Photo: PR Times

Japan’s all new circus team ‘CIRQUEWORK’ debuts in Tokyo this month

By Connie Sceaphierde, grape Japan

If you’ve ever been lucky enough to witness the amazing acts of a Cirque du Soleil stage performance, then I envy you. The entertainment company travels the world, mesmerising audiences in more than 400 cities across 60 countries. With performances of such high stakes, it can be quite the challenge to get your hands on tickets.

But now, Japan has it’s very own version of the circus of dreams; CIRQUEWORK, based in Fukuoka is a circus creation team that gathers both domestic and international artists in an attempt to pursue unique entertainment full of originality and innovation through an eccentric fusion of acrobatics, dance, music, lighting, and video production.

This month, the team will be holding their world premiere performance in Tokyo. If you like to observe the true limits of the human body, determination and mind, then read on to find out what this night of performances will bring.


The crew’s first performance titled RENEW is based around the theme of "fashion and the near future." High-level performances by five experienced circus artists – who have worked with world famous circus companies, such as Franco Dragone, Cirque Éloize and Cirque du Soleil itself – are choreographed to transport the audience to a magical world where they can forget about reality and time.

Behind the performance choreography is world-famous aerial artist Shinagawa Mizuki. As part of the show, Shinagawa will perform her specialty act Aerial Silk as well as a synchronised display with 2 other aerial artists which has been developed specifically for RENEW.

A partial introduction to the show’s performers is listed below:


Mizuki Shinagawa – Japanese aerial artist who has been attracting the world's attention

An aerial artist from Tokyo, Shinagawa began performing aerial art at the age of 14. From 2015 she joined the circus school, École nationale de cirque in Montreal to further her performing career, and in 2019 she won the bronze award in the world circus competition Cirque de Demain – which was the first time an aerial artist had won an award in the history of the contest. Since then, Shinagawa has been flooded with offers from circus companies, and has appeared in various shows such as Cirque du Soleil, Cirque Éloize and Les 7 doigts de la main.


Shin Urawa – World-recognized Diabolo Specialist

A diabolo juggling specialist from Shizuoka City. At the age of 19, Urawa won the individual category of the national juggling competition. While studying at Tokyo University of Science, Urawa was invited to various circus festivals and events in Spain, Russia, Cuba, Israel, Singapore, etc. and after his graduation, he enrolled in the circus school École nationale de cirque in Montreal.

After graduating, Urawa toured the world as a member of Cirque Éloize and appeared in Cirkopolis. In 2018, he participated in the circus world competition Cirque de Demain and became the first Japanese medalist. In 2019, Urawa also participated in the Japan tour of Cirque Éloize"Saloon.


Jean-Yves Willems – Internationally famed multi-circus artist

A circus artist from Belgium who is currently based in Japan. Having taken part in both gymnastics and dance from a young age, Willems’ passion for performance was heightened when he began circus acts at the age of 18.

In 2015, Willems career was kickstarted when he joined the Belgian circus company ‘Pyronix Productions’ and performed in shows across Europe. Since 2017, he has performed as an acrobatic dancer for the world’s largest water show "The house of Dancing Water," which is directed by Franco Dragone – the stage art director of Cirque du Soleil.

The world premiere performance of CIRQUEWORK’s RENEW will be taking place on Oct 23 in Tokyo. Tickets and further information regarding the event can be found online.

First show: 13:30

Second show: 18:30

Location: Alternative Theater, Yurakucho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo

Scheduled performances: Aerial Silk, Diabolo, German Wheel, Swing Strap

Performance time: approximately 60 minutes

Admission fees (all seats reserved, tax included)

General – 4,800 yen

Under 15 years old – 3,200 yen

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© grape Japan

©2022 GPlusMedia Inc.

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The name is, um, maybe not the best. It's like, huh? Well, "cirque-work" sounds odd is what I'm trying to say.

And why is it CIRQUE WORK in the top poster but CIRQUEWORK elsewhere? And why all caps? It's not an initialization, acronym etc. Don't they know that ALL CAPS CAN BE ANNOYING?

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Wow, if it's anything like Cirque du Soleil I must go and see it. Once animals were no longer an item in circuses, the focus was on humans and they have been delivering fantastic entertainment fir years

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Seems like with a lot of things the Japanese market, rushed to give it just a name, how it sounds or what impact it leaves on the masses was not their priority it would seem. 

Wow, if it's anything like Cirque du Soleil I must go and see it. Once animals were no longer an item in circuses, the focus was on humans and they have been delivering fantastic entertainment fir years

True, which was the idea was the show was created in the first place. Looking forward to seeing it myself.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

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