We were lucky enough to secure some tickets to a workshop held at Pitlochry Theatre that would give us insight into Circus skills and performance. It was an early start for the group, as we had to leave at 8.30am in order to be in Pitlochry on time. The morning of the workshop all the service users were here on time, there was a feel of excitement, and nerves in the room, as we all did not know what the interactive workshop would involve. As we were picking up a service user on route, we waited to discuss the purposes and objectives for today until we arrived.
Some service users appeared anxious when arriving as we entered a room full of children but we soon found out that there was two groups one for adults and one for children. Upon entering the room we were introduced to the director of the Wizard of Oz production and the Dance Captain for the whole production, we felt honoured to have them spend the next hour and a half with us.
We split into pairs to learn a small part of a dance, which is in the Wizard of Oz production. They slowed this down dramatically for us, as when we watched the leaders perform at the correct speed, it was far too fast for us (without lots more practise)! This proved difficult for some service users that struggled with coordination but each service user supported their partner and helped them to learn the steps.
Next, we were going to learn some basic aerobics, used in the art of Circus performing. We were told that trust in our partners is essential when Circus performing. We were given a couple of exercises to do that would determine if we would be able to support our own weight as if we were able to support our own weight, we would be able to support another person’s. Due to the physical demands of this part a couple of service users were unable to participate but all the other service users got very involved, putting them outside comfort zones, trusting their partner and invading each other’s personal space.
In the transport returning back we discussed the obstacles that people overcame and how they felt with putting their trust in each other. The general feeling in the group was very positive and the group were keen to try more workshops in the future.
After being taught a few different moves to try out, we finished off the session with a warm down and a stretch. When we gathered as a group to discuss the activity, all service users mentioned that they enjoyed it and were able to ask questions to the leaders about their experiences and roles in the production.