25 Live: A night at the circus

The Parlotones are once again joining creative forces with Zip Zap Circus to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Cape Town’s very own iconic Circus Academy.

#25LIVE is directed by the combined talents of Brent van Rensburg (Zip Zap co-founder) and Kahn Morbee (Parlotones). It promises to be a night of wonder, combining the comedy and awe-inspiring feats of circus with all the band’s home-grown hits. You do not want to miss it!

Event details:

Dates: Performances are on 30, 31 August and 01 September 2017.

Time: 19:30.

Venue: Artscape Theatre Centre, Cape Town.

Tickets: R250 available at Computicket or via Artscape-Dial-A-Seat 021 421 7695.

VIP Tickets: R1000 (which include hospitality throughout the evening as well as fabulous hampers and artists meet and greet) are available from Zip Zap directly: Jillian on 021 421 86 23 or jillian@zip-zap.co.za.

For more information about Zip Zap visit their website.

Zip Zap Circus School recognised for stellar community work

[CAPTION] Founders of Zip Zap Circus School, Brent van Rensburg and Laurence Estève, were awarded the highest Rotarian honour for the work that they do in the Cape Town community: the Paul Harris Fellow award. The Rotary Club of Claremont presented the award to the Zip Zap founders on Tuesday, 29 November 2016, in recognition of the number of underprivileged children and youth that have benefited from the circus school programmes over the years. From left to right: Brent van Rensburg, Laurence Estève and Ian Robertson. 

“Zip Zap is daring children who do not have much to dream,” says Ian Robertson, president of the Rotary Club of Claremont. “When we see how many young people have taken hold of those dreams and turned them into a reality with Zip Zap’s help over almost 25 years, awarding the founders with the Paul Harris award was an easy decision.”

Estève and van Rensburg were humbled by the award, “Zip Zap was born out of a love for circus and a passion for young people,” says Estève. “To be recognised for following our passion is such an honour. I love my job!” she concludes.

For more information about Zip Zap or to find out how you can support them, visit www.zip-zap.co.za

Find them on Facebook www.facebook.com/zipzapcircus.

For more information on Rotary Club of Claremont and the various community projects and initiatives they are involved with, please visit http://claremontrotary.co.za

Zip Zap inspires youth at the World AIDS Day show in Khayelitsha

Zip Zap Circus School - Photo by Anne Barbotteau

CAPTION: Children from the Zip Zap Circus School entertain the crowd at the 2015 World AIDS Day show in Khayelitsha. This year’s theme is “ACT NOW: TEST & TREAT!” Photo: Anne Barbotteau [High-resolution image available on request]                                                                                                                                                                        

Zip Zap Circus School will entertain locals at an action packed, free event on World AIDS Day, Thursday 01 December 2016 at the O.R. Tambo Hall, Govan Mbeki Road, Site B. in Khayelitsha from 14:30. The event, now in its twelfth year, is a highlight on the local calendar.

A procession will start at 11:00 from the Ubuntu Clinic, and the O.R. Tambo Hall doors will open at 11:30. Community members will start the event with a variety of performances, including theatre, gospel singing and dance. The Children’s Radio Foundation will also attend the event. The Zip Zap show will feature trampolines, trapeze, juggling and acrobatics performed by children between the ages of 8 and 19 years old from Zip Zap’s Intermediate, Simunye, SOS Children’s Village and Dare to Dream projects.

Zip Zap is a non-profit organisation that provides free circus training to children from all backgrounds. It also teaches them determination, hard work and to pursue a healthy lifestyle. Co-founder and Director, Laurence Estève says, “This show provides a great opportunity to address the stigmas around HIV/AIDS, especially amongst the youth. The children are directly involved in creating awareness in their communities and it builds their self-esteem as they teach others. The HIV/AIDS pandemic cannot be overcome without communities realising that they need to take precautionary actions to reduce the likelihood of contracting the virus and knowing how to treat it.”

The theme for this year’s show is “ACT NOW: TEST & TREAT!”. The message is simple: Know what your status is, and if positive, start treatment now. Antiretroviral (ARV) treatment is easily accessible and when it is taken as part of a daily routine, it helps to keep the virus under control.

The show is presented in partnership with Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF – Doctors Without Borders), Treatment Action Campaign (TAC), Gearhouse, the Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation, City of Cape Town, Western Cape Government, Children’s Radio Foundation, Kheth’Impilo and the TB/HIV Care Association. Cirque du Soleil has been supporting Zip Zap’s social action since 2002 and funds the outreach programme in Khayelitsha by organising various benefit shows around the world. For more information about Zip Zap or to find out how you can support them, visit www.zip-zap.co.za. Find them on Facebook www.facebook.com/zipzapcircus.

Siyabonga Swelindawo – former Zip Zapper paying it forward

 

CAPTION: Siyabonga Swelindawo’s life changed when he joined the Zip Zap Circus School at the age of 11 in 1999. Now the 27-year-old professional juggler, and SA’s Got Talent semi-finalist, is helping transform other youngsters’ lives through an after school arts initiative of the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport. [Photo credit: Zip Zap Circus School]

 

Swelindawo describes his childhood, growing up in Khayelitsha, as a rough juggling act. Over weekends he was sent to stay with his aunt when adults at home would drink too much. He ended up living with her permanently while attending Eluxolweni Primary School. It was at this stage that the young boy joined the Non-Profit Organisation, Zip Zap Circus School. As he learnt to excel in the art of juggling, his dreams of becoming a professional soccer player turned to that of circus star.

 

Juggling opened up his world and for the next eleven years, Swelindawo was part of the Zip Zap family. As a professional performer and Zip Zap instructor, he went on tours to Spain, Switzerland, Germany, France, Belgium and Australia, not to mention performances all over South Africa. “If I wasn’t involved in the circus I don’t think I would’ve travelled to those places,” he says, adding that a highlight was meeting and performing on stage with Miriam Makeba in Holland. After finishing school he moved into Zip Zap’s House in Observatory – a safe, subsidised accommodation option for Zip Zap’s professional performers and trainers who have no alternative place to stay.

 

While busy with circus life, Swelindawo studied Electrical Engineering at the College of Cape Town and graduated with a Diploma in 2013. Despite an attractive job offer in this sector, he chose instead to sow back into Cape Town’s poorest communities using the juggling skills learnt at Zip Zap.

 

Now Swelindawo is working full time for the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport, heading up the juggling code for the Mass participation; Opportunity and access, Development and growth (MOD) programme. This initiative provides sporting and arts activities to more than 40 000 children from over 300 disadvantaged and underserved schools in the province. “We work with the children from after school until 18:00, the idea is to keep them busy and out of trouble. The programme also gives rising stars the opportunity to hone their skills and possibly turn professional in a particular sporting or arts code.” Swelindawo is proud of the young protégés in the juggling section he manages: “These children, who I started teaching in 2014, are now juggling like crazy! Give them two more years and they’ll be right on top,” he says.

 

Laurence Estève, co-founder and Director of Zip Zap Circus School is just as proud of Swelindawo as he is of his own charges. “It is an honour to keep in touch with the Zip Zap alumni who were some of our first circus stars. They are now thriving as adults, leading fulfilling and successful lives and excelling on and off stage. The impact Siyabonga has through his job working for the province is just one part of Zip Zap’s success story.”

 

To make tax-deductible donations to Zip Zap, visit the website www.zip-zap.co.za or contact 021 421 8622 or donate via Thundafund here. Find Zip Zap on Facebook www.facebook.com/zipzapcircus and check out the Zip Zap YouTube channel here to find out more.

Circus unites diverse performers as one

CAPTION: (above) Three of Zip Zap Circus School’s top performers entertain crowds with their phenomenal juggling skills at the various performances. From left to right: Masixole Mbambatho, Lizo James and Mosuli Ntshonga. [Photo credit: Zip Zap Circus School]

Being part of a circus such as Zip Zap provides performers with many opportunities to develop skills that express their unique artistic talents in an entertaining and fun way while in the company of fellow performers. “A circus is a social activity that brings people from diverse backgrounds together. It provides performers with the opportunity to learn from fellow performers and it is very inclusive, anyone can join the circus,” says Laurence Estève, co-founder and CEO of Zip Zap Circus School. As South Africans celebrate Heritage month in September, Estève elaborates on how a circus contributes towards building the heritage of a country such as South Africa, “Various art forms and styles are welcomed at a circus: from dancing to storytelling, stick fighting to climbing, and gumboot dancing to jumping. Many of these art forms are part of South African cultures, the cultures of our performers. This makes the entire experience so much more enriching.”

Zip Zap was founded in 1992 with the intention to bring about social good and positive change through the medium of circus arts. Since then, two more social circus schools have been founded by two of Zip Zap’s very own graduates. The Sisonke Social Circus was founded in 2011 when community members felt a need to integrate children of the diverse communities in and around Stellenbosch and the Boland area. “Sisonke” is an isiXhosa word meaning “we are together”. The Tim Megaw circus in Cologne, Germany was founded in 2009. “The beauty of a social circus is how it brings diverse people together and transforms them into one family. A circus is about teamwork and it teaches life lessons while building trust, humility and dedication. It is also about having fun and working together to put on the best show possible,” explains Estève.

Masixole Mbambatho showcasing his juggling skills at Zip Zap Circus School.

Two of Zip Zap’s top performers have each changed their destinies by choosing to become involved with Zip Zap at a young age. “I moved from the Eastern Cape to Khayelitsha in Cape Town in 1998, where I attended school. During a performance in Khayelitsha on World Aids Day in 2006, I was amazed by the Zip Zap performers and I immediately wanted to join them,” says Masixole Mbambatho, one of Zip Zap’s best jugglers. Mbambatho became involved with Ibhongolwethu, Zip Zap’s outreach programme in Khayelitsha and on a weekly basis, he learned how to do circus acts. From 2008 onwards, he became actively involved with Zip Zap and after matriculating in 2011, he joined the Dare 2 Dream programme and started training as a professional juggler. “Today I am teaching other children circus skills and I love what I am doing, the team is really great! I enjoy travelling for shows and during my time with Zip Zap, I have visited Germany, Spain and Wales. Zip Zap has provided me with a new future as some of my friends, who did well at school, are still at home without work. I am able to impact other children’s lives now too and it feels great,” he continues.

“What I love about the circus is how we all look after each other like a true family, no matter where you come from or what your background is. For me it is very uplifting to be a part of Zip Zap,” concludes Mbambatho.

Lizo James joined Zip Zap when he was eleven years old, and in that same year he performed in his first international show in Denmark. “Thanks to my involvement with Zip Zap, I have had the incredible opportunity to work with international circuses such as Cirque Phénix in France and Cirquons Flex in Reunion Island. My years with Zip Zap have taught me the importance of being responsible, making the right choices and setting an example. Masixole used to be one of my students!” says James. “I want to encourage our youth to never stop believing and to work hard at achieving your dreams.” James is one of the leading performers in the La Pli I Donn show taking place on 21 September 2016 at the Zip Zap Circus Dome.

To make tax-deductible donations to Zip Zap, visit the website www.zip-zap.co.za or contact 021 421 8622 or donate via Thundafund here. Find Zip Zap on Facebook www.facebook.com/zipzapcircus and check out the Zip Zap YouTube channel here to find out more. Tickets for the La Pli I Donn show is available at www.zip-zap.co.za. Tickets cost R160 if purchased online and R180 if bought at the door. The show is taking place on Wednesday, 21 September 2016 at 18:00 at Zip Zap Circus, Founders Garden, Jan Smuts Street, Cape Town.

Backstage with Zip Zap Circus School co-founder and CEO Laurence Estève

CAPTION: This women’s month Zip Zap Circus School puts the spotlight on its co-founder and CEO Laurence Estève. [Photo credit: Anne Barbotteau]

“When you see a child succeed, overcome a fear or a disadvantage, or just smile, things become simple,” says Estève, reflecting on what has driven her passion to co-found and lead one of the first social circus schools in the world for the past 24 years. “I have persisted because I’ve seen how it has helped so many children and how much joy it has brought to so many people,” she adds.

Estève founded the Zip Zap Circus School in Cape Town together with her husband, Brent van Rensburg in 1992 with the intention to foster social change through the medium of circus arts. Life skills and professional circus acts have been taught to children from all backgrounds at no cost. In the last financial year over 1 000 children, many from disadvantaged areas, received circus training and more than 95 000 people saw Zip Zap perform live. Estève humbly admits that she prefers being behind the scenes, rather than under the spotlight. “Brent is the public figure and I am the back bone at Zip Zap,” she says.

Zip Zap and Estève’s own contribution towards using the circus arts to unify young people and build communities has not gone unnoticed. Zip Zap received the Business Day Award for Arts Education in 2001 and in 2005 the Circus School was a finalist in the Proudly South African Bridge Builder of the Year award. The following year Zip Zap won Sappi’s Ideas that Matter award.

“When we started Zip Zap in Cape Town in 1992, I saw so many gaps that needed to be filled and was happy to participate in the rebuilding of the nation,” says Estève who was born and grew up in France. “I’ve always felt welcome in South Africa. I don’t see South African, or French or race or religion, I just see youngsters.” In 2012 Estève was awarded the Knight of the National Order of Merit for more than 15 years of exemplary public service by the French President and in January next year she will join an esteemed judging panel with some of the most acknowledged ‘circus people’ in the world at the Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain in Paris. “I am extremely honoured to have been invited and am super excited about going to watch the best acts in the world and score them,” she said.

In her position as CEO of Zip Zap, Estève leads with a vision and passion for children. A great deal of patience, excellent communication skills and the ability to juggle incredibly tight financial budgets are also required for the role. Seeing happy children make positive and constructive changes in their own lives is the most rewarding part of the job. Estève adds that some of her most special moments are when Zip Zap alumni send her a wedding invitation or pop into the dome to greet their circus family. As with any NPO there are challenges and for Estève, this centres around finances: finding donors and managing the day-to-day details with insufficient funds, making it hard when Zip Zap employees are not paid what they deserve.

A personal highlight for Estève was in 2002 when Zip Zap performed at the international circus festival in Monaco. “There we were, in the heart of the circus world; Wandisile Mtshula was carrying the new South African flag at the opening ceremony and our first professional troupe performed for Prince Raynier – what an honour.” Another special memory was when Estève personally convinced the organisers of Cirque de Demain’s international circus competition to include two Zip Zap performances in their 2007 competition. Zip Zap duo; Kagisho Arnold Mutlane and José Baptista do Rego, went on to win the prize for the best comedy bench act, beating the Italian, Russian and American performers. “They were booked for the next four years in professional shows across Europe after that. I was over the moon with pride and joy,” says Estève.

When asked what would make her day, she is quick to explain: “There must be a person out there who wants to support Zip Zap financially over a three year period? I’d love to meet that person. Our yearly budget is so small for a big corporate and Zip Zap has so much to give.”

Check out the Zip Zap YouTube channel here to find out more.

To make tax deductible donations to Zip Zap, visit the website www.zip-zap.co.za or contact 021 421 8622 or donate via Thundafund here.

Find Zip Zap on Facebook www.facebook.com/zipzapcircus.

Creating second chances for children at Zip Zap

 

 

 

 

 

CAPTION: For many children from disadvantaged areas in Cape Town, a trip to the circus is a pipe dream. Zip Zap is changing that, one child at a time, with the Second Chance Project which opens up a whole new world of possibilities. [Photo credit: Anne Barbotteau]

Earlier this month, 67 Grade 3 learners from Elnor Primary School in Elsie’s River travelled in a sponsored Golden Arrow bus to the Zip Zap dome in Cape Town for a fun and educational outing where they learnt basic circus skills. At the end of the workshop they were given a short performance by the instructors where they could see what hard work and years of circus training can bring.

More than 1000 youngsters from 27 primary schools and children’s homes in underprivileged areas of Cape Town will participate in Zip Zap’s Second Chance Project this year.

“The circus is an excellent intervention tool for youth-at-risk because it provides a safe and fun platform for children to learn important life skills like discipline and team work,” says Brent van Rensburg, co-founder of Zip Zap. “This programme is about inspiring youngsters from the roughest parts of Cape Town, where gangsterism and drug abuse are the norm. The project enables them to consider totally different and wonderful ways in which they can develop skills that can lead to professional careers in the future,” explains van Rensburg.

Zip Zap, a registered Non-Profit Organisation founded 24 years ago, has helped many of Cape Town’s brightest young circus stars to obtain professional circus contracts on internationally acclaimed circus stages around the world.

Even before the children, aged eight and nine years old, arrived at the Zip Zap dome they were buzzing from the simple adventure of a bus trip. Varity Witbooi, their Grade 3 English teacher explains, “Some of these learners have never been to town before and just showing them well-known landmarks on our way to Zip Zap was really exciting for them.”

At Zip Zap the learners split into groups and tried their hand at various circus activities under the watchful eye of Zip Zap’s instructors, many who come from similar backgrounds to the learners. The morning, full of activities, included: performing tricks on a trampoline, walking the wire on a tightrope, hanging upside down on a trapeze, juggling, and doing cartwheels and handstands with acrobats. Children smiled broadly and laughed with delight as they lined up to take their turn on each apparatus.

“I have never been to the circus and have only ever seen performers on TV,” says Geneva Goliath, a Grade 3 learner. “These tricks aren’t as hard as they look, you just have to try, it is so much fun,” she explains.

For another learner, Vincent Chaima, his favourite activity was learning how to jump on the trampoline, flip and land safely on the big, soft mat. The young boy was impressed with the show put on by Zip Zap’s performers at the end of the workshop which left all the learners wide eyed and amazed. “One day I want to be the one who does those balancing tricks on a bicycle,” he says, adding that he laughed so much when the one juggling ball landed on someone’s head.

The Second Chance Project started in 2009 and last year, with support from the HCI Foundation, 733 children travelled to Zip Zap on Golden Arrow Busses for a total of 18 workshops. With support from generous donors, more children can be reached through the Second Chance Project and lives can be transformed.

Check out the Zip Zap YouTube channel here to find out more.

To make tax deductible donations to Zip Zap, visit the website www.zip-zap.co.za or contact 021 421 8622 or donate via Thundafund here.

Find Zip Zap on Facebook www.facebook.com/zipzapcircus.

Zip Zap to perform with Al Bairre

 

 

 

 

 

Zip Zap Circus School and classic indie pop band, Al Bairre are set to perform together for two nights only on 10 and 11 June 2016 at the Zip Zap Dome in Cape Town. Zip Zap’s intricately timed choreography of high-flying circus acts will complement the well-known ‘ice-cream of orchestral sounds of this local band.’ Tickets for the ‘Al Bairre in the air’ show are R160.

Fresh off of their highly successful UK tour, Al Bairre will, for the first time incorporate a live visual element into their show by performing with Zip Zap. The local indie pop band has performed at music festivals across the country, combining the sounds of cello, violin, keys, ukulele, bass, drums and guitars. They have also performed abroad in Cannes, Switzerland, Berlin and Amsterdam. “We are super excited to collaborate with Zip Zap. It’s going to be something completely new for us which takes the concert experience to another level quite literally, with trapeze acts above the stage,” says Nic Preen from Al Bairre.

Fans can look forward to experiencing well-known singles such as, ‘Bungalow’ and ‘Let’s Fall In Love Some More’ in a way that they have never experienced before.

The exclusive shows will take place on Friday, 10 June and Saturday, 11 June 2016 at the Zip Zap Dome, Cape Town from 18:00. Early bird tickets cost R160 and can be purchased from Quicket online before the events here. Tickets will also be on sale at the door.

“This is a not to be missed night out for Cape Town indie music fans. Acts to watch out for include trapeze, straps, scarf, cyr wheel, juggling and some surprises,” says Brent van Rensburg, co-founder of Zip Zap Circus School. The show is a free standing event. ‘Bring your cushions’ will add to the festive ambiance at the venue.

Zip Zap is a Non-Profit Organisation that aims to foster real social change by using circus art as a tool to teach young people life skills. Through the process of learning these skills and acts, they become eminently employable; for many at-risk youth, Zip Zap is a safe place for second chances at life. In 2015 over 1000 children received free circus training from Zip Zap, which relies on income from performances and donations. Al Bairre has come on board to help Zip Zap raise funds.

For more information, view a short promotional video for the show here.

To make tax deductible donations to Zip Zap visit the website www.zip-zap.co.za or contact 021 421 8622. Find Zip Zap on Facebook www.facebook.com/zipzapcircus.

Circus fun for everyone at Zip Zap’s first Family Fun Day

 

 

 

 

 

Zip Zap Circus School is hosting its first ever Family Fun Day on Sunday, 17 April 2016. Save the date for a superb day out for all; including brothers, sisters, mum, dad, grandparents, cousins and friends. Everyone is welcome to join the Zip Zap family at this jam packed day of fun! It promises to become an annual highlight for everyone who dreams of the circus and all the magic that it holds.

“This is your chance to be a little daring, try out circus skills and let the child in you perform tricks you only ever dreamed about when you were younger,” says Brent van Rensburg, co-founder of Zip Zap Circus School. “We’re so excited to welcome families to the Zip Zap dome for so much more than just a Zip Zap show,” he adds.

Circus workshops will be on offer where participants will learn how to walk the wire, do tricks on a trampoline, and juggle. A Nandos lunch and candy floss will keep energy levels high and face painting will put everyone in the mood for more entertainment. Circus games, a lucky draw of raffle prizes, four bungee trampolines and bouncing on a jumping castle are some of the attractions to expect at the Zip Zap Family Fun Day. “Of course a day at Zip Zap would not be complete without an electrifying show by our top performers and everyone gets a special goodie bag to take home,” says van Rensburg.

Zip Zap is a Non-Profit Organisation and a registered Public Benefit Organisation that was founded 24 years ago. “This Family Fun Day is a fundraiser for Zip Zap, guaranteed to be great entertainment with a good cause. We can only continue to work with more children at risk, keeping them off the streets and changing lives, when we partner with financial supporters. We are also looking for corporates to get involved in the special day,” concludes van Rensburg.

Family Fun Day at Zip Zap Circus School

Date: Sunday 17 April 2016

Time: 11:00 – 15:00

Venue: Zip Zap Dome, Founders Garden, Jan Smuts Street, Cape Town

Tickets: R1000 for a family of four and R150 for each additional child

Purchase tickets via quicket online: http://www.quicket.co.za/events/14852-zip-zap-family-day-17-april-2016#/

Book early to avoid disappointment as limited places are available.

 

 

 

 

 

To find out how you can get involved or to make tax deductible donations to Zip Zap, which has Section 18A status, visit the website www.zip-zap.co.za or contact 021 421 8622. Find Zip Zap on Facebook www.facebook.com/zipzapcircus.

Behind the scenes training for professional circus performers

A warm up jog of 2 kms, skipping, jumping, 75 squats, 50 pull ups, 50 sit ups and enough push ups until he can’t feel his arms – and that is only the first hour of Phelelani Ndakrokra’s daily training routine to keep fit at Zip Zap Circus School.

 

 

 

 

 

CAPTION: Zip Zap professional performer and trainer, Phelelani Ndakrokra on the cyr wheel. Left photo by Gregor Röhrig, right photo by Anne Barbotteau [high resolution images available on request].

While most people are amazed by impressive circus acts, few realise just how much hard work goes into preparing one’s body to perform so effortlessly. Hours and hours of daily, weekly and monthly training culminates into a few minutes of awe inspiring movements that keep audiences coming back for more.  “Hours are spent training for a couple of minutes in front of the audience; the payoff is when you’re in the air for those ten minutes entertaining the crowd. Their gasps of sheer enjoyment and applause make all the bruises, bumps and long hours training worth it,” says Ndakrokra.

Twenty-year-old Ndakrokra is one of Zip Zap Circus School’s professional performers and trainers who must be in top condition for the corporate and public shows put on throughout the year. These shows are a small fundraising tool for the Non-Profit Organisation which teaches circus skills at no cost to children from high risk communities, offering them an opportunity to dare to dream and make their dreams a reality. “Our professionals are a source of inspiration for the youngsters at Zip Zap,” says van Brent van Rensburg, co-founder of Zip Zap Circus School.

Ndakrokra’s daily warm up is followed by over an hour of intense training on one of his two speciality acts; the Cyr wheel and straps, both of which require extreme upper body strength. “I don’t need to do weights in a gym, I just hang on the straps with my hands above my head, then I pull my body up all the way until my hands are beside my hips – up and down at least ten times,” he says, explaining how he prepares before practicing even more complicated acts.

The diet of circus performers varies substantially, depending on body type and specialisation. For Sabine van Rensburg who grew up at Zip Zap and is currently studying a Bachelor’s Degree in Circus Arts at the National Circus School of Montreal, in Canada, it’s all about giving herself enough fuel to perform at her peak. “If my calorie intake is lower than what I’m burning then there is no way I can get through a day of training,” she says. Van Rensburg’s speciality is the scarf, also known as tissue. Hours of “high impact” training every week require her to “stay tight and focussed” while holding onto the scarf 12 meters above the stage. An hour long handstand class three times a week is another small part of her training routine to strengthen muscles in her wrists, arms and upper body.

 

 

 

 

 

CAPTION: Zip Zap professional, Sabine van Rensburg performing on the scarf (also known as tissue). Left photo by Neal Kernohan, right photo by Irene McCullough. [High resolution images available on request]

To book professional circus entertainment for your event, to find out about upcoming shows or to make tax deductible donations to Zip Zap visit the website www.zip-zap.co.za or contact 021 421 8622. You can also donate online: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/help-build-zip-zap-circus-academy#/. Find Zip Zap on Facebook www.facebook.com/zipzapcircus.

About Zip Zap Circus School

Zip Zap Circus is a not for profit social school that was founded in Cape Town in 1992, to inspire young people and help build a new culture of peaceful coexistence in South Africa. Working with a diverse community of children from all backgrounds, Zip Zap helps children to ‘dare to dream’ and learn to make those dreams a reality. Zip Zap’s programmes are all free to participants, with financial and material support coming from individuals, organisation, corporations and foundations. In South Africa and the world, Zip Zap is recognised across Governments, Ministries of Education, Tourism, Arts & Culture and private societies, as major contributor to the development within the iconic ‘Mother City’ and providing sustainability of the circus arts in South Africa.