Add The Circus Magic To A Childs Life
Helps Kids To "Dare To Dream" And Learn To Make Those Dreams A Reality
Zip Zap Circus is a social circus that was founded in Cape Town in 1992, to inspire young people and help build a new culture of peaceful coexistence in South Africa.
Working with a diverse community of children from all backgrounds, Zip Zap helps kids to ‘dare to dream’ and learn to make those dreams a reality.Zip Zap’s programmes are all free to participants, with financial and material support coming from individuals, organizations, corporations, and foundations.
In South Africa and the world, Zip Zap is recognized across Governments, Ministries of Education, Tourism, Arts & Culture and private societies, as a major contributor to the development within the iconic ‘Mother City’ and providing sustainability of the circus arts in South Africa.
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Mission, Vision & Values:
What we stand for
To take “ordinary” kids (including “youth-at-risk”) and provide them with the resources to develop skills, through the medium of Circus Arts, that will develop them as young leaders, good citizens, ambassadors for South Africa, and make them eminently employable.
To provide innovative cutting edge professional training and entertainment thereby providing opportunities for youth to fulfil their potential and contributing to the growth of a healthy nation.
To form mutually beneficial partnerships with our funders and others who wish to be associated with Zip Zap.
Zip Zap is an innovative School of Circus Arts, inspiring and empowering young people.
Zip Zap creates a platform for students (and partners) with a chance to turn dreams into reality providing an open door to a fun, safe place, with a sense of family and a clear focus to shape their confidence, skills and worth, critical to moving on as a new South Africa.
That is what we call “Circus Magic”.
Our values give us the ability to live what we have learned and believe in what we do.
Ethical – we ask of ourselves and others that we walk our talk, practice transparency, safeguard our reputation, provide safe, child-friendly spaces, and to always keep in mind that how we do what we do, matters.
Transformational – engaging with us is guaranteed to totally and irrevocably change your life whether as a learner, a patron, a supplier or a friend.
Team – investing in building the team to carry the legacy 50 years from now is what we do: Encouraging trust, commitment, a sense of belonging, and eliminating any form of discrimination.
Passion and Perseverance – what we do is never just a job….and it shows.
Accountable and Sustainable – it is our opinion and expectation of others that it’s not enough to just do your job – it’s about accepting responsibility for the best result possible and being part of the solution not the problem should things go wrong.
History & Background:
The Wire We Have Walked So Far
Zip Zap was founded in Cape Town in 1992, to inspire young people and help build a new culture of peaceful coexistence in South Africa. Working with a diverse community of children from all backgrounds, Zip Zap helps kids to ‘dare to dream’ and learn to make those dreams a reality. Zip Zap’s programs are all free to participants, with financial and material support coming from individuals, organisations, corporations and foundations. In South Africa and the world, Zip Zap is recognised across Governments, Ministries of Education, Tourism, Arts & Culture and private societies, as a major contributor to the development within the iconic ‘Mother City’ and providing sustainability of the circus arts in South Africa.
Zip Zap is dedicated to supporting and conducting training in circus arts and performance as a powerful tool for social transformation, youth empowerment, team building and community upliftment. The programs provide opportunities for young South Africans from very different backgrounds to play, learn and live together using the medium of circus training and performance to model and demonstrate the possibility of true coexistence.
Zip Zap operates predominantly within the Western Cape. However, as the annual calendar of events varies from year to year, Zip Zap periodically tours internationally and nationally presenting performances and/or skills transmission programs.
The Zip Zap children have performed for presidents and world leaders. They have done more than 30 international tours and numerous international media showcases. Kids, who began as six-year-olds swinging from a trapeze tied to a tree, are now professional performing artists working in Europe and North America. Young people who grew up on the streets are now skilled and valued artists and technicians in the entertainment and film industries. Best of all, these kids have become teachers themselves. They are ambassadors and role models for others, demonstrating dramatically to young people and the wider public the possibility of a new way of treating each other.
The beginning of Zip Zap
Zip Zap opens their doors to the world
Zip Zap’s first tour
First tour to Grahamstown, South African National Arts Festival
Zip Zap’s second tour
Show for president Mandela 77th birthday
SABC television reports
Second tour to Grahamstown
First international tour
First international tour to Denmark for the Images of Africa festival
Second international tour
Second international tour to Switzerland and France
Moving to 1’200m² warehouse + performed 150 shows all over the country
Performed 150 shows all over the country
Tour to USA
Third international tour to Houston, USA to represent South Africa at Sub Saharan Arts Festival
First professional troupe
First professional troupe leaves Zip Zap to perform in France, Belgium, Monte-Carlo, Germany and Sweden
International Circus Festival
Zip Zap invited to perform at the prestigious International Circus Festival in Monte-Carlo and in Italy at the Festival of the city of Latina
Zip Zap on Spanish TV show
Zip Zap goes to Spain biggest TV show “children talent” Veo Veo and takes 5th place
Bridge Building of the Year finalist
Proudly South African – “Bridge Building of the Year” finalist
Sappi winner & Commonwealth games performance
Sappi “Ideas That Matter” winner
Performed at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne
Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain & Nikouline clown awards
Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain, Paris, France
Nikouline Russian clown awarded to Joka boys
Zip Zap dome
Set-up of dome in Founders Garden and roof wetting show “Once Upon A Circus”
Roof wetting show “Once Upon A Circus”
Brent van Rensburg wins the Men’s Health trophy
Brent van Rensburg, winner of the Men’s Health trophy for Public Service + Zip Zap performs for Red Bull in Austria
The Art of Rock – Collaboration with The Parlotones
Zip Zap creates “Art of Rock” with the Parlotones
Paul du Toit painted live in the dome
Zip Zap UK
Creation of Zip Zap UK, registered charity
Brent van Rensburg Mayor’s Medal for Youth Affairs
The Art of Rock 2
Zip Zap produced Art of Rock 2 with Freshlyground and Paul du Toit in the dome for 5000 people
Laurence Estève Knight of the National Order of Merit from French government
Opened of the Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain in Paris, France
Winner at the Pan-African Awards
Pan-African Awards winner for Entrepreneurship in Education (10’000 USD)
Training programme relaunch
Relaunch of Zip Zap full time vocational training programme Dare to Dream
Performed in Namibia
Performed for 17 NGOs
Performed schools and charities
Performs in Africa
Zip Zap performs in Namibia and Nigeria
Zip Zap runs 9 different programmes reaching 1’400 youth
White House performance
Zip Zap performs at the White House Washington DC, USA for Halloween
Performed in Spain for the AIDS Foundation
Created SIDEWAYS show, performed with band AL BAIRRE
Performed with band AL BAIRRE
Zip Zap turns 25
Brent and Laurence receive the Paul Harris fellowship from The Rotary
Zip Zap turns 25
Performs in Zurich for Roger Federer foundation
Performs in Reunion Island for the Leu Tempo Festival,
Received a Laureus award
Performed with The Parlotones at 25LIVE
Performs with the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra – JOURNEY
Opens the Zip Zap ACADEMY in Salt River