Upskilling & Learning

Pirates of the Carabina are committed to broadening the audience for circus. We operate an exciting programme of training and workshop activities to accompany our performances, as well as running an ongoing mentoring and training programme for circus students.

Open Access Aerial Lessons in Somerset 

Get Fit and have fun, in a friendly and supportive workshop, led by Pirates of the Carabina directors Shaena Brandel and Barnz Munn. No experience necessary. Kids welcome. Contact us for further details King pole

Learn to FLY-Aerial Workshop 

Suitable for All (Age 7+ incl. Children, Adults, Grandparents and differently-abled)

Learn simple tricks and shapes in the air on the Aerial Hoop and Silks AND Experience the sensation of Flying! Have fun, build confidence, learn new skills and make friends whilst experiencing the fun of the circus … 

‘We appreciate your guidance from the design & construction (of a counterweight system) through to the detailed training processes. The generous sharing of your experience, expertise and knowledge has made it possible for us to expand the scope of circus skills we teach as well as taking our performances to a new level‘ Belinda Hultgren- Circus Arts Australia

Enrichment Activities

We aim to work with venues to provide a package of activities to develop new audiences and support promotional activities. These can include post-show discussions, meet-and-greets, special ‘flying’ lessons, basic circus skills, and a range of ground-based and aerial workshops designed for all levels – including those suitable for children age 8+, for the whole family to enjoy together, and master-classes for budding performers and theatre professionals (during the show’s run and, where possible, well in advance of the company’s actual performances.


Acknowledged throughout the international circus world as the originators of counter-weight aerial acts, as well as offering world-class expertise in tent and circus rigging, founding members of the Pirates of the Carabina company also offer specialist intensive masterclasses for experienced theatre and circus professionals. Please contact the company for more information.

How to Say YES! A practical training workshop for venues considering hosting circus
1/2 day / full day, practical seminar
With Barnz Munn and Shaena Brandel

Join Pirates of the Carabina, leading circus professionals and programmer of the Glastonbury Festival Circus Big Top, for this unique session looking at the practical, logistical and creative aspects involved in hosting circus and large physical theatre productions. Discover how you can say Yes! whilst meeting your legal requirements, supporting your programming targets and without stemming creativity.

Who is it for? Promoters, producers, theatre technicians, stage managers and programmers.

More Detail: 

Performer-flying and circus-rigging need not be as scary as it sounds. Pirates of the Carabina (POTC) are offering a 4-hour workshop to explain the technical challenges you may encounter bringing circus to your venue.

The aim of this workshop is to give people a greater technical understanding of circus acts and rigging. Using live demonstrations and practical exercises, this session will:

  • Review the different ground-supported & hung aerial equipment typically involved in touring circus shows.
  • Allow you to become familiar with load cells and teach you how to calculate the actual forces involved in the various circus acts you may encounter when programming shows
  • Demonstrate exactly what a Chinese pole is, and the various ways it can be rigged, using both temporary and permanent anchor points.
  • Explain the difference between a Slack wire and a Tight wire.
  • Explore the challenges of stabilising a dynamic load, from the extremes of swinging trapeze and performer-flying to static trapeze, silks and corde lisse.

By the end of the workshop, you will have gained a practical knowledge and technical understanding of what visiting companies can install in your buildings and how to ensure the safety of the public, your staff and your venue and how to bring more of this exciting art form to your audiences.

Having toured their award-winning show FLOWN worldwide, Pirates of the Carabina have a wealth of knowledge of touring circus and adapting circus to fit venues of all shapes and sizes, in- and outdoor.