Hear what the critics say:
“...the past week I've been listening exclusively to the Girl Circus CDs. ...the compositions, the performances, the production...all of it is terrific!”
“(They) created a unique sound--not an easy thing to do these days--with women's chorus/trumpet ensemble combination. The overall effect, to my ears, is somewhere between an eclectic pop group and a John Adams opera (in "Dream" or "BeckaPesh," for example). On the pop side, all the styles that I associate with Dave's playing and writing show up, sometimes alone, sometimes together: ska, salsa, soul, Bulgarian, circus marches ala Nino Rota, and even hints of Renaissance canzones. The ensemble playing and singing is great: The chorus blends beautifully. The music is evocative, fun, engaging.”
HOMEGROWN SOUNDS by Brett Campbell
Girl Circus, BabyBlue and Shangrila
These days, Darcy Du Ruz may be more famous for her slime than her music, but the former slug queen is also an accomplished circus/vaudeville/music performer who’s played venues from the Paris Opera to the Salzburg Mozarteum. She and Eugene Symphony/Emerald City Jazz Kings trumpeter/guitarist/composer Dave Bender put together this inventive, utterly delightful Girl Circus project for Country Fair.
Employing more than a dozen musicians (violin, saxes, trumpets, cellos, guitar, percussion, and more) plus childrens’choir, the music accompanies fire dancers, rope twirlers, whip crackers, jugglers, clowns, magicians and other acts. After hearing both discs, I’m sorry I missed those live performances, but it does allow me to judge whether the CDs work without having seen the show. They do, and splendidly. The remarkable variety of music (vocal, instrumental, rock, Latin beats, funk, tango, Italian, even some Philip Glass-style choral touches, cabaret) and humor make this circus well worth hearing as well as seeing.
Eugene Weekly 12/22/05
The music from Shangrila was composed for the Girl Circus, an all women circus featuring fire dancers, trapeze, tissue, bungie and other aerial artists, gymnasts, jugglers, comedians, and singers. Shangrila features 14 songs from four Girl Circus shows, and is one half of a dual release. The other CD is Baby Blue, which features16 songs from Girl Circus.
The instrumentation for both CDs ranges from the smallest group of bass, drums, guitar, cello, and flugelhorn to the largest group which includes the aforementioned plus an additional alto sax, tenor sax, violin, three trumpets, and a women's choir of 16 voices. The orchestra is a mix of women and men
The show titles are Darcy's Baby Blue Dream Toilet, The Corset, el Mistico Numero Cinco, and Girl Circus goes to Italy.
Baby Blue Dream featured this set list: Flush, Deep Well, White, Motations, In the Woods, Hyphenated Alligator, Language of Love, Jewels, Dream, and ExitSka.
The Corset set list was: Fly by Night, Howdy Roundup, BekaPesh, It's Nice Out, Motivated Sellers, and Clubbing.
El Mistico Numero Cinco had these songs: Girl Circus, Mystery of Love, Shangrila, Garden of Forbidden Fruit, Michael, Rechauffe, and Love Just Takes a Minute.
Girl Circus Goes to Italy: Tango Italian, Atomic #14, Farfallina, Ciao Ragazza, Vamp #16, Juggling Italians, and Rome is Burning.
Darcy Du Ruz is the creator, director, writer, lyricist, and singer of Girl Circus. Dave Bender is the composer, conductor, and trumpeter.