Una Bennett’s Magic Touch: Aerial Rope Manipulation

MAGGOT GROOVIN’ from Una Bennett on Vimeo.

Una Bennett’s act is full of surprises, personality and rockin’ rope manipulation. About two years ago, Una asked me to teach her rope magic (the traditional kind with a small rope) and explore ways to adapt magician-like manipulation techniques to her tool: that fat ‘ol corde lisse in the sky. We didn’t have much time together (about 20 hours) and no budget for special materials. So we focused on basic technique: sleight-of-hand adapted to sleight-of-body.

Here’s a clip of Una essentially throwing her body into what magicians may recognize as a one-handed knot:

Morning magic! #cordegroovin #circusinternational

A post shared by Una (@unabennett) on

Magic technique was only one small part of Una’s extensive training at Montreal’s National Circus School. A full roster of amazing teachers — Johanne Madore, Sarah Poole, Eliane Domanski and more — helped her to build on the impressive skill-set and artistic personality that Una brought with her when she moved to Montreal. She trained with Circus Smirkus for years and in her hometown of Seattle too. I feel very lucky to work among these talented people in the circus community.

Now that Una has graduated and is touring the world, you can see her performing in Europe with Circus Monti’s Dreambox show.

If you go, watch her act closely. You just might see a knot appear, vanish or some other unique aerial rope manipulation that reveals a magic touch.

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