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New Victory Blog

The New Victory Blog is a place to learn more about New York's theater for families and the shows we produce. Find out what we do and what we're passionate about—exploring the arts as a family.


Though they first met at the National Centre for Circus Arts, the friendship between the creators of Barely Methodical Troupe's Bromance has taken them far beyond the bounds of academia. 

Louis and Charlie first laid eyes on each other during school auditions in 2010. Charlie reminisces, "I still remember Louis' solo piece about the evolution of man—surprisingly conceptual, I thought, for a big guy that does parkour for a circus audition."

 

Charlie Wheeller Charlie Wheeller in the Cyr wheel Photo: Chris Nash
After they were both accepted, Beren joined the team. As soon as Charlie saw him fly, he realized that Beren was a "magical dude." Charlie immediately wanted to train with him. He comments, "There's a great saying, 'Never be the best in the room.' I still always enjoy being onstage with Beren to simply witness the magic."

Beren has equally glowing things to say about "Chiseled Charlie" or "that fresh-faced Justin Beiber lookalike." He loves his energy and "knew from the get-go that deep down we're nearly the same person."

During the journey to his first day of school at the National Centre for Circus Arts, Beren sat directly in front of Louis on the ferry. So, his first impression was, "...why is this huge man following me?" He says, "The rest was history and I'm all the better for meeting him."

When they first began working together, it seemed like an odd pairing. Louis elaborates, "Beren came from a martial arts and tricking background, Charlie from breakdancing and I came from parkour and it was this combination of influences that initially informed our movement style, and still does to this day." 

Beren agrees that that this variety of style helped to fuse their trio, "Myself, Charlie and Louis instantly stuck together because we were different from our classmates, who came from the circus and gymnastics worlds. Not knowing any of the circus jargon, we just threw ourselves around relentlessly until we had some snazzy moves under our belts."

There's a fourth member of the troupe who quickly stepped into Bromance when a shoulder injury sidelined Louis—Arthur Parsons. Dubbed "Endearing Arthur," by Beren, who attributes Arhtur's charm to his infectious positivity. "People gravitate towards him like he has a magnetic force. Everyone wants a dose of that gentlemanly charm."

 

Beren D'Amico and Louis Gift Beren D'Amico balancing on Louis Gift during a hand-to-hand routine Photo: Chris Nash

Though not an original creator, Arthur switches out with Louis for certain performances and has become a central figure to the group. He says, "When I first met the Barely Methodical crew, they immediately seemed like they were old friends I just hadn't met yet. I turned out to be right!"

"There's a moment in the show that perfectly captures the idea of what a 'bromance' means to me. Beren and I look into each other's eyes as he's walking towards me. I'm filled with a feeling of love and warmth—in that moment, I know we're connected and looking out for each other."

Bromance initially started as a brief 30-minute piece, but producer Di Robson brought the "sensei of a director" Eddie Kay in to extend it into a full-length show. "Once we met him, we knew we were in for a fun ride. Eddie's humor was a complete joy and it became clear that comedy needed to become a strong foundation for Bromance to sit on," says Charlie.

Although Beren, Louis and Charlie lead exceptionally unique lives, Bromance has a story that makes it both incredibly personal, yet ultimately universal. Louis explains, "A lot of the situations in Bromance are drawn from our history as friends. However, they're situations that everyone has experienced at least once in their life."

The only question that remains is, "What's next for Barely Methodical Troupe?" Always excited to stretch the limits, Louis shares, "The feeling to stay fresh is less pressure and more ambition. One of the main reasons we do this is because we love pushing our skills and learning new things. We want to stay fresh for ourselves just as much as for our audiences!"

Consider this audience member rapt with excitement to see what new trick is up their sleeves. In the meantime, check out Bromance at The New Victory Theater, spinning on our stage until February 25! 
 
 
Bromance Thumb In Bromance, the astonishing talent of these three mates from London will make a hopeless bromantic out of you. Get your tickets today!

 
Posted by Beth Henderson

Travelling all the way from London, Bromance is an adrenaline-fueled circus show by the Barely Methodical Troupe, where handshakes become handstands and backslaps become backflips. Get to know the creators of Bromance—Charlie, Beren and Louis—as they share how they first discovered circus, what happens when a show goes awry and what "Love of Theater" means to them. 
 


Map of LondonWhere are you guys from from? 

Charlie Wheeller: Southampton, England, but I'm living in East London now.

Beren D'Amico: I'm from South London. The others look down on my neighborhood, but they're just naive about the vibrancy and character of the South!

Louis Gift: I grew up in Islington, in North London. It's way nicer than South London.

 

Charlie Charlie Wheeller
How did you first get involved in circus?

CW: When I was growing up, I loved getting involved in the local theater groups, including one that my dad ran. I was also a physical kid, who loved playing football, breakdancing and even gymnastics. When I was looking at universities, I applied to the National Centre For Circus Arts in London. There, I met the Cyr wheel and I haven't stopped spinning since.

LG: I had always been into flips and acrobatics ever since watching Power Rangers on Saturday mornings as a kid. I specialize in hand-to-hand acrobatics as a base, but all of us make a conscious effort to train in complementary disciplines. This helps keep the creative juices flowing and is also nice for a bit of a change up.

BD: I had a love for all things physical from the get go, since my parents toured with the legendary French circus company Archaos. I found tricking and fell in love. Eventually, I decided circus school made the most sense for me and trained in hand-to-hand as a flyer.

What was your most memorable onstage experience?

 

Beren Beren D'Amico
LG: Opening our second show, Kin, at The Roundhouse was particularly special to me. That venue is close to where I've lived for most of my life and it's also where I saw one of my very first circus shows. Standing backstage and hearing the cheers and support from the crowd as we ran on to start was a moment I'll never forget!

BD: Mine happened at the 2015 Edinburgh Fringe Festival during the 'Politicians' act in Bromance. We move and manipulate chairs, whilst sitting and standing. During one performance, a stray Cyr wheel smashed one of the chairs to pieces (thanks, Charlie.) We had to completely improvise. It was terrifying.
 
CW: It worked so well! We even talked about permanently adding it into the show.

What's the most daring trick you've tried?

CW: The craziest trick I've performed is a double somersault with an open out in the middle, back to the teeterboard. We've just started throwing flips from the teeterboard to human pyramids. That's where the risk factor rises another couple of notches. Fingers crossed! 

LG: The most daring trick I've tried was before I was ever involved in circus. I was on a beach in Cornwall, England, and I saw this cliff that seemed jumpable. I went up and looked over the edge to see how scary it was from up high. I spent about 45 minutes repeatedly running up to the edge to get ready, until I eventually went for it. It was about 30 feet so there was a nice bit of airtime. I'm glad I did it, but I wouldn't do it again!

What does "Love of Theater" mean to you?
Louis Louis Gift

CW: An audience leaves their age in the foyer at the theater, entering the auditorium as an ensemble, ready to be whisked up and electrified by the spectacle. We all remember that one show or that one evening, where we travelled home from the theatre a different person, filled with inspiration from indescribable magic.

LG: It means a love of drama and a love of fantasy. When audiences see a performance, it's an opportunity for them to enter a fantasy world in which the performers act out a situation where they can experience emotion and drama, without having to deal with the fallout. Having said that, sometimes what an audience wants isn't the drama or a message, but good, clean fun. I think it is important not to undervalue that!

BD: From the inside, it would be that mad adrenaline that comes from perfectly executing your hardest trick, successfully making a whole theater full of people laugh or the spontaneous moments that take you by surprise. From the outside, it would be seeing something that instantly makes you want to go and create something or train harder than ever before.
 
 
Bromance Thumb In Bromance, the astonishing talent of these mates from London will make a hopeless bromantic out of you. Get your tickets today!
Posted by Beth Henderson
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