VISUALLY stunning, occasionally less than comprehensible, but at moments absolutely breathtaking, Circa, which visited Wales Millennium Centre recently with Wunderkammer, showcases the physical possibilities of the human form in a unique performance.

A wunderkammer is ‘a place where a collection of curiosities and rarities is exhibited’ and it’s a well-chosen title, though the curiosities can be more than a little curious. Rare indeed, however, is the skill of the performers.

Lovers of circus will be familiar with many of the ‘turns’ incorporated into a show with a sometimes obtuse narrative strand - from the opening hula hoops to trapeze artistry and a contortionist manipulating her body through a tiny hoop - but here they come with a twist. A seductive striptease on the trapeze, and an eloquently dismissive retort expressed through an impressively executed removal of the weight of hoops.

But it is in their acrobatic skills that Circa excel and the purely physical sections of the show are the most successful- elegantly leaping from floor to shoulders, balancing on a partner’s head, often confounding expectations with the woman of the pairing being the base, and at one point three women stand poised on the shoulders of a single man. Human bodies become skipping ropes, and a pair of performers roll across the stage, their close coupling turning them into a wheel. Speed, strength and seduction are all here, but so too are the odd moments when it feels as if a party piece has been shoe-horned in for effect - a song featuring the names of all the countries (almost) of the world, feels at odds with the physicality of the rest.

The final scene of Wunderkammer lingers long after the lights have come up and Bob Dylan’s Don’t Think Twice will never sound the same again as a slow langorous removal of all the burlesque trappings to the equally langorous version of an iconic song by Susanna and the Magical Orchestra reminds us of the vulnerability and humanity of the seven extraordinarily talented performers.