A look inside The Dirty Circus, Ireland’s rising burlesque and cabaret club night

The Dirty Circus is bringing its brand-new club night to Dublin on April 27, and GCN caught up with the organisers to find out more.

Image of a burlesque performer at The Dirty Circus.
Image: The Dirty Circus

Since its foundation over a decade ago, The Dirty Circus has grown from strength to strength and is now preparing to put on its first club night in The Grand Social on April 27. Renowned for celebrating alternative artistic performances encompassing burlesque, pole, drag, music, comedy and more, the show is a staple in the Irish scene. GCN caught up with organiser Tommy Walsh to chat about the new venture.

“The show started 15 years ago in an underground Galway venue to provide a platform for alternative artists to express their art forms in a safe, supportive environment,” Tommy explained, adding that “Ireland was very different back in those days…”

From humble beginnings in Galway to becoming a regular feature at Ireland’s biggest music festival Electric Picnic, the show has platformed over 200 homegrown and international acts, making it “a major contributor to the burgeoning cabaret scene that we are enjoying currently,” Tommy said.



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The Dirty Circus stage has hosted global names like Ms Sam Eye Am from New York City, Ms Jolie Tease from Italy and comedian Phil Jupitis from England. As for Ireland-based acts, the full list is too plentiful to include, but among them are Kristin Kapelli, Neon Love, Daria Decollette, Bonnie Boux, The Temptress, Bella AGoGo, Miss Memphis Shell, Bella Curve, Paul Currie, Barbara Vulso and Spreadie Mercury.

“We have worked so hard over the years to create a supportive environment for all acts, and freedom of expression is at the core of this. All shapes, sizes, ethnicities, sexualities and genders are welcome with open arms and we often refer to the show as our ‘Circus Family’. We also believe that through our shows we have helped in some small way with body confidence and empowerment through our varied casts,” Tommy said.

The show in Dublin on April 27 will host a similarly diverse lineup, with MC Paddy Fabulous set to be joined by the likes of Shelby Yours, Mélisande Souef, Barbara Vulso and many more. Audiences can expect “all the colours of the rainbow from our walkabout performers,” as the Circus will pour out across the venue. And if that weren’t enough, there’ll also be electro-swing DJs keeping the party going late into the night.



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Tickets for the club night in The Grand Social are on sale now – get yours before it’s too late!

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