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Let your child become a high flier... NoFit State this week launched its new community programme offering youngsters the opportunity to get a taste of life in the circus. Head trainer Adie Delaney tells David Owens why youngsters love the classes that allow them to escape into another world.

Byline: David Owens

ow's your chance to let your child run away with the circus - for an hour a week at least.

NCardiff 's contemporary circus NoFit State this week launches its new community programme featuring classes for all ages and abilities.

The internationally renowned touring company runs a vibrant programme of circus classes in its city centre location on John Street with more than 40 circus classes available seven days a week.

Classes on offer are catered to all ages and abilities, with classes ranging from hula hoop to flying trapeze. The circus currently draws in crowds of both complete beginners and seasoned circus performers to its classes.

NoFit State's trainers feature highly skilled international circus performers, some of whom Cardiff locals may have seen when the company's critically-acclaimed show Bianco was performed in the Welsh capital earlier this year.

One of these is head trainer Adie Delaney. Originally from Tasmania in Australia she has been with NoFit State for seven years performing with the company on a succession of international around the globe. Now in her new guise she's helping to foster the circus performers of tomorrow as the popularity of circus skills classes rocket.

"We offer four different classes which are roughly segregated by age but are more to do with skill level and social groups," explains Adie.

"We start with the Ewoks, then we move up to the Wookies, you then come up to Padawan and then finally as you head towards later teenage years you have the Jedis."

And if you hadn't guessed already the Aussie is something of a Star Wars fan.

"I'm very much a fan," she laughs. "I put it to the kids what did they want to be called and they didn't come up with anything cohesive, the best they had was monsters, but they did start getting excited when I talked about Star Wars characters. So that was it I decided to over-rule."

Adie has been busy putting in place an age and ability banding that she believes will perfectly serve the needs of those youngsters attending weekly classes.

"With our new system which we've implemented from this week where we have similar age children with different skill levels they progress through achievement certificates. We also give them a free play session every term where the kids get to go for what they're really good at. Obviously because circus is so broad across the spectrum we do tumbling, we do acrobatics, we do juggling, we do tight wire walking, we do trapeze. We find some kids are good at some things, some excel at others, some at no so good at others, so they can specialise if they have a particular aptitude for one thing.

"It's about skill and it's also about social groups. Some kids attend with their friends, but in the old system if one of them turned eight for instance, they'd move up a group and wouldn't be together with their friends anymore. So under this new system we can keep them together. Basically our focus is on fun and enjoyment as well as encouraging learning through play, so we have a strong philosophy of wanting to keep everyone happy."

There is also plenty of hands-on tuition for the kids.

Adie explains: "We have a student to teacher ratio, so depending on the age of the younger kids the ratio is one to six and as you move up the age groups the ratios are one to seven and one to eight."

Uniquely classes begin with everyone together before they splinter into their various groups.

"They all play a big game at the start of the class with everyone


Adie Delaney, of NoFit State Circus which is offering a wide range of circus skills classes for all ages
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Sep 5, 2014
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