Tilly graduated from Circomedia in 2017. We spoke to her about her plans for her career as an aerialist. 

1. What circus experience did you have before you came to Circomedia?

I didn’t have much circus experience before coming to Circomedia at all! I was in a youth dance company in London called Shift from twelve to eighteen and the children’s choir Finchley Children’s Music Group, which is how I knew I wanted to be a performer! When I knew I was going to audition for Circomedia, I did a few evening trapeze classes at the National Centre for Circus Arts. 

2. What attracted you to the Circomedia course?

I was recommended Circomedia by a family friend who went here back in 1996! I went on the open day and was immediately drawn to the course because of its emphasis on integration theatre, movement and circus and generally create well-rounded performers. I also loved the welcoming atmosphere, and the reassurance that I could be accepted onto the course with very little circus experience. 

3. When did you decide to specialise in aerial? And why? 

I think I knew I wanted specialise in aerial when I found out I had got on the course. It felt like a natural progression to go from dancing on the floor to dancing in the air! And this desire to do trapeze was confirmed pretty much as soon as I started the course. I can’t really say why, I just fell in love with it!

4. How has Circomedia helped you develop as a performer?

Circomedia has helped me develop as a performer by giving me the tools to experiment. It’s such a safe space, it makes you feel able to try new things or play with ideas in performance, that might not necessarily work but are instrumental in your development as a performer! I’m not as worried about getting everything perfect as I was when I first started- which has allowed me to feel freer and hopefully make more interesting work. 

5. Why did you decide to stay on for the BA? 

I just felt there was so much more to learn and that two years at Circomedia just wasn’t enough! I was also really excited by the modules you take on the BA from watching my friends in the year above me. In particular, I felt the Practical research module and making a final major project would be so beneficial for my career after Circomedia as they really help you grow as a creator and performer. 

6. What’s next for you?

I’ll definitely stay in Bristol and carry on training. I hope to perform as much as I can to begin with and teach. I’m particularly interested in being involved in integrated work with disabled and non-disabled performers, and bringing circus to people that wouldn’t normally be exposed to it. I’d also like to devise my own shows and may be one day in the more distant future form my own company!