Circus: Culture for the Millions
The first circus, as we know it today, took place in 1768 when a crowd gathered around a ring formed of stakes and rope in London. Its roots, however, touch upon many cultures. Whether presented on a stage or in a ring in the classical style, in the words of Ernest Hemingway, the circus is an 'ageless delight.' Young or old, rich or poor, east or west, north or south, Circus reaches all of us.
Circus has long been part of human culture in many parts of the world. As noted by Mr. Ján Fígel, European Commissioner for Education, Training, Culture, and Youth in a speech to the circus community in 2009, the importance of Circus in society can be seen in the works of artists and intellectuals who also have been allured by its poetry. A copy of Commissioner Figel’s speech can be downloaded here.