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Join the circus

Last night we went to See the Circus here in our very own Smoky Bay* — and boy, did we have a rocking great time!

Circus Sóley is the newest show by Circus Íslands, which was started by Wally the Clown [aka Lee Nelson] who is arguably Iceland’s funniest import [from ‘Stralia] and also an occasional commenter on this blog.**

Apparently Wally Lee has a BA in clownage from some clown school somewhere — although if you saw his show, you’d think he had a PhD in it. Not only does he do some amazing stunts himself, he’s actually trained EVERYONE ELSE IN THE CIRCUS to do stuff like acrobatics and juggling while standing on someone else’s shoulders and hanging upside down in ropes and basically life-threatening stunts that have you screaming in your seat because one false move and BAM someone could fall on their head and break their neck in an instant.

I am not joking.

This is the first circus act ever in Iceland to the best of my knowledge, and Lee’s keeping it real, as he tells The Grapevine:

It frustrates me that so many theatre companies here sell their tickets for 3,500 ISK and up. They’re subsidised by the government, they get all this support and they still charge a fortune for their tickets. What about some bloody Filipino immigrants in Breiðholt? Do they care about them? I do. I want those people to come and have a good time in my circus. Sirkus Íslands is for the people, by the people.

Amen to that. Tickets are only ISK 1,200 and the show is only about an hour long, so you can safely take the kids. In other words, there’s no excuse — everyone who is in Iceland and wants to forget about THE BLOB and Kittygate and everything else for a while, head on over to Salurinn in Kópavogur and get ready for some thrills, chills and great entertainment.

* aka Reykjavík
** name dropping

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  • Sebastian March 29, 2010, 11:10 pm

    How can Circus Íslands charge less than their subsidized competitors? Do Wally and his team receive public funding as well? Nevertheless, sounds like excellent entertainment at a bargain price.

  • sigga March 29, 2010, 11:31 pm

    When will they be doing a tour around the country for us slobs that never go to the bay? I should actually ask them directly shouldn’t I – unless by putting this on your blog I am unofficially making you their agent…. probably not a job you are seeking- but then again, by putting this here it may come to Lee’s attention and he may answer…. You never know your luck in the big “blog”city.
    ps really envious of your trip to view the show at fimmvörðurháls and thanks for all the links and photos, Alda Kalda internet time saver…

  • Bromley86 March 30, 2010, 12:04 am

    I knew I’d seen that name somewhere. Turns out Wally had been to see you before you went to see him 🙂 :

    http://icelandweatherreport.com/2009/09/as-household-debt-shoots-through-the-roof-some-people-are-going-on-strike.html#comment-9501

  • TomThumb March 30, 2010, 2:20 am

    I visited your flickr photostream slideshow of your visit to Dyssekilde, Denmark. (On Alda’s Climate Change articles) I loved the homemade houses and the food looked delicious. What a beautiful place for children. Of course, for persons who like to work with their hands, it would be a paradise. Imagine being able to travel everywhere you need to on your bicycle! And, to witness the power of those people working as a group sends a very powerful positive message.

  • Andrew (the other one) March 30, 2010, 5:01 am

    Does Wally train members of parliament too?

    Clowns, juggling, balancing acts…

  • Svein March 30, 2010, 9:01 am

    And how is the sorting out of the Kreppa going? Don’t forget your audience out here.

  • Joerg March 30, 2010, 9:51 am

    Doing amazing stunts and training everyone else in the circus to do stuff like acrobatics and juggling – that rings a familiar bell. Could it be, that it was just a former show of Circus Íslands, in which Icelandic oligarchs performed, doing business and banking stunts and training everyone else to juggle with things like foreign currency loans? Unfortunately, in this former show somebody must have fallen on their head. I think, this current program sounds much more like great entertainment.

  • alda March 30, 2010, 11:24 am

    Svein – I trust you know I don’t get paid for writing this blog. If you would like to support it, there is a donation button located in the sidebar.

  • wally March 30, 2010, 11:32 am

    Wow Alda! Thanks!
    The sirkus recieves absolutely no funding. We pay everything cash in front and we dont make any money unless we sell our shows out. Not very Icelandic I know. We would like to tour Iceland and intend to do so in the near future.
    One of the main points of the circus is to make people not think of the Kreppa, fascinating how comments here invariably take such a fun subject as the circus and drive it back into these troubled waters.
    For the record the name is Sirkus Íslands.
    And you can become a fan here….
    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sirkus-island/43354813726?ref=ts
    Really glad you enjoyed my show and your families reaction is the reaction I dream of every family in Iceland having. It is awesomely satisfying watching dreams come true for the guys and girls in the Sirkus who have trained so hard to be on stage this week.

  • Pauline McCarthy March 30, 2010, 1:30 pm

    Hi Alda, thanks for the insite, definatly a place to take my kids even though they are teenagers now. In fact my youngest will be 13 on the 9th April and we are looking for some exciting venue for the party. I hope the sircus is still playing then and we can take all his pals to the circus. That would be brilliant!!

    Lee as for travelling the country. Here in Akranes we have the Irish days festival around the second weekend of July. That would be a perfect venue for your circus. I help Akraneskaupstaður with the Irish days festival so I could connect you if you want. Please feel free to contact me at soni@strik.is or 824-2640.

    LoVe Pauline

  • Michael Lewis March 30, 2010, 2:18 pm

    I really have to admire the effort, I think it takes quite a bit of courage. I guess if you only make money when you sell out: how to you plan for your pension? It is sobering. The price of the cirucs is aimed to allow all people to attend, which is great. However, at whilst I’m not a fan of big government, I would be a little suprised that local government can’t pony up a few ISK for this circus. After all, its things like that, that help attract tourists to Iceland.

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