1930s China Circus - Wanchai Reclamation Grounds

Fri, 08/31/2018 - 08:46

The "China Circus" complete with entertainment, juggling and wire acts performed at the Wanchai Reclamation Grounds (forerunner to the Southorn Playground) in April 1931.

Source: This image came from Flickr, see https://flickr.com/photo.gne?id=44317179151

Date picture taken
1 Apr 1931


A description from page 12 of The China Mail, 1931-04-02:




Those in search of an entertainment with some quite novel features should visit the China Circus, which is showing daily on the Reclamation ground at Wanchai.

The object of the proprietors has been to get together an aggregation of distinctively Chinese acts, and in this they have been most successful. We are all of us familiar with the skilful manner in which the Chinese, even small boys, can manipulate a shuttlecock with their feet. But to see this art at its best, one should pay a visit to the Circus, where one of the performers transfers the shuttlecocks from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head, back again, and round his body with position wizardry.

There are jugglers of various kinds. One of them, equipped with nothing more than a heavy china bowl, provides ten minutes of excellent entertainment. Another one combines a little hand-to-hand juggling with billiard balls with a few tricks with a lighted lamp, and some expert knife-throwing. On the whole, the juggling reaches a level not often seen here.

Another amusing turn is provided by a siffleur, who imitates animals and birds with astonishing realism. This act proved highly popular with all sections of the audience last night.

In addition, a clever Chinese girl give a wire-walking act, and there are two good double and flying trapeze turns.

The tumblers and balancers give all the usual tricks, with quite a number of new ones, in neat and effective manner. They were received with rounds of well-merited applause.

There are several interesting animal performances, the clowns, with their bears, being especially popular with the children, who were also much diverted with the solemn antics of the elephant.

Every effort has been made to make the interior of the “big top” cosy and comfortable. The attendants are most courteous, and the show succeeds in being something original in the circus line.