Galway Community Circus 2021 Highlights

We can hardly believe 2021 is coming to an end! The end of a year marks a time for reflection. Despite another year of changing restrictions and many obstacles to overcome, we have accomplished so much. We've had another great year full of classes, trainings and professional development workshops, youth exchanges, conferences and so much more. 2022 will be another action-packed year as we celebrate our 20th anniversary, but for now, we reflect on some of our proudest achievements of 2021.

Circus School

  • 28 weeks of Youth Circus for 359 weekly participants.
  • 107 Social Circus workshops to 2248 participants with partners including Arts Alive, Galway Autism Partnership, GRETB, The Bridge Project to name a few.


  • Our second annual Mayhem Youth Circus Festival that reached 12,050 audience members over 6 days from all over the world.
  • ‘The Streets Are Ours’ shows in partnerships with Baboró International Arts Festival for Children, Galway Dance Project and Arch8.
  • Four Scratch Night shows produced by the GCC youth-led production team.
  • A Christmas Cabaret unlike anything you have seen before – a performance live streamed from our Circus Hall on the 12thof December.
  • Delivered a two-day international conference on the art of funambulism as part of our Creative Europe Co-operation Project ‘Wires Crossed – Head, Heart, Balance’ in partnership with Ecole de Cirque de Bruxelles, Şcoala de Circ and Université Libre de Bruxelles, with a digital audience of 143 attendees from 26 different countries.
  • Successfully completed our project ‘Wires Crossed’ as part of Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture delivering 95 public workshops for 1422 participants in Ireland, 93 days of professional training across Europe and created employment for 45 people. The legacy of this project is the successful development of funambulism programmes in eight European circus schools.

International Work

  • Represented Ireland internationally as the President of the International Youth and Social Circus Network Caravan. Coordinated two European Erasmus+ projects and partnered in two others - creating life-changing opportunities for artists and young people.
  • Hosted eight European volunteers from Turkey, Belgium, Spain, France, Italy and Slovenia on an 11-month residency funded by the European Solidarity Corps.
  • Our youth leaders took part in a youth exchange in Leuven, Belgium as part of the three-year Youth Leadership Programme ABCirk in partnership with Circus in Beweging, CIRQUEON and Cirkus LeGrando.
  • An artist residency with Finnish Artist Simon Llewellyn working with our membership toward their Christmas show.

Professional Development

  • Delivered four training for trainers courses for circus teachers and youth workers in partnership with Galway Mayo Institute of Technology, Dublin Circus Project and Circus Factory Cork, and two mentoring programmes on organisational development.
  • Offered 51 days of professional development workshops with artists and experts including Aisling Ní Cheallaigh, High Performance Productions, Simon Llewellyn, Pete Duncan, Caravan Network, European Centre of Funambulism, the Galway Community Circus team and The Wheel.
  • Continued our work with NUI Galway and 10 international university and circus school partners to build a degree course for circus teachers as part of the Erasmus+ funded ‘Circus++’ project.
  • Shortlisted in The Wheel’s 2021 Charity Impact Awards 2021

We continue to be forever grateful to our funders, members, partners and community who support the work of Galway Community Circus.

Thank you to our funders: The Arts Council of Ireland, Galway City Council, Galway County Council, Erasmus+ via Léargas, The Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, Creative Europe, HSE, Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture, The Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Creative Ireland, Pobal-Galway City Local Community Development Committee, Finnish Institute and The Science Foundation of Ireland.

Thank you to our networks Caravan, CircusWorks, Irish Street Arts, Circus and Spectacle Network, Youth Theatre Ireland and The Wheel for their unwavering support and depth of knowledge.

Thank you to all our members, their families, participants, audience members, artists, staff, volunteers, board members and partners for your support, friendship and continued inspiration.

Without all of this support and commitment towards Galway Community Circus we would not be in a position to continue to deliver such a real impact to our community and the sector in Ireland and beyond.