain)
Sebastian & Krisztina – quick change dance (Bronze award – International Circusfestival Ensedei)
pianist: Péter Wágner-Puskás
Budapest Castle Bazaar, 11th of January 2018, 19:00

Csaba Méhes and the Brass in the Five: LET'S GO TO RIO!

Six street musicians find each other by accident in the whirl of the big city and then they settle for an adventurous journey around the world. Their own music and instruments serve as vehicle, their own playfulness, imagination and joy are their fuel. The journey occurs through instruments, tunes, gestures, the language of pantomime, without words, with hilarious, witty humour, while they make the guests laughing hard. Csaba Méhes is an illustrious Hungarian comedian, pantomime, the master of visual humour and he joins together with the members of Brass in the Five brass quintet in this production!
Csaba Méhes - pantomim, comedy
László Simai - trumpet
Attila Monoky - trumpet 
Koppányi Béla - clarion
Péter Soós - horn
Tibor Takács - tuba
Budapest Castle Bazaar, 12th of January, 2018, 19:00

PlanSHET: PinUp Quartet & DEKRU: Light Souls

Two frenetic student groups of the Artist School of Kiev made their audience laugh hard with their joined comical pantomime performance. The PlanSHET formation were created in March 2016, it was formed by six ladies in their early twenties, they are all students in their third years. Their visual, wordless acts are full of creativity, charm, sensitivity. The second group, Quartet DEKRU is formed by one lady and three gentlemen, whose mature, imaginative performances full of gestures are the highest form of making the audience laugh.
Budapest Castle Bazaar, 13th of January, 2018, 15:00

Performers in the National Theatre

Maski Theatre (Ukraine): Maski Cubed

The world famous Maski Theatre travelled to Budapest from Odessa to provide more than one and half hour with full of laugh and carefree fun to the Hungarian audience. The Ukrainian comedians performed in the National Theatre as participant of the program of the 12th Budapest International Circus Festival held between the 8th and 14th of January. They presented plenty of colossal ideas and comedic situations on the stage.
The Ukrainian group has 30 years of experience and countless price. They have a unique style that cannot be mistaken for any other performer. They are well-known not only in their country, but in the world as well. They mix the elements of commedia dell’arte, absurd theatre, pantomime, comedy and clown pranks. They invoke imagination for their production. Georgiy Deliyev, director of the performance said: “We are all looking for freedom, but in many cases, we become the prisoners of our own stereotypes. Our performance seeks out to dismantle borders, and with this we could get to know ourselves better!”
National Theatre – Hilda Gobbi Stage – 10th January 2018. 19.00