Cara Vita: A Clown Concerto at the Vault Festival

Photos by Gary G Thomsen photos. Felicity Hesed and Clare Armenante (on violin) pictured

In ‘Cara Vita: A Clown Concerto’ actor, physical comedian and aerialist Felicity Hesed takes us on a moving, whimsical journey through life. From love, marriage through parenthood, there are many laughs to be enjoyed in this show, but it also has a poignant side, as our clown loses herself, and her music, to the demands of family life.

Felicity Hesed has a wonderful, engaging quality as a performer and great comic timings, which draws the audience into her world. She is joined on stage by Clare Armenante on violin, who is a comedic presence in her own right. Both are wonderful musicians, and the use of Brahm’s Hungarian Dances within the piece is beautifully realised.  However, Armenante is there to provide more than musical support, with a lovely “on a break” segment that charmingly brings to life her own very endearing stage persona.

For me, it is when Hesed takes flight, quite literally, in the aerial sequence, that the beauty of the show shines through. Choreographed by Elena Panova, Hesed is pure elegance and joy as she takes to the trapeze. This is a stunning segment, and it feels all the more extraordinary given our close proximity to the action. She does so much in a contained space. This is a really accomplished and uplifting piece that showcases Hesed’s skill on the trapeze. While we are given a taste of her skills as a physical performer through the earlier clowning segments, nothing quite prepares you for the complexity and fluidity of this routine.

Directed by Jeff Raz ‘Cara Vita’ brings together many different elements to create a charming, moving and funny piece about losing and finding yourself as a human, and as an artist. Hesed’s personality pours off the stage, as this story feels both personal and universal.

‘Cara Vita’ runs at Vault Festival until Sunday 16th Feb in the 21:20 slot.

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