Berlin is an exuberant city. It’s fitting, then, that the German capital’s latest circus export – FINALE by ANALOG the company – should be so full of riotous vim. A dynamic, showstopping carnival, it’s everything a tentpole production like this should be: packed with lively and likeable characters, eye-widening feats and a musical score that’s both rousing and integrated into the performance.
And it doesn’t let up. The show’s title alludes to it presenting finale after finale, though that’s less of a strict brief and more of a philosophy. Each cast member is boundlessly energetic, possessing unique skills and enough confetti to make even the slightest gesture a grand triumph. They share a genuinely funny chemistry that the kids in the audience enjoy as much as the grown-ups, evoking the most playful of street buskers despite the show’s high-spec staging. A judicious use of light and smoke – often handheld by teammates – gives it a thrillingly tangible FX experience. Bit blends into bit as live drums and vocals performed by the cast themselves (Ena Wild, charming host and vocalist, is a marvel) motor the production along.
In short, it’s circus 101, done spectacularly enough that even those who’ve seen their fair share of Cyr wheels, Chinese poles and hoop-jumping will be transfixed. Honourable mentions go to a hand-balancing skit with a great twist, and the slickest bounce juggling routine you’ll see this year, guaranteed.
While not saying anything particularly profound, as a coherent gem of entertainment FINALE is a refreshing hour-long party-popper.