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Circus in Denmark

Circus News and What's On

Last updated : 17. February 2018

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Denmark is a kingdom in north-western Europe, the southernmost of the Scandinavian countries. Denmark comprises of the Jutland peninsula as well as numerous islands in the Baltic and North seas. The principal islands, lying between Jutland and Sweden, are Zealand and Funen. Near the North American mainland, between the North Atlantic and the Arctic oceans, is the island of Greenland, home of Santa Claus and an integral part of the Danish monarchy. Greenland is internally self-governing. Excluding Greenland, Denmark has an area of 42,370 sq km (16,360 sq mi). The population of Denmark is aprox. 5,500,000. The capital and largest city is Copenhagen, on the island of Zealand, with a metropolitan area population of aprox. 1,400,000. Other major cities, with their estimated populations, include Aarhus (275,000), Odense (180,000) and Aalborg (160,000).

In Denmark we have for many years had 3 large travelling circuses: Arena, Benneweis and Dannebrog. Circus Benneweis will spend season 2016 and 2017 off the road for restructuring but plan to resume its long run in 2018. Also Circus Dannebrog will spend season 2017 off the road.

Furthermore we have two medium sized circus, Circus Baldoni and Circus Trapez, and 3 dog and pony-shows (what Americans calls high grass circuses) Circus Arli, Circus Krone (not to be mistaken for the mighty German Circus Krone!) and Circus Mascot. In addition to those the actor and comedian Soren Ostergaard tours Denmark with Zirkus Nemo which is a combination of a circus and a comedy show. 

Some youth organisation produces circus-performances with kids as performers, using names as circus Tvaers, circus Flik-Flak and circus Arcus.

A number of foreign contemporary circuses are frequent visitors to Denmark, most of them in corporation with Copenhagen International Theatre (KIT). Canadian Cirque du Soleil visited Copenhagen July/August 2001 and was back in October 2009, February 2013 and March 2014. The Swedish Circus Scott visited Copenhagen in October or November in 1999, 2000 and 2001. Some German family circuses have some seasons tried their luck in Denmark without attracting much audience. Present Danish rules regarding e.g. technical documentation for tent construction and security will make it very costly for foreign tent circuses to visit Denmark. The present rules are due to a tent collapse in 2013.

Since 1991 The Copenhagen Circus Building has only occasionally been used for the purpose for which it was built in 1886. Swedish owned Walllmans Nöjen took over the Circus Building in January 2003. Since the building has undergone a modernization. The old stables now function as restaurant kitchen and banqueting rooms respectively, while the elephant hallway has been turned into the artists’ wardrobe. Wallmans use the building for dinner shows with singers, dancers and a few artists.

The picture on the top of this page shows the Circus Building in 1953, when the famous clown Charlie Rivel was the main attraction at Circus Schumann. The photos at the bottom of the page show the three largest circuses in Denmark: Circus Arena ,Circus Benneweis and Circus Dannebrog.

News from Denmark
What's on (Calendar)
Facts about circus Arena
Facts about circus Arli
Facts about circus Benneweis
Facts about circus Dannebrog
Facts about smaller Danish circuses
Facts about youth circuses in Denmark
Facts about Danish circus collections
Facts about Danish circus families
Circus fans
Danish circus year in review
Survey of performers with Danish circuses 1969 to date
Facts about this page

I will be happy to receive any comments you may have on this page, including corrections and proposal for amendments. Email me on

Edited by Ole Simonsen

Webmaster : Lars Simonsen

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Circus Arena 2008. Photo: Per Krogh Petersen

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Cirkus Benneweis 2005

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Circus Dannebrog 2007