Affectionately known as ‘Fruities’ the students are aged from 8 to 19. Each brings individuality, talent and flair to the Flying Fruit Fly Circus – one of the world’s leading youth arts companies.
‘Our job is to make sure these young people who turn from children to young adults under our roof, can have a successful career as a performer and potentially as our next generation of cultural leaders,’ said Richard Hull, Flying Fruit Fly Circus Executive Director. ‘Another key goal is to innovate and to promote the art form of circus in Australia.’
The full time students attend a special academic program at Wodonga High School which is delivered in a purpose built facility. It offers a dynamic curriculum that weaves creativity through each core subject and highlights the importance of arts in education, according to Marg Leddin, Wodonga Middle Years College Assistant Principal.
‘Taking a STEM approach to the arts has been an absolute goldmine here,’ Marg said. ‘We maximise the student’s engagement by allowing them to be creative and express themselves. They're very kinetic learners and we very much adjust our teaching to suit their needs.’
The education program ensures students have career options – whether as a performer or in another field altogether. The success of the program can be measured by the many graduates who have carved out careers nationally and internationally, according to Flying Fruit Fly Circus Artistic Director Anni Davey.
‘These kids are at the top of the game. Our aspiration is that they graduate career ready, so that they can join an ensemble with Cirque du Soleil if that's what they choose, or Circus Oz, or some of the independent companies,’ said Anni.
Watch the video to see just how talented these young performers are:
The Flying Fruit Fly Circus is one of eight national elite performing arts training organisations funded by the Australian Government to support Australia's thriving creative economy.