About - Upswing

Upswing is one of the UK’s leading contemporary circus companies.

We make performances and participatory experiences that connect people in unexpected ways.

We believe that, in our fragmented society, circus reveals our human potential to achieve the extraordinary together.

Upswing was founded in 2006 by Vicki Amedume to bring a new perspective to contemporary circus. Twelve years on, Vicki, now a Clore Fellow, continues to be the only female, black artistic director in the sector and to be at the forefront of its development. Upswing meets a pressing need to bring new artists and experiences to the stage that reflect a dynamic, modern Britain.


For me, as a black artist and maker, one of the most pressing problems we have is to see beyond the surface. Circus creates a democratic space to explore what binds not divides us.Vicki Amedume


Contemporary circus is an art form like no other – fearless, precarious, uncompromising and affecting. With its unique combination of risk-taking, trust and collaboration, circus embodies our extraordinary individual and collective potential.

By harnessing circus’ emotional breadth, broad appeal and physical possibilities and by fusing aerial, bungee, parkour, theatre, dance, text and multimedia, Upswing creates fresh, exhilarating performances with narrative punch.

We are a registered charity based in London and receive core funding from the Arts Council England.

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