The Epicurious Wanderers!

Phare, more than just a circus!

Helen and I have been to several circus shows over the years from the local old school shows at home to Cirque du Soleil but nothing compares to Phare, the Cambodian Circus.image
Phare is a multi-disciplinary performance featuring dance, acrobatics, music and circus skills performed by young Cambodian people who have been impacted by the civil war and the poverty it left behind. As you wait for the show to start a series of videos explain how 8 young Cambodians returned home with a desire to help others to find there dreams and to develop self esteem in young people who felt life had no direction. They now run a school that teaches not just basic educational skills but dance, theatre, acrobatics, visual and fine arts as well as animation. Young people come and are given a new beginning with which to go out and show the talents and skills.

They have several shows that are performed throughout the year, we saw Sokha, a very powerful story. I’ve added a link here to a you tube clip.  Sokha is a child haunted by visions of the atrocities and destruction by the Khmer Rouge. Her memories and the surreal weave with myths and facts. Cringing in darkness, consumed by her fears, Sokha discovers her strength and resilience, and gathers all her determination to fight despair. Thanks to her trust in human nature, her choice as an adult will be to believe in social reconstruction by youth using art as a healing and solidarity factor between generations.image
Amazing circus techniques and powerful visual arts, accompanied by live traditional and original Cambodian music, reveal the long term affects suffered by post-war victims while maintaining a strong sense of optimism and triumph of the human spirit.image
Sokha’ s life is a metaphor of Phare Ponleu Selpak association’s beginnings. The 8 cofounders returned to Cambodia in 1994 after spending their childhood in refugee camps in Thailand, where they received art therapy to overcome the trauma. They opened an artistic and social centre in Battambang to rebuild their community and help others from exceptionally difficult social and economic backgrounds. Phare is now internationally famous for the energy, passion, and talent of its artists and quality of its productions.image

2 thoughts on “Phare, more than just a circus!

  1. Helen

    Seriously good. If you visit Siem Reap then look this up. It is an amazing night & you are helping these kids grow in confidence and make a difference.