Under the big top at Cambodia’s edgy Phare Circus


A CNN article highlighted Phare, The Cambodian Circus. Phare’s circus comes from Phare Ponleu Selpak Performing Arts School, the same wonderfully talented people that helped bring to life the Giant Puppet Project and Parade last week.

This group was founded in 1994 by refugees of the Khmer Rouge regime who wanted to rebuild Cambodia through the revival of arts. Today, The Cambodian Circus is a staple in Siem Reap’s lively cultural calendar. When you come to Siem Reap, do not miss out on their surprising, awe-inspiring productions, which are held every night.

If you’re a guest at Navutu Dreams, please do contact us to book your tickets for tonight’s show!

A bar owner arrives to find his bartender still drunk, sleeping on a floor littered with empty beer bottles and cans.

The band arrives, carrying a beaten-up car door.

The intoxicated bartender, struggling to consciousness, is incapable of walking a straight line, yet he takes to a tightrope strung across the bar to do tricks to impress the cute female vocalist.

This isn’t a a scene from a wild Cambodian bar.

It’s the opening act of “Khmer Metal,” a show by the Phare Cambodian Circus in Siem Reap, the departure point for exploring dazzling Khmer archaeological sites such as Angkor Wat.

After a day scrambling ruins in the sticky heat, most tourists spend their nights dining on Khmer barbecue while downing cold one-dollar beers on Pub Street.

But increasingly, visitors are opting for a taste of contemporary Cambodian culture, everyday life and entertainment under the big top at the city’s new circus.

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