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The 7 Props That Aerial Acrobats Use to Amaze Audiences

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

If you’re trying to find breathtaking entertainment for your next event, look no further than aerial acrobats. Suspended high above the stage—or the audience—these talented performers defy the laws of gravity to delight and astound the crowd below. From dancing to dueling, aerial acrobats can do things in the air that most people can’t manage when both their feet are planted firmly on the ground. 

During their sets, performers rely on props to elevate the act and push past the physical limitations that might otherwise stop them. Here are some of the most popular—and jaw-dropping—apparatuses that support aerial dancers and duelers:

1. Rope

The rope that aerialists use is called “corde lisse,” which is French for “smooth rope. Available in a variety of styles, including braided, twisted, and tubed, rope allows skilled acrobats to perform complicated sequences that include lots of quick drops. With gravity on their side, aerialists using rope can gain a lot of speed, keeping the audience on the edge of the seats. 

2. Silk

Silk, or “tissu,” refers to a long piece of flowing fabric that’s attached to the ceiling (or the roof of the stage) at its midpoint, so two strips hang down on either side. While aerialists who use silk can complete sequences that are just as breathtaking as those performed on a rope, they can also descend slowly with grace. Watching silk performers is often mesmerizing, as they know how to entrance the audience with the rippling fabric. 

3. Lyra

A lyra is an aerial hoop that’s typically made of steel. The ring is large enough for acrobats to sit inside it as if they were on a swing. Skilled performers can manipulate the Lyra so it spins rapidly while they complete intricate choreography inside it. 

4. Trapeze

There are several different trapezes that aerialists can use during a performance. The most common include static, dance, swinging, and flying. Every trapeze allows acrobats to climb, spin, and pose, but some also make it possible to swing and jump. 

5. Strap

Aerial straps are flat pieces of fabric that hang down from the ceiling. They’re much thinner than “tissu,” and most performers agree that they’re the most challenging apparatus to use because they provide such little support.

6. Hammock 

Sometimes called the “aerial sling,” the hammock is configured much like a trapeze, with its two ends connected at a single point on the ceiling. Instead of a platform, however, it’s comprised of a sturdy piece of fabric. Performers can swing, spin, and hang in gravity-defying poses when using the hammock.    

7. Other Performers 

Aerialists will often use other performers as “props.” In addition to supporting one another during complex choreography, they can also catch, throw, and counterbalance their partners when using the apparatuses mentioned above. If you want to wow guests at your next event with aerial acrobats, turn to Zen Arts for talented performers from around the world. A corporate entertainment company in Los Angeles, we help businesses and individuals host unforgettable productions for occasions of all kinds. To request a quote for your next party, Contact Us Today!