Jesse Scott – Co-Founder – jesse@casus.com.au

Jesse Scott has grown up living and breathing circus for as long as he can remember. Having worked with companies including Legs on the Wall, A4 Circus Ensemble, Candry Stripe Circus and The Australian Opera. Training and touring for 11 years with The Flying Fruit Fly Circus as well as touring international with Circa for 3 years; Jesse has a wide range of perfected circus skills and an in-depth understanding what it is to be a circus performer. A Casus co-founder, Jesse loves that Casus “gives a human face to circus, we don’t hide anything, we make it true – this is our world.”

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Natano Faanana – Co-Founder – natano@casus.com.au

Natano Fa’anana’s unique style of performance draws inspiration from his Samoan roots, fused with acrobatics, aerials and dance. He has achieved international recognition through his work with the award winning Polytoxic Theatre Company, as Co-creator and Performer in Briefs: All Male Review, and in his current role as Co-founder, Creative Director and Company Member of Casus. Natano entered the world of performing in his thirties and chose to learn from individuals rather than through schools or institutions which has given him a unique blend of different styles, movement and culture. “I love art, I love circus and I’m a story teller. Creating shows is my outlet. Instead of making our art on a canvas with a paintbrush we do it with our bodies.”

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Lachlan Mcaulay – Co-Founder – lachlan@casus.com.au

Lachlan McAulay never had to wonder what he would be when he was older. At the young age of 13, Lachlan joined The Flying Fruit Fly Circus, Australia’s leading youth circus, and immersed himself in every aspect of circus training. His dedication and talent for ground, aerial and ensemble work soon caught the eyes of his trainers. He spent his teenage years combining circus training with touring and performing throughout Australia and the world, an education he describes as “unique, exhilarating and very, very inspirational.” He continues his passion as a freelance performer and circus trainer before joining Circa. Lachlan is a “jack of all trades” in the circus world and is a highly skilled rigger, a ropes technician and prop maker.

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Kali Retallack – Ensemble member

Kali Retallack began training in circus with The Flying Fruit Fly Circus when she was a teenager. Kali went on to perform in Helpmann award winning Smoke and Mirrors, opened Emporium for Bas Lurmann, formed her own company A4 Circus Ensemble and has toured the world with companies such as Strange fruit and Acrobaitca. Kali’s passion for creating circus that fuses movement and skills in a beautiful and honest way that transcends any barriers between performers and audience there is no wonder why she is a perfect fit with the Casus Company.

Phoebe Carlson – Ensemble member

Phoebe began her performance journey in the South of Western Australia, where she developed her love of theatre, dance and circus. In 2011 this took her to the National Institute of Circus Arts, where she specialised in corde lisse, hula hoops and acrobatics.

Phoebe explored the independent circus scene as a co-creator and performer in Madhouse Circus, with whom she performed 5 seasons around Australia. She then went on to work with After Dark Theatre on the show “The Barbaroi”. In 2015, she also toured with contemporary circus company “Circa”.

She is enthused by toying the limits of the human body, how different bodies move together and what meanings an audience take from these interactions. As well as the links between different art forms and how they can be intertwined to tell a story or send a message.

Mayu Muto – Ensemble member

Mayu is a circus and physical theatre performer with a strong background in Ballet and Contemporary Dance. She specialises in creating conceptual circus/physical theatre work using unconventional aerial apparatuses, and she is particularly passionate about creating work that derives from ideas and concepts. As a culturally diverse artist, she often investigates and creates work that is relevant to her cultural identity as a Japanese woman. She loves collaborating with artists from across various art forms and actively attends theatre workshops and improvisation workshops for a broader understanding in creative process and in performing.

Johnathon Brown – Ensemble member

John Brown is a proud Anawin man from Armidale, NSW in the New England region. He first started dancing when he was three years old and first came to NAISDA in 2013 and graduated in 2016. John has a passion to try out new things in life no matter how high or how dangerous it is. He is always striving to push himself in all aspects of his life and is always on the road to improvement.

Pearl Thompson – Ensemble member 

Pearl is a proud Aboriginal woman. From an early age she always wanted to perform. She attended the Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts (ACPA) from 2010 to 2014 and graduated with a Certificate III & IV in Diploma in Performing Arts. Pearl has performed at leading venues including The Sydney Opera House, Queensland Performing Arts Centre, Brisbane Powerhouse, Darwin Entertainment Centre, and the Judith Wright Centre for The Contemporary Arts.

As an independent artist, Pearl has explored different art forms and has recently fell in love with circus after completing the BLAKflip program with Circus Oz as well as the company’s Strong Women Program. Chasing Smoke is Pearls’ first circus show and she hopes to continue various artistic pursuits including exploring circus and creating new works by combining her knowledge of dance and theatre with circus.

Sarah McDougall – Ensemble member

Originally a volleyballer, Sarah ventured into the circus world seeking only a backsault for use in punctuating winning points! As she discovered the exciting things circus offered, the game soon slipped away and circus took hold. Her first steps into this world were through tumbling, manipulation and aerial, all of which she fell in love with, along with a taste for the hilarious and the absurd! Amusingly, despite being scared of heights, aerial work fast became her passion and she graduated from the National Institute of Circus Arts, where she specialised in Single Point Trapeze, Aerial Chains and Hula Hoops.

Shannon Vitali – Ensemble member

From a young age, Shannon Vitali dreamt of being on the stage. At fourteen, she began dancing at the Graham Academy of Dance in Far North Queensland, Australia. In 2010 she pursued a Bachelor of Circus Arts degree at the National Institute of Circus Arts (NICA) in Melbourne. Her passion for circus developed in her first year of NICA, where she specialised in contortion, Adagio (partner work), Risley (Human Foot Juggling) and Aerial Acrobatics.

Since graduating NICA in 2012, Shannon has been performing professionally in the circus industry. She has performed for corporate functions, cruise ships and for world renowned circus companies, such as Circa. She is now currently touring with Casus.

Harley Mann – Ensemble member

Harley Mann is a Waka Waka man from Melbourne Victoria. He has been in and amongst the circus community for the past 15 years working as a student, trainer, performer and director. As a performer he specializes in aerial Corde Lisse and is still pursuing this discipline at the National Institue of Circus Arts as he studies his Bachelor. Harley has been performing casually for corporate functions and has also worked in productions including Insomni_Air and Chasing Smoke.

In 2017 Harley developed his own independent circus company Na Djinang Circus and directed their highly successful first show Social Staples. 

Ally Humphris – Ensemble member

Ally Humphris is a proud Wakka Wakka woman with a strong commitment and connection to her Aboriginal culture. Ally has studied dance and fitness with professional experience as a circus performer. As a student at the Aboriginal Centre for Performing Arts Brisbane, she was part of the Opening Ceremony of the 2013 Clancestry festival at the Queensland Performing Arts Complex. It was also in 2013 that Ally joined the Blakfip program at Circus Oz.  Ally has performed in the Brisbane Festival Opening Ceremony and in 2014 she was part of an all Indigenous ensemble in Corked Up at the Melba Spiegeltent. In 2017, as part of Blakflip, she had the honour of being in the cast of Chasing Smoke which she now continues with Casus Circus.

Jack Sheppard – Ensemble member

Jack Sheppard is a Kurtjar performing artist Based in Melbourne. He works in the mediums of experimental movement, physical theatre, circus, installation, and writing. He studied at NAISDA Dance College and at WAAPA’s Aboriginal Theatre course. His unique style of performance is inspired by the idea that light comes from darkness, healing comes from trauma, and acknowledges this as a form of alchemy that can change us for the better. Jack relates this back to the experiences of Indigenous Australian’s who live in a violently imposed religious Western construct, which has oppressed every aspect of their liberation as human beings. He promotes his opinion that an emergence of strengthening will continue to grow from within us through taking back and changing our narrative. The moods of Jack’s work are usually dark, erratic, raw, comedic, and hopeful. He considers his artistry as a practice of ritual, ceremony and medicine in the forms of contemporary cultural story telling. His recent work: The Honouring – Physical theatre piece with video installation and text, Choreographed by Jack Sheppard; Wild Australia – A roving installation with spoken word poetry, written and devised by Jack Sheppard; Chasing Smoke – a Blakflip and Circus Oz production – and collaboration between ensemble and Artistic Director, Natano Fa’anana; STOLEN – a physical theatre adaptation of Jane Harrisons play, STOLEN, choreographed and directed by Vicki Van Hout.

Lara Croydon – Ensemble member

Lara Croydon is a proud Gudjala Kabulba woman and an emerging circus performer from Brisbane. She began her circus career at Vulcana Womens Circus in 2013 and has since trained with Circa Contemporary Circus and Circus Oz. Lara participated in the BLAKflip program with Circus Oz from 2015-2017.

In 2015 Lara founded her independent production company PlayOn Productions. This company’s focus is twofold; to produce their own high quality circus performances and to support artists in the production and staging of new independent work.

Her credits include: Performing: Chasing Smoke (Yirramboi Festival 2017, Mullum Circus Festival 2017), NAKED (2high Festival 2016), Playgound Project (Bleack Festival 2016), CabaretRED (Woodford Folk Festival 2015), Learning to Love Gravity (Anywhere Festival 2015), Small Change (Wonderland Festival 2014), Directing: Tree of Dreams (Woodford Folk Festival 2017), Caution: Wet Floor (2High Festival 2015).

Dylan Singh – Ensemble member

Dylan’s life has always been around circus. His mother Tanya Lester introduced him to circus at a young age as she was a performer with the Flying Fruit Fly Circus in Albury, before moving on to perform with Circus Oz amongst other companies.

Dylan trained alongside his Mum, as well doing gymnastics since he was a young lad. He has also performed with his Mum numerous time and has been a street performer, busking all over the country. He is an ensemble member of Circus Oz as well as performer and co-collaborator on Chasing Smoke by Casus Circus.

Cluster Arts – General Management

Cluster Arts works with extraordinary artists to bring their work to the stage. We provide essential backend services to small to medium performing arts companies and independent Artists. With a passion for discovering and supporting unforgettable work, we are a networking and advocacy leader for Artists in Australia.