We all may know already about circus show or circus performance from Western culture that we learn it from books or the show on television. On the other hand, Khmer circus performance is a kind of art that has existed in Cambodian culture for centuries. There are some evidences of this art on some temples in Cambodia, especially the carving of circus performance on Bayon temple which is well shown that Khmer circus already appeared since Angkor period, which was last around 600 years.

 

Bayon temple 04 Face

 

The carving depicts the different forms of circus performance such as acrobats, contortionists, magicians, jugglers, dancers, clowns, and even animals such as snakes and monkeys. After having war for years, the circus performance was dropped off for a while and it started to be resumed when the country got peace and independence during the Songkumreasniyum era led by the late king, his majesty Norodom Sihanouk. Then, this activity was abandoned once again during the Khmer Rouge regime as it did not happen only on Khmer circus but also other forms of Khmer arts.

 

Circus performance carving 1

 

After the fall of Khmer rouge, everything was reborn and so was Khmer circus. In the meantime, there is an organization, called Phare Ponleu Selpak, that help children who suffered from poverty, abuse, and hurt by giving them social support, education, and art classes. Currently, tourists are able to see Phare, the Cambodian Circus show both in Siem Reap and Battambang province and this activity has become the popular thing to do that is highly recommended in Cambodia tour or itineraries for visiting Cambodia.

 

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This circus performance not only helps to earn fund to support the children in the organization but it also helps to preserve this kind of Khmer art.

 

Interested in this activity? Reach us @ www.trailtoangkortours.com and our team will respond to you shortly.

 

See you in Cambodia! `

 

 

Steven Lor - TRAILTOAngkortours and Travel

 

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