Pt 8 – Chills at the Phare Ponleu Selpak Circus

Monday, February 22nd, 2016 continued…

Scorpio dropped us back off at the hotel and would return later in the evening to take us to the circus. We’d grab vegetable rice and split a side of fried mushrooms across the street at “Monorom Garden,” before relaxing in our room the remainder of the afternoon.


At 5 pm, we met out front for Scorpio to take us to the “Phare Ponleu Selpak Circus”. The place was originally a safe haven for underprivileged children and young adults to use art and the free education provided to get out of poverty, as well as for social and psychological development. The circus was officially created in 1998 to help with the more challenging students who needed more of a physical outlet to channel their energy into. We were impressed by the student artwork on display. There clearly was a lot of talent and skill developed here! We waited patiently in line as early as we could to get good seats.


This show was called “Chills” and it commenced with girls doing a rhythmic dance with sticks. A lot of fancy footwork was involved which reminded me a lot of jumping rope as a kid.


Then it proceeded into a goofy skit where a group of boys flirted with one of the girls performing in the band until a ‘ghost’ appears doing impressive arial silk acrobatics.


The boys kept repeating that their teacher was dead, their teacher being the aerial silk guy, and I couldn’t decipher whether they wanted to catch the ghost, or run away from him. In brief, it was a slap stick comedy with juggling, balancing acts, and fire stick dancing.


The arm strength of these kids was remarkable! I must have said “Wow!” over twenty times during the show. I was thoroughly entertained! We shared Scorpio’s tuk tuk with a few others who had also enjoyed the show before being dropped off in town.

Jump Back to Part 7: Dysentery, Motorbikes & The Well of Shadows

Jump Ahead to Part 9: The Bamboo Train, A Bat Temple & Lok Lok


Start from the Beginning at Part 1: Tips, Hotel Swap & Cheap Beer in Phnom Penh

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