Circus Debere Berhan


There aren’t newsboys or posters announcing their arrival, just a road along which several characters, including a wading bird, come into the field. And so the Circus Debere Berhan begins its world tour, a series of shots in which the various troupes in the Ethiopian circus company perform their numbers, blending with the landscape and underscored by an enchanting musical accompaniment. This short film plays with the immediate and fixed nature of the shots, like a modern silent cinema.

Bio-filmography of the director

Lukas Berger holds a bachelor in Photojournalism & documentary photography from the University of Applied Sciences in Hanover and a M.A in Documentary Film Directing from DocNomads. His first film "Circus Debere Berhan" (2015) premiered at 20th Milano Film Festival and was screened at more than 30 film festivals. His second film "Circus Movements" (2019) premiered at the 57th Ann Arbor Film Festival and was selected for the 68th Melbourne, 16th Vienna Shorts, 23rd PÖFF Shorts and more than 100 film festivals. He filmed “Wuqiao Circus” during the last Chinese New Year before the pandemic, it premiered at 17th Vienna Shorts and was selected for the 45th Hong Kong International Film Festival and many other festivals, winning 6 awards.

Director's note

During the past few years, I’ve been working on a series of photographs about circus shows from around the world. When I encountered the “Debere Berhan” troupe, I realized their performance shows unusual complexity and beauty. I decided to make “Circus Debere Berhan”, a film that unveils their acrobatic acts within the wildness of Ethiopian nature.


Artists: Beza; Abonesh; Ashenaf; Dawit; Habtamnesh; Hiwot; Jermal; Nebiyat; Yisak; Yosef; Zekarias


Director: Lukas Berger With collaboration: Mário Gajo de Carvalho; Teklu Ashagir Producers: Mário Gajo de Carvalho; Lukas Berger Cinematography: Lukas Berger Sound:: Abush Baryew Editors: Lukas Berger; Mário Gajo de Carvalho; Pedro Florêncio Sound design: Mário Gajo de Carvalho; Pedro Florêncio.


11 minutos   /   Imagem: 16x9  /  Som: Stereo   /  Formato: HD   /  Documentário