Thursday, 29 March 2007


Reproduced with kind permission from Fritz Cartoons

Wednesday, 28 March 2007

Egon Erwin Kisch: Die Dramaturgie des Flohtheaters

Egon Erwin Kisch was a writer and journalist who developed a style of writing called reportage in the early 1900s. This combination of prose and literature is not journalism or fiction but is based on fact. Reportage books have more detail than a newspaper report but a style more similar to a novel than a reference guide. Egon was inspired by social authors such as Charles Dickens, Emile Zola and Maxim Gorki.

Whats all this got to do with flea circuses you ask?

In 1920 Kisch published a book called "Die Abenteuer in Prag" - "The adventures in Prague" which contains a chapter The dramaturgy of the Flea Theatres. It is possible that he read the reference to flea circuses in Dicken's "Boz".

I have recently aquired a copy of this book and will keep you updated as I translate the relavent pages.

Monday, 26 March 2007

Do fleas poop?

Do fleas poop asks the poop report. Watch this space, I'm sure I can find out from one of my fellow experts.

Tuesday, 20 March 2007

Les Puces Savantes

Today I recieved a Fantastic Fleamail from a Fine French Flea Fanatic.

Alfredo Panzani has been performing with fleas for over 10 years and tours France, England, Italy, Japan, Spain, Belgium, Germany, Israel and Canada. The fleas perform in a large colourful circus ring as shown below.

Photo by: Pierre Ruaud

The next performance will be at International Annual festival Of Success For Children HAIFA in Israel and then there will be performances across Spain in May.

The french for flea, "Puce" is also used for the colour puce which is a dark blood red colour.

For other performers near you see:

Thursday, 15 March 2007

Making little things

There are a few suppliers in the Flea Circus research library who can manufacture small parts for your circuses but you might be interested in making your own components.

How to Cast Small Metal and Rubber Parts by William A. Cannon covers all of the aspects of casting in Metal and Rubber that you could need from setting up a workshop to repairing casts to costing.

Thursday, 8 March 2007

What do trained fleas do when they are not performing?

Perhaps they would play in a tiny band using a tiny drum kit like this one from Biz (not Bez) on MySpace?

Biz advises me that you can pick these miniature drum kits up over the internet.

I found some at:

Tuesday, 6 March 2007

You can teach an old flea new tricks...

I had an email from a new flea trainer asking about what tricks Michael Bentine performed in his circus. Unfortunately the very short reference video I have of his performance only has a joke about a spec of dirty and the miss identification of a flea's gender. However we can guess from the layout of the ring that there was a ball rolling up a slope and a diving board.

Most days, I have my favourite search engines trained on the Internet looking for flea related topics. People have an amazing tendency to compare everything from Religion to Politics as being like a Flea Circus. However, I occasionally come across an interesting link or idea. Today the search engines highlighted an idea that I'd not heard before. A blogger suggested that a small model of Stone Henge could be used by fleas. I think this is a brilliant idea. The fleas could lift up the stones with little A frames and strings or slide them along on rollers. This should work with both real and magical circuses.