Inside Cirque du Soleil: Nathan Dennis – Brisbane’s AcroNet superstar

Home » Inside Cirque du Soleil: Nathan Dennis – Brisbane’s AcroNet superstar


Nathan Dennis is the pride of Brisbane, returning home next year as the city prepares to welcome one of the biggest live entertainment acts in the world.

Opening night of Cirque du Soleil hasn’t arrived yet, but already the Brisbane season has been extended due to widespread interest in its new show, KURIOS.

A cast of 47 of the world’s most elite gymnasts, acrobats, contortionists, hand-puppeteers, yo-yo wizards, clowns, actors and musicians handpicked from 17 countries will tell the story of an invisible world where the grandest dreams await.

Nathan hails from Queensland and was inspired to train professionally as a gymnast and trampolinist after seeeing Saltimbanco at the young age of 13.  Realising a dream, he was invited to join the troup in 1997 upon which time he joined the AcroNet segment which audiences will see at KURIOS as it arrives for the first time in Brisbane after touring North America since 2014.

(Credit: @thomashubener / ©UBNR – Featuring Mathieu Hubener, Acro Arno, Jack helme, Ryan Shinji Murray, Nathan Dennis, Karl Lecuyer, Victor Degtyarev)

Above a vast ocean, underwater creatures pirouette, bounce and rebound on a net that covers the entire stage.  Their street-style performance is mixed with pure trampoline techniques.  The net is tuned so that the artists standing on the surface can use their legs to modulate the amplitude of the bouncing motion, at times creating a slingshot effect that propels their teammates toward the peak of the big top.

Nathan is now the strength and conditioning coach on tour, bringing his knowledge to help artists optimise their performance through fitness.

“Personally I like to do a lot of CrossFit and Olympic lifting.  I train four to six times per week before work” he says when sharing his regime for staying in shape to meet the demands of the high energy and technically advanced manouvres.   The show can be performed up to twice a day leaving a small gap in between performance just over an hour.  “If I’m not coaching other artists, I’m doing another small training session, usually with partner or a small group workout with the other performers.   Personally I like to keep moving otherwise it’s hard to get started for the second show. ”

Nathan says he prefers strength training and cardiovascular work stressing the importance of a routine fitness regime important in his line of work in order to execute the stunt choreography that can present dangers if not executed correctly.

“It’s important to keep fit and heathy because our body is our instrument for work, without it we wouldn’t able to perform every night” adds Nathan.  “Mainly protein, a handful of carbohydrates, fruit and vegetables” constitutes his clean eating diet and nutrition plan. “But due to my intense workout schedule and workload, I’m able to eat a lot.  If I want pancakes I have pancakes.”

KURIOS opens in Brisbane January 10 through to February 23, 2020.  Tickets start at just $80 with VIP EXPERIENCE packages include premium seating, complimentary parking, drinks on arrival, access to a sectioned off lounge, savour hors d’oeuvres before the show and sweet treats during intermission.

Author: Chris Walker
Credit: © Martin Girard
Costume: Philippe Guillotel
Cover Image: @n8tedennis