The audience was a reflection of the circus itself. Lots of clown people with too-big noses, droopy ears and vacant expressions trying to dissemble the system behind the seating. Standing around holding their coats and reading big signs directing them to “Reserved Section A” which, against all expectations was to be found both left, and right of center. As was “Reserved Section 1”. There were the requisite artist types with dreadlocks and rolled-wool clothing purchased at the Middle Ages Markt in Esslingen. Old ladies in expensive coats, and old men wobbling on canes, waving about glasses of proseco. Two wheelchairs, five children and a few shaved-head street criminal types. Were they there for effect or for my wallet?
It was a one-ring circus that opened with the Maestro handsome in his crimson velvet tails introducing the orchestra at eight o’clock in the evening. Just minutes after the three evenly-spaced but increasingly pleading announcements asking people to: “Please scoot to the inside of the row, without leaving empty seats - the house is sold out tonight” After which the audience to the left waited deafly for the audience to the right to begin. This resulted in absolutely no apparent change in seating availability as the next two hundred people streamed into the tent.
Including the 25 minute intermission, during which the audience was responsible for the entertainment, it was a three hour, nonstop, acrobatics, trapeze flying, balance act on stilts with four seals, a dozen pure-bred Arabian horses, and a Jack Russell Terrier thrown in for extra charm.
I don’t remember the last time I had that much fun.