Farewell to Creative Director Penelope Bartlau

Women’s Circus says farewell to our wonderful Creative Director Penelope


From Penelope:

Hello all,

My time at Women’s Circus has been incredibly rewarding. The team I work with in the office and the circus community have been a constant source of inspiration and learning. I have been so lucky to have been encouraged and supported to create such a broad scope of works over the past 3 years – works that have included: In 2017 Night Circus – a site specific immersive circus work & Art House Party at Post Industrial Design – both presented at Due West Festival; Wool – for One Night in Footscray, and our spectacular cabaret Mask – an absolute highlight! 

2017 started with Fluidity, a promenade-style circus work for the Women of the World Festival. In 2018 I directed our end of year cabaret PLACE, and Glow – for Geelong After Dark, as well as delivering The Inclusive Ensemble Project with Weave Movement Theatre.

This year, Devon and I travelled to Sydney for the Circus Conference in February, representing our community and the work that we do. With Sophia Constantine I developed a new work Drag Storytime for Midsumma Festival, and with Franca I developed a stilt-walking ensemble which is now on the local festival circuit providing professional stilt-work opportunities to our members.

Across 2018 and through until now, the greatest “jewel in the crown” of my time with Women’s Circus has been the development and presentation of The Drill.  Artistically ambitious, and challenging notions of what circus can be, The Drill is – and will remain – a career highlight of mine. None of this work – these beautiful creative works, would have been possible without the brilliant team in the office – Nor could these works exist without the dedication, creativity and spark that the Women’s Circus members and community provides.

Thank you so much everyone at Women’s Circus for a fantastic 3 years. I leave on a high and will see you all again very soon at Women’s Circus.


Women’s Circus sends our love and warmest wishes to Penelope for the future. Thank you for your dedication and vision. We will miss you greatly!