SAUMUR, France (Reuters) – Inside a packed circus tent in central France’s Loire valley, Ukrainian acrobat Anastasiia Mazur delights the gang along with her balletic routine from a suspended ring.
Mazur, 31, fled her homeland weeks after Russia invaded, certainly one of practically a dozen acrobats, clowns, jugglers and contortionists who responded to a French theatre director’s provide of refuge and the prospect to placed on a present to lift consciousness of the warfare.
“I’m right here and my household is in Germany,” Mazur mentioned in an interview in between rehearsals. “The warfare would not cease and we would like extra folks to learn about it. I hope it’ll finish quickly.”
The newly shaped troupe has known as itself ‘zirka!’, that means star in Ukrainian. Some left family members behind in Ukraine, others arrived with their youngsters and belongings they might carry.
The present is an exhibition of hope and freedom, its organisers say. In some acts, the performers put on military-style camouflage fatigues and drape themselves in their nationwide flag.
“The present is about telling what’s at the moment occurring in Ukraine in a light-hearted method,” mentioned stage director Gerard Fasoli. “The viewers could make up their very own model of the story from what we give them.”
Vyacheslav Iroshnikov mentioned he had agonised over leaving his nation in the face of Russian aggression. In the tip he and his companion, a fellow circus performer, fled along with his two youngsters.
“Half of me (was) like ‘OK, it’s a must to keep’ and half of me (mentioned) ‘OK, you’ve household, it’s a must to maintain it’.”
(Reporting by Stephane Mahe; Editing by Richard Lough and Richard Chang)