GOODBYE ESTHER Comes to The Playground This Month

Performances run November 23-26.

By: Nov. 08, 2023

Multidisciplinary performance artist Emily Hughes enchants audiences with her multitude of artistic skills, including aerial, clown, handstands and juggling, in the premiere of her new work, “Goodbye Esther”; a visually stunning, emotionally vibrant, circus-theatre performance about what it means to let go. 

Best known for her collaborative work as co-Artistic Director of Hercinia Arts Collective, including their contemporary circus productions as part of Arts in the Parks Toronto since 2018, and their iconic Money Fish characters, Emily's solo work has also been featured as part of “Balancing on the Edge” (Harbourfront Centre Theatre, 2016), the In the Soil Arts Festival (2018 & 2019) and AP Events' productions “Bloom and Wonders of Winterland”. She has been performing and collaborating locally and internationally as a professional aerialist for the past 20 years.    

Hughes' first full length solo show “Goodbye Esther” follows her clown character ‘Esther', as she navigates the complex emotions that accompany her end of days. Presented as part of the inaugural season at The Playground, a new circus-focussed venue in the heart of Leslieville, the likes of which has not before existed in Toronto, the show makes use of The Warehouse space to create a unique, semi-immersive experience. Audiences begin by exploring an installation of Esther's mind, before embarking on a clown saga through a grey world with a winding pathway. There, they meet strange Bird Beings as memories come to life through spectacular circus acts and poetic clowning. This solo circus-theatre show explores themes of loss, memory, love and mortality, through aerial fabric, trapeze, projection, hand balancing, juggling, physical theatre, and clown.

With the contributions of emerging director Calvin Petersen (Dead Broke, DOGS), choreographic consult and dramaturgy from National Circus School graduate, Anna Vigeland, projection and lighting design by Evan DeRushie, and featuring original music by Mark Brathwaite, DeAnna Choi, Stacie Dunlop, cheryl o, and Matthew Reid, Hughes takes audiences on a playful, visceral journey to The End. 

This production was made possible with support from Canada Council for the Arts and Ontario Arts Council., a division of the Government of Ontario.

Emily Hughes and AP Events present “Goodbye Esther” created and performed by Emily Hughes.

Venue: The Playground

388 Carlaw Ave unit 207 Toronto, ON M4M 2T2

Show Dates & Times:

November 23rd, 7:30pm

November 24th, 7:30pm

November 25th, 7:30pm

November 26th, 2:00pm

Website: Click Here
Media Rep Contact: Laura Piccinin,

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