Intermediate To Professional – 6 Months Full-Time Course


DATES: July – December 2021

  • A one-of-a-kind intensive training to become professional performers, teachers and circus professionals
  • Created by two renowned circus schools with 30 years industry experience
  • Graduates gain automaic entry into our 6 months INTERMEDIATE TO PROFESSIONAL course


“I wanted to tell you I started my new job last week at Cirque du Soleil! It’s my biggest dream come true and I wanted to send you a heartfelt thank you. If you hadn’t been such wonderful teachers perhaps I wouldn’t be where I am today!”

– Beth Alvarez


Ascension Byron Bay + Circus Arts Australia

We are a unique collaboration between two renowned circus schools from Australia and the UK and two circus families with over 30 years experience in everything circus!

Ascension Byron Bay founded Aircraft Circus in London, directly leading 17 full-time circus training courses to fruition, with students joining the worldwide circus industry including Cirque du Soleil.  

Circus Arts Australia is an internationally renowned circus school in Byron Bay that boasts a massive 12000 sq m indoor training space and venue with an incredible array of circus equipment. 

The INTERMEDIATE TO PROFESSIONAL course covers all the aerial and acrobatic arts and a range of exciting specialist skills with top performers. We offer the amazing grande volant flying trapeze which is in-house. There is ample opportunity to perform at showcases and at national festivals, and a teacher training certificate to support your performance work in the community. 

All this and you get to train in the paradise that is Byron Bay! Spend your weekends surfing or lying on the beach, a 10 minute walk from the school.


MODULE 3:  Solo module – focus on your favourite modality, create and perform solo act with mentor, culminating in FASTRACK TO PROFESSIONAL in-house cabaret. Level 2 Teacher Training Course in Circus Arts.

MODULE 4:  Show module – group show creation. Perform in a professional ensemble, using your physical, performance and production skills. Culminating in a full  ensemble graduation show, a showreel and professional headshots ready to launch you into the industry or elite training schools.

The Course runs 5 days a week 9.30-3.30pm with a minimum of 25 hours teacher contact time. Rehearsals and performances may require students to come in on occasional weekends.


The entry is by an audition at Circus Arts Byron Bay, Sydney, Brisbane and at an additional location in Melbourne. The audition dates will be released shortly.

Video auditions are open for overseas students. Please complete the enquiry  form below.

Our FOUNDATION TO INTERMEDIATE course course provides eligibility.

Age range:

This course is primarily designed for adults 18-35. There is no upper age limit.

Too young? You will be considered if you are between 16-17 and:

  • have a background in youth circus
  • have attended a stage school
  • have a background in competitive gymnastics

The course is open to Australian and international students. 

The INTERMEDIATE TO PROFESSIONAL course is currently a private training programme and fees apply. Enquire about the fees by emaling


The Foundation Module: focuses on conditioning and learning beginner skills across all disciplines as well as theory, complementary classes and tasters in specialist skills such as stilt walking and doubles aerials.

The Development Module: will be the continuation of that learning with less focus on conditioning and more focus on expanding the vocabulary on each apparatus. Alongside theory, complementary classes and more tasters in specialist skills such as fire and sideshow. The development module includes our Level 1 Teacher Training Course in Circus Arts (link). Performance skills are now introduced and you will be working towards your foundation graduation performance.

The Solo Module: sees the beginning of the intermediate course where you focus in on your favourite equipment or modality and create and perform your solo act and are assigned a mentor.  This will culminate in our Fastrack to Professional in-house Cabaret. The solo module includes our Level 2 Teacher Training Course in Circus Arts (link).

The Show Module: Show Creation and learning how to perform in a professional ensemble utilising all your physical performance and production skills. This show creation process will culminate in a full ensemble graduation show. This term also sees the creation of your showreel and professional headshots ready to launch you into the industry or elite training schools.


Aerial Core – Static Trapeze, Flying Trapeze, Lyra (Aerial Hoop), Silks (Tissu), Rope (Corde Lisse), Doubles and group aerials.

Acrobatic Core – Tumbling, Handstands, Acrobalance (partner acro), Trampolining, Wall Tramp.

Specialist Skills – Fire, Sideshow, Roving Street Performance, Juggling, Tightwire, Stiltwalking, Spanish Web, Cloudswing, Counterweight, Aerial Spiral.

Performance – Makeup, Costumes, Solo Act Creation, Ensemble Show Creation, Physical Theatre, Movement, Clown and Slapstick.

Technical Skills – Safety and Knots, Rigging Awareness, Show Production: prop, sound and light

Theory – Nutrition, Injury Prevention, Marketing, Showreel Creation, Journalling, History of Circus

Complementary Skills – Yoga, Weight and Resistance Training, Conditioning, Warm up, Flexibility and Contortion.

Teacher Training – 2 Intensive weeks covering skill specific warm ups, core aerials and core acrobatic teaching.


You will come away with a solid foundation in circus arts, a teacher training 1 certificate and a foundation show.

Performance and Career Opportunities:

We have plenty of opportunities to perform within the course:

  • at the Circus Arts Australia termly showcases and Night Markets
  • Bluesfest Byron Bay and Splendour in the Grass
  • Australian Circus Festival
  • as well as the opportunity to join the books of ACA – the Australian Circus Agency

Learning circus was one of the best decisions I ever made. Not only has it allowed me to achieve things I had never thought possible physically, but it has finally put me together with a family of wonderful misfits for whom  I have been searching for my whole life.

Laura Daniel

It’s difficult to find the words to convey what a phenomenal impact this has had on me. You need to experience it to know what I mean! I can’t rate it highly enough! The inclusive and accepting style and wholehearted encouragement have meant so much to me. I know I speak for many others.

Sue Yates

I wanted to tell you I started my new job last week at Cirque du Soleil! It’s my biggest dream come true and I wanted to send you a heartfelt thank you. If you hadn’t been such wonderful teachers perhaps I wouldn’t be where I am today!

Beth Alvarez


Unlike other schools, we cover a range of exciting specialist skills with top performers such as: grande volant flying trapeze, fire skills, sideshow arts, stiltwalking, roving street performance and specialist aerials such as aerial spiral and vertical dance.

The students will have extensive opportunities to perform both in-house and national festivals. You also gain a teacher training certification to support your performance work within the community.


Entries by auditions only. Either in-house at Circus Arts Byron Bay or via a video audition.

In person

You will be required to perform or demo your two chosen aerial or acrobatic skills –  no more than 3 minutes in length each. This can be presented as a performance or as intermediate skill demonstration with no less than five excellent technical moves or tricks. 

To enter the course you need to have 3/4 aerial skills at a good intermediate level for example: rope, static trapeze and silks as you will be joining the students who will have just competed the Foundation to Intermediate section of the the Fastrack  to Professional course: Your intermediate level is key as you will not be getting any revision of the  basics, as well as your demos on your preferred skills we will be assessing your level on Rope, Silks, Static trapeze, Hoop (Lyra), Acrobatics, partner Acrobalance, handstands and flexibility. 

Flying Trapeze is not a prerequisite but we would prefer you to have taken sessions on a grand volant before entering the course.

You will also be required to demonstrate a good grounding in acrobatics, strength and flexibility by demonstrating the following exercises:

– Pull ups, Leg Lifts, Rope Climbs, Press Ups, V Sits, One Leg Squats.

– Forward Roll, Backward Roll to Straddle, Handstand Forward Roll, Round Off, Back Flip (can be assisted), Kick Up to Handstand (hold) Straddle lever Prep, Pike lever Prep 

Flexibility: – Right Leg Split, Left Leg Split, Straddle Chest towards Floor, Box Split, Pike Fold, Bridge.

These exercises do not have to be demonstrated perfectly. We are looking for intermediate level. It is our job to help you perfect them through the professional course training. 

The auditions at Circus Arts Byron Bay will involve a tour of the space and an introduction with a Fastrack to Professional Course Director. We will also assess applicants strength and flexibility through a series of exercises and games. This will allow us to judge your suitability for the level of course entry and for you to gain a taste of what will be involved. 

This is followed by a private interview with a course director. This is your chance to discuss concerns or ambitions directly with the Fastrack to Professional team.

Video Audition: 

Please provide the following to camera:

– State your name, age and tell us why you want to join the Fastrack2Professional Course in Circus Arts (Intermediate to Professional Level)

– Demonstration of strength – aerial and ground based  – eg: Pull ups, Leg Lifts, Rope Climb, Press Ups, V Sits, Squats.

– Demonstration of acrobatics – Forward Roll, Backward Roll to Straddle, Handstand Forward Roll, Cartwheel, Round Off,  Back Flip (can be assisted), Kick Up to Handstand and Hold, Straddle lever Prep, Pike lever Prep 

– Demonstration of flexibility – Full Right Leg Split, Left Leg Split, Straddle Chest on Floor, Box Split, Pike Fold, Full Bridge.

– Three skill demonstrations in any circus, ground based or aerial skill at an intermediate level. This can be three short routines performed and choreographed to music or simply three skill demonstrations with no less than five good technical moves,

– We are looking for technical ability, strength, flexibility, passion, flair and professional artist potential. Please remember this is an intermediate course so we are not looking for ‘advanced’ skill but you will need to demonstrate a solid foundation across the board. For example an audition in Partner Acrobalance , aerial silks and contortion demo would suffice. 

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