Melbourne International Arts Festival Review: NoFit State’s Lexicon circus is a crowd pleaser

Looking for a dosage of engaging, crowd-pleasing and talent filled entertainment? NoFit State‘s Lexicon has everything you need. Dripping in nostalgic, early European costumes and a magnificent live band playing immersive and often gothic folk music, the circus embraced originality whilst still holding dear to it’s roots. 250 years ago a man by the name of Phillip Astley invented the Big Top and now NoFit State dive right into traditional circus with a contemporary twist.

Opening with flying school desks and acrobatics, the show was engaging from the beginning. Whilst Lexicon boasts being all ages, surprisingly the Thursday night audience was filled with adults. However, this sure didn’t spoil the fun! Despite a lengthy line to reach the bar, the audience giggled through impressive trapeze acts, unicycling taken to new levels, extreme juggling and general slapstick comedy with a cast bursting with vibrant personality. Quick-paced and full of a variety of contemporary takes on traditional circus acts, Melbourne International Arts Festival has picked a winner with this stellar performance.

By far, the highlights of the show were the array of spectacular aerial acts with a trapeze, human mobile and rope performances that stunned from above and the incredible live band. The music set the stage, drawing the audience in and twisting our hearts with every daring leap and tumble and the talent of the band and performers alike was beyond imaginable. A drunken women stumbled through the audience, climbed up the metres of ropes and dumped her boots below before launching into an array of twists and tumbles and elegant movements without a harness nor safety net and like me, the rest of the audience sat open mouth and exhilarated. Each performance was entertaining and exciting.

The performers are mad, hilarious and full of character and the entirety of the show was so engaging that time slipped away. The Royal Botanic Gardens were alight with life and no doubt many of the audience left satisfied and tempted to learn how to juggle.


For more information or to get your hands on some tickets, head on over to the Melbourne International Arts Festival website HERE.

This reviewer attended the performance on the 4th of October at The Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne.