Appeasing Nergal

Stay inside, get your UberEats order in...and juggle.

Appeasing Nergal is a comical exploration into the lives of circus artists during a lockdown or an enforced period at home. Set in the living room of three circus housemates, the show explores their housemate dynamic and friendship while they are trapped inside, along with depicting various activities they get up to in order to pass the time. The show gradually becomes more unhinged, with the artists slowly starting to entertain and believe wilder and crazier ideas/theories the longer they are cooped up together, culminating in them trying an ancient juggling ritual to appease Nergal, a Mesopotamian god.

Themes running throughout this work include persevering during times of adversity, creatively using time during boredom, supporting your friends, and some satirical political commentary on the inability of politicians and leaders (especially during crises). Appeasing Nergal aims to unite audiences through its light hearted portrayal of these world events, while at the same time intentionally side-stepping any issues that were divisive during this period, leaving everyone uplifted and entertained regardless of their various beliefs and values.

Form and Style

The show is an ensemble show with all three artists being involved in all of the acts. Its circus-theatre format means it alternates between dialogue and circus acts to advance the narrative of the show. The show features solo and pass juggling, acrobatics and mouthstick as the circus specialty acts interspersed with various skits and humorous theatrical scenes and dialogue to help progress the story.

Community Engagement

Acrobatch directors Ben and Simon are experienced circus trainers and both teach regularly at CircusWA. Artists are able to engage communities through the teaching of circus workshops, community Q&As, artist

mentoring or, if there is something specific required, Acrobatch is happy to start those discussions in order to try and best fulfil the needs of the community.

Previously, Acrobatch has completed a regional workshop and performance tour throughout the South West as part of the DLGSC’s Creative Communities initiative and mentored emerging artists from CircusWA to create and perform acts as part of a paid performance opportunity alongside industry professionals as part of the Acrobatch-produced cabaret, Carnie Brewed, during FRINGE WORLD Festival.


“Bunbury Fringe and Jo Arts Events has been working with Acrobatch for 2 years, and in that time have developed a true respect for the company’s craft, creativity and professionalism. Down Rebound was so well received at Bunbury Fringe 2023 and we are keen to explore Appeasing Nergal for future festivals after seeing it at Karnidale – The WA Circus Festival. Their craft in tying theatre with circus offers a unique new experience to audiences.” – Jo O’Dea, Bunbury Fringe

“Appeasing Nergal is a well thought through show that holds appeal to a wide audience range. I was belly laughing at the hilarious insights into the casts’ creative imaginations and references to modern times. A wonderful, light-hearted show that features captivating, and at times nail biting circus and balancing tricks, superbly tied together with theatrical production. It was great to have them as part of Joondalup Festival this year and I look forward to seeing what Acrobatch work on next.” – Lisa Estrano, City of Joondalup

Available Marketing Collaterals
  • Video Trailer
  • High Res. Photos
  • Media Release

Ben Kotovski-Steele: Ben is a co-director of Acrobatch and is experienced circus performer, rigger and trainer. Specialising in partner acrobatics, pass juggling and duo trapeze, Ben has produced, directed and performed in an award-winning show for Fringeworld Perth (Critical; Best WA Circus 2019), toured Ireland with Tumble Circus in their show Unsuitable, and performed in the Perth Festival commissioned show Leviathan. Ben is an associate artist for Fliptease and MAXIMA Circus and is also the Troupe Director for the CircusWA Level Up Academy. This year he was part of the YUCK Circus regional tour as their rigger and tour manager.

Simon Wood: An international performer, Simon performed on Britain’s Got Talent as a guest aerialist, at Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts, and with London-based contemporary circus company, Upswing. Since returning to Perth, Simon was also part of Leviathan, as well as performing with Steamworks in SITU-8 at the State Theatre Centre. Simon is an associate artist for Fliptease, Steamworks Arts and Upswing.

Luke Forrester: Luke is an international circus and street performer specialising in juggling and mouthstick balancing. Career highlights include Opera Australia, Glastonbury Festival, Circus Vegas, Circus Aotearoa, CircusOz, and Hudson’s Circus. He is an associate artist for Fliptease and CAJ Entertainment.



April 2024 Onwards


Circus and Physical Theatre, Theatre and Puppetry


Adults in their 20s-40s, audiences who enjoy comedy, theatre and/or circus. Not designed as a kids show but appropriate for teenagers and older children. Relatable for a wide range of audiences.


55 mins

Bump In

8 hours (includes full venue setup of props/set and hired lighting and sound equipment and 2.5 hours for tech)

Bump Out

approx 3 hours


Weekly Fee: $11300 including full lighting and audio equipment hire. If all venues have the required equipment, the weekly fee is around $8300.

Company Contacts

Contact Name: Simon Wood

Tell me more


Venue Format

Blackbox/Hall ideal, most spaces can work - the show is designed to be versatile and the premiere season was done in a big top tent.

Touring Party



Maximum performances a week: 6

Does this show require a remount? Yes

First Possible Performance: Following day from the tech – anytime.

Minimum Break Between Shows: 3 Hours

Minimum stage dimensions: 6mx6m and 6m height

Staging and Set Description:

Set is designed to look like a living room, featuring a couch and side table and another table and has a curtained backstage area directly behind or the possibility to create one with curtain rails.

Lighting requirements:

Standard lighting rig with one special to simulate a flickering TV light. Movers and strobes helpful but not a minimum req

Audio requirements:  

Access to the theatre sound system plus one microphone for pre/post show announcements.

Other technical or performance notes:

We can hire all this equipment for venues lacking the technical capacity.