Who we are and What we do

Circus Solarus is renowned for Roving performance, Environmental education, Community engagement at festivals and events. We entertain, educate and amaze.


About Us

The company is committed to transforming the everyday public space through street theatre, large visual imagery and community projects, Circus Solarus has built a reputation for creating contemporary carnival and lively comic performances.

The company’s skilled performers and visual artists can animate events in the unique Circus Solarus style, or work with groups from the community to tell local stories through art and performance.

As a not-for-profit social enterprise, we deliver high quality entertainment with a commitment to community development and engagement through the arts. We work with clients to create the best outcomes for their events whether they are corporate events, local festivals, museum entertainment or community projects.

For more than 2 decades, Circus Solarus has explored all aspects of the Theatre of Celebration - just look at the SERVICES section for the wide range of skills and experience our team of professional artists and performers can provide. If you don’t see what you want, call us - we can make the impossible possible.


Our History

We formed Circus Solarus in 1987 and began performing as a travelling Medieval style Arts and Crafts Fair in 1988. We created the performance and the Fairground and booked local artists and crafts people to sell their wares. We were dedicated to using our arts skills in community celebrations - performances, parades, and large environmental theatre using banners, flags, lanterns, giant puppets, costumes.

This eclectic mix of artforms still underpins everything we do: - drawings and sculptures become costumes; dreams turn into characters. A strange perambulating machine appears in one performance as a circus cart, then reappears in others as a percussion trolley or a dispensary pushed by the Doctors Solarus.

Every person who joins us influences our performances. We give preference to full time actors and artists and in this way Circus Solarus has supported many other arts professionals who are dedicated to their craft.

Circus Solarus developed into a flexible and responsive company, able to work quickly to a brief, theme to events and work in communities on a vast range of projects and across varied artforms. By the 1990’s street theatre had become more of a focus for us, yet we continued to work on Community Cultural Development projects, conduct imaginative children’s activities and workshops for parades and festival performances.

The last 5 years has taken us to festivals in the Middle East, developing street theatre performances on a huge range of themes, conducting children’s adventure games and producing pantomime shows.

Today, we are regularly called upon to produce and manage large scale festival projects, such as Alice Desert Festival Parade, SPIKEFEST parade and the VIVA LA GONG festival finale 2004. We welcome opportunities to collaborate with other individuals and communities.


Arnaldo Giordano

Owner / Director

Happier twirling his moustache than writing artists bios, imageArnaldo is naturally gifted as a comic performer, maker of props and in liaising with clients. One of the original founders of Circus Solarus, his comic performance and stilt characters, in both English and Italian are loved by audiences everywhere.

As he often says “If I leave them laughing, I’ve done my job.”
Whether in assembling costumes, making props or wiring the illuminated costumes and giant lanterns, his attention to detail is always impressive and he takes pride in doing everything well.
Prior to forming Circus Solarus in 1987, Arnaldo and Tricia were working as professional crafts people, exhibiting at craft shops and galleries throughout Australia, and creating masks for exhibitions, for theatre/ dance groups and craft expos, including the World Expos in Barcelona and Brisbane, and exhibitions in Newcastle Regional Art Gallery, Seymour Theatre and the Crafts Council Gallery.

Tricia Cooney

Owner / Director

Early experience in both costume and leather sculpture, combined with study of mythology, psychology and culture led me to working with Arnaldo Giordano in the early 1980s as a professional artist in wearable art and masks,creating costumes and masks for exhibitions, for theatre/ dance groups and craft expos, including the World Expos in Barcelona and Brisbane, and exhibitions in Newcastle Regional Art Gallery, Seymour Theatre and the Crafts Council Gallery.

In 1982, I also began to work on community art projects, creating giant costumes and puppets for large outdoor theatre and dance projects, again dealing with mythological and archetypal themes.(Mattara Festival, Sydney Festival, Homage to the Elements, Terrigal)

1988 With other artists working in a similar way, a professional street theatre/ theatre of celebration troupe, CIRCUS SOLARUS, was formed. For the past 15 years we have specialised in large sculptural costume-based characters, stilt costumes, giant puppets and working with local communities to create parade images and performances, as well as giving workshops in masks, costumes and stilts to art and drama students at High School and University level. Many of our costumed characters have a base in pre-circus European Carnival.

In recognition of my work in the arts, especially costuming, festivals and community arts I was awarded a 2001 - CHURCHILL FELLOWSHIP - Research and study tour to look at the carnival tradition in Europe (Italy, France and England).

The focus was to study the construction and decoration of large scale carnival costumes and community workshop organisation in European carnivals particularly in Viarreggio, Nice, Chalon Street Theatre festival, Notting Hill Carnival, Welfare State Lantern Festival and Urban Regeneration Projects,( Bolton and Liverpool.) visiting various artists from the different carnival traditions and returning by invitation in 2003 to work on parade costumes in 3 large UK community carnivals.


Previous and current clients


  • Olympics Sydney 2000
  • Festival of Sydney 2009
  • Alice Desert Festival, NT
  • Southside Festival, Port Kembla
  • Viva La Gong, Wollongong
  • Parramac Festival, Parramatta 2010
  • Festival of the Plains, Hay
  • Multi-cultural Festival, ACT
  • Bylong Mouse Races


  • Ironfest, Lithgow
  • Hawkesbury Carnivale
  • Tamworth Country Music Fest
  • Byron Bay Blues and Roots Festival
  • Kiama Jazz Festival
  • Scone Horse Week
  • Centenary of Federation 2001
  • Australia Day Council
  • Riverfest, Brisbane, QLD


  • Global Carnival, Bellingen
  • Florafest, Gosford
  • Tulipfest, Bowral
  • Mascon Festival
  • Manly Jazz Festival
  • Festival of the Winds, Bondi
  • Adelaide Arts Festival, SA
  • Spikefest, WoyWoy
  • Batlow Apple festival, Batlow


  • Singapore Arts Festival
  • Planet E!, Singapore
  • Samsung, Dubai UAE
  • Notting Hill Carnival, London,UK 2001,2003, 2008
  • European Capital of Culture Carnival, Liverpool,UK 2008
  • Summer Wonders, Qatar


  • Ulverston Lantern Fest, UK
  • Merseyside Festival, Liverpool, UK
  • Knowledge Village, Dubai, UAE
  • Summer Surprises, Dubai
  • Shopping Festival, Dubai
  • Dragon Mall, Dubai


  • Mercedes Benz
  • Amway
  • AJC Golden Slipper
  • Parramatta Eels
  • Sydney Swans
  • Fox Studios
  • Intercontinental Hotel, Sydney
  • Optus
  • Star City Casino
  • Macquarie Bank
  • The GPT Group
  • Telstra


  • Launch of Mix FM, ACT
  • Clubs NSW
  • Salvation Army
  • Variety Club Australia
  • Domayne, Alexandria
  • Rajon Music
  • Sydney in Bloom
  • Dairy Farmers
  • Lend Lease
  • Westfield
  • Danks Hardware
  • Integral Energy


  • Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority
  • Darling Harbour
  • UTS, Aust. Centre for Event Management
  • National Museum of Australia
  • National Maritime Museum
  • Powerhouse Museum
  • Sydney Olympic Park Authority
  • Campbelltown Regional Gallery
  • Casula Powerhouse
  • Lord Mayorâs NYE picnic
  • Sydney Observatory


  • Elizabeth Bay House
  • National Trust
  • Vaucluse House
  • Botanic Gardens, Sydney
  • UWS Theatre Studies
  • Northbridge Public School
  • Bligh Park Primary School
  • Port Kembla Primary
  • Granville High School
  • Kellyville High High School
  • Rooty Hill High


  • City of Sydney
  • Parramatta
  • Auburn
  • Bankstown
  • Blacktown
  • Baulkham Hills
  • Camden
  • Campbelltown
  • Gosford


  • Leichhardt
  • Liverpool
  • Kiama
  • Kogarah
  • Newcastle
  • North Sydney
  • Marrickville
  • Mosman


  • Manly
  • North Sydney
  • Penrith
  • Pittwater
  • Sutherland
  • Warringah
  • Willoughby
  • Wollongong
  • Wollondilly


Craig Gilliver Sydney Olympic Park Authority
Circus Solarus has provided Kids in the Park with many shows that never fail to impress. From circus skills to dinosaur hunts to space travel, their shows guarantee an adventure that actively invites the audience along - a wonderful, colourful and fun introduction to live performance for children that entertains adults as well, with a wry smile and cheeky grin.

The best review is the fascinated looks on the faces of the audience as they embrace the latest jaunt with the Solarus crew - their shows are playful and they encourage children to imagine - which in an age of digital reality, video games and DVDs, is recommendation enough.
Linda McDonnellBondi Junction Office - Waverley Council
I love watching the interaction between the characters and the ‘public’ –especially the children ... I can’t even begin to imagine some of our events and not having you participating in them, you bring life to them. Thank you all so very much.
BillyKellyville High School
I would like to thank you for training me on stilts and in physical theatre it means a lot to me. I am now riding on my unicycle very well and am trying to juggle while doing it. I am looking to buy some stilts soon as well. I don’t think I would be able to do half the stuff I can if you and Arnaldo hadn’t shown me. Once again thank you and I appreciate it.
Bronwyn Rosenberg Community, Events and PR Manager Parklands Foundation
I just wanted to thank you very much for such amazing entertainment yesterday at World Picnic Day. Your participation on the day made it such a better event than I could have expected, so thank you very much.