About circusnext's selections
Within “circusnext Platform”, project co-funded by the European Union, circusnext association in Paris along with 24 members (creation & diffusion venues, festivals) in 15 countries carry out an annual selection process to identify and support across Europe emerging authors who create original circus forms.
“Author” is understood as an artist who has authority over their work, who can defend their artistic vision and choices and position their work in the circus and performing arts fields.
“Emergence” is understood as a level of professional recognition and should not be confused with youth as there is no age limit for applicants at circusnext.
“Original circus” is related to idea of bold creations and artistic risk-taking.
All types of circus creations are admissible except acts: all types of forms, aesthetics, formats, subject, target audience, all circus disciplines including l interdisciplinary endeavours between circus and other art forms.
You can find out more about our annual selection and how to apply in the following sections.
The Artistic Jury’s editorial for 2023
The members of the Artistic Jury · Jean-Michel Guy, Lucho Smit, Kitt Johnson, Roman Müller, Molly Saudek, Johnny Torres, Elena Lydia Kreusch, Julia Christ
We understand circus to be an ever-evolving art form, nourished by a continuous engagement with the world and by its blurring of rigid genre definitions. Circus creation is a vibrant art practice that encourages its practitioners to push myriad boundaries, physical and conceptual; to renew and revolutionise its methods, and to perpetually challenge its own tenets.
We believe that circus has the power to inspire, entertain and challenge audiences of all ages and cultures, to rouse emotion and provoke conversation. We see circus authors’ potential to be forces for good in the world, to confront our assumptions and prejudices, to engender unity in diversity.
We aim for circus to be an inclusive form that allows artists of all backgrounds and experiences to share their unique perspectives. We believe circus should be accessible to everyone, and should reflect the heterogeneity and complexity of the world we live in. It should be a place where artists can come together to create and offer their work, and where audiences can be moved and transformed by what they’ve shared.
We do not adhere to the notion of invariability in the historical traits that would define the circus, nor any essentiality that would definitively differentiate it from other art forms. We recognize the current vitality of the circus, which is apparent in its inherent plasticity and the extraordinary variety of definitions given to it. Today’s artists tend to carve out for themselves a place in the continuity of circus’ time-honoured characteristics: the circus as a nomadic or anti-conformist lifestyle, as an architectural space, as a gravity-defying spectacle, as a list of uncommon skills, as popular entertainment, as a crossroads of marginalities, as the act of surpassing oneself, as a tool for social action, as equestrian theatre, as an exhibition of the bizarre, as a philosophy of freedom…
We do not particularly adhere to any of these visions of circus, nor do we reject them a priori. We do not exclude practices such as fakirism, magic, clowning that from time to time have found themselves relegated to the periphery of the circus realm. Nor would we exclude practices outside the historical circus domain, (who knows, astronomy, bakery?) provided the artists are able, in a substantiated manner, to inscribe their work within the living sphere of the circus arts.
We don’t deny there are certain recurrent discussions: the relative importance of texts, choreography and images in some works presented to this jury can lead us to proclaim, “this belongs to the realm of theatre, dance, fine arts rather than that of circus”. As varied, protean and inclusive as the circus may be, however open-minded we as a jury may be, we are today more intrigued by that which deepens the form of circus rather than expands it, without ignoring that expansion may, in itself, be a form of deepening.
We encourage authors to seek out their own unique voice, to not fear the taking of artistic risk, to move beyond normative aesthetics, to not allow themselves to be limited by outside expectation, to surprise us.
We hope for circus works that are unapologetically:… radical, humble, deliberate, touching, benevolent, grandiose, sincere, beautiful, monstrous, profound, archaic, urgent, feminist, empowering, welcoming, reckless, tender, poetic, intelligent, anchored, gratuitous, weird, courageous, aloof, cheeky, beastly, avant-garde, adrift, poetic, shocking, experimental, post-apocalyptic, obscure, ecological, disquieting, vital, queer, guileless, innocent, callous, unhurried, true, rash, clear, transformative…
We promote a subjective artistic standpoint and the exploration of otherness at all levels: dramaturgically, scenographically, technically, conceptually.
We are committed to supporting the development and growth of circus as an art form, and to fostering an inclusive and supportive community of artists and audiences. We will work to ensure that circus has a strong and vibrant future, and that it continues to captivate and inspire audiences for generations to come.