Tuesday, August 27, 2019

King Kong Company at the Big Top Live. Photo: Joe Evans

THE inaugural Big Top Live held in the city last week overcame a major last minute obstacle before entertaining thousands with five events.

The week-long festivities underneath a 45 square metre circus tent at Waterside car park began with Finbar Furey taking to the stage on Monday last and concluded with the Happy Mondays headlining a night of music on Saturday, with two madcap Bingo Loco events and a show from Waterford’s own Keith Barry in between.

Industry Entertainment’s Neil Kelly who organised the event said they were delighted with the crowds and the lack of any incidents whatsoever at each show.

“The diversity of the crowds from old to young. We really had a mix of everybody. A younger crowd at Bingo Loco, an older one at Finbar Furey and everything in between for the Happy Mondays on Saturday.

“King Kong Company stole the show with their energy. I don’t think Waterford will every experience the atmosphere of Bingo Loco on Friday night as well. It was insane.”

The spectacle was in jeopardy in the days, and even hours before the first event as the tent suppliers fell through on their earlier promises.

“On Friday we were told there was an issue with wind and on Saturday we were told that he had no tent and that he couldn’t do anything.

“We all started making calls and eventually I spoke to a guy that I knew, Wayne Courtney of the circus. His tent was up and he wasn’t able to take it down until Sunday. He literally stripped the tent in Navan to bring it to us and it arrived down at 8am the Monday morning and we started to build it. A usual two and a half build was done in eight hours.”

He added that they are hoping to build on this year’s success by increasing the number of attendees with bigger acts and a bigger tent – the smaller tent they had to draft in at the last minute ensured they lost an extra bar.

Having thanked all who were involved and came along across the week, he added that they will probably move the date, possibly to mid-September, as they don’t want to impact (and be impacted by) great events which are already part of the summer calendar in Waterford like Bluegrass.

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