Standing ovations for “Maximum Penalty” – Flic-Flac in Berlin or: The circus is in town

© 2016, Photo: Andreas Hagemoser

Berlin, Germany (Weltexpress). In Berlin’s Hertzallee close to the Zoological Garden its sheer hell, or in other words: here artists are let loose. The title of the performance figures as its program. For “Maximum Penalty” is a gruesome-beautiful entertainment show and the crowd around the stars in the ring was already out of its wits on the first evening. At the premiere on Thursday, October 20, the audience celebrated the artists with standing ovations.

World premieres, however, took place on the opposite side of the republic – in Oberhausen, a Ruhr town, the first 1989 and the last 25 years later.

Audience and media thronged around celebrities especially at the bar, so the event began with delay. Then came the fireworks. One climax followed another. On a revolving stage, foolhardy and for some even mad, or at least maddening visions were presented by artists from all over the world. Our favourite was Patrick Lemoine, a juggling comedian, who let us be part of his world seeing things – life is but a play, and can be a laughing matter – in a witty, quite thoughtful and in the end hilariously funny way.

A live band with surround sound played under the tent roof on a scaffolding of bars that reminded us of a prison. The whole set up seemed to be just a jail by the looks of it, certainly very gloomy in its glamour. Not only specially composed and arranged music, but also an imposing light show with 300 headlights provided a great spectacle for open ears and mouths.

The very best in town came at the very end of the program. All of us in the audience were completely thrilled, some shrieked now and then or yelled while others held their breath, nobody trusting their eyes as the show got rolling. At first the “Globe of Speed” was only a metal cask, a punctured ball with a diameter of 6.50 meters, a sort of spooky sputnik. Then, up to seven Motorcyclists drive in and round about, side by side and on top of each other or below, depending how you look – if you don’t prefer to firmly keep your lids down. And although all went well at the premiere, accidents do happen. Like two days later, when a pair of bikes bumped into each other. But serious injuries are not on record over the years.

The motorcycle artists and undaunted motocross freestylers of the formation “Air-Speed” not only raced round, they also flew high above their spectators through the tent. No wonder that Latin Americans are long time visitors. More to our liking was the seven-man pyramid on a wire rope. Beautiful to watch how they hovered under the black and yellow tent. They are up there with no help or any holds, and much the same applies to that wheel of death, where on or in of it dancing is also without a double floor.

Irina Izareva is not a dancing queen, but she enjoys juggling in a cage where she plays around with her shining, glittering balls. This and the Diabolo Show by Nicolai Kuntz look as spectacular as Laura Miller in her role of water mermaid and whirlwind.

Flic-Flac is really hell of a show. Everybody survived the premiere, including the actors. To quote Director Kastein: “We cement our reputation as a show with the most risky numbers in Germany. We stage the risk.” Cross your fingers then. And get your kicks out of the acts at Circus Flic-Flac, folks!

Tickets for the shrill show at Hertzallee 41 in Berlin are available between 19 and 49 euros, reduced between 15 and 44 euros. To order, phone 01806 – 999000202. “Maximum Penalty” runs until December 4, 2016 with no casualties, we hope!

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