Riku Lievonen

Director, Cirko Center
interviewed 23 August 2016 in Helsinki —

Opened in 2011, Cirko is a residency centre, venue and home for circus in Finland. The building is part of a larger creative quarter, Suvilahti, the development of which, after being hampered by the impact of the financial crisis, has started to ramp up again. Next door to Cirko a former gas storage building is planned as a roundhouse venue focused on music and youth work (it would be expected to attract 400,000 visitors in its first year); meanwhile, a little down the road, construction has begun for new blocks of offices, a shopping mall, and apartments for 17,000 people. Already Cirko runs a year-round programme of work at the centre, supplemented by an annual festival, Cirko Festival, and is the main presenter of contemporary circus work in Helsinki and Finland.

Key Ideas
Doubling down on video

For their marketing, Cirko have chosen to heavily emphasise video — partly in reflection of the fact that circus is a visual art form, and should put its best foot forward, but also because 'there are not many famous names in circus'. Without a reputation to pin marketing on it becomes all the more important to give potential audience members a taste of what they'll actually see. In some cases Cirko will make trailers for the company, or else cut them down from immense seven-minute highlight reels. ('No one wants to look at that.')

Venues + Festivals
Marketing & social media
The competition for the performing arts
Venues + Festivals
Selling tickets
The future market
Venues + Festivals
The future