Sparkle Society was founded by two long time collaborators, Latonya Wigginton and Ambrose Kelso, with the aim to make performing arts company that focuses on transparency with artists, representation for queer artists and making live performance accessible to a wide audience.
“We want to make art set in a world that’s a bit loose and fun, where people can come to have a good time.”
Working both as a booking agency for circus artists and as a performance collective the company’s flagship production, “Cab Suave” began touring in January 2022. Whilst Cab Suave is a new production Ambrose and Latonya bring over ten years of friendship and performing arts industry experience to the project.
2022 – Cab Suave
Taking all we have learnt over the past ten years we prepare to launch our first main stage touring show. Developed during residencies at Gasworks Arts Park and Vulcana Circus ‘Cab Suave’ premieres at the Midsumma Festival in February 2022. Collecting rave reviews Cab Suave tours to the Adelaide Fringe Festival, Melbourne International Comedy Festival and CircFest Meanjin. We receive funding to continue touring the production regionally in 2024.
2019 – Sparkle Society
We formalise our partnership under the name ‘Sparkle Society’. As an arts business we focus on finding paid work for members of our collective. We work with a range of Melbourne and Brisbane based organisations including Moreland and Bayside councils, Level Crossing Removal Project and the Tivoli Drive in Cinema to provide entertainment for events.
Transparency with artists becomes one of our core values.
2018 – Stand Here
Working with a group of women in Melbourne we produce and direct the show ‘Stand Here’. The show is a large scale immersive piece that combines visual art, circus, dance and theatre to explore themes surrounding activism and the bystander effect. In our push to address gender inequality in the circus sphere the show is crewed by all female staff, from ushers to lighting designers to technicians.
Representation for women, gender minorities and LGBTQIA+ artists becomes one of our core values.
2016 – Little Moose
We are commissioned to make a a circus cabaret show by the Village Festival, Yeppoon. Our show ‘Little Moose’ is specifically made to fit in the newly built Yeppoon foreshore area. Along with the show we run circus workshops for local children.
Performing in Yeppoon sparks our love for regional touring and bringing art to a wide audience becomes one of our core values.
2015 – Working on a Dream
Returning from Europe we make ‘Working on a Dream’, a two person children’s show. We tour the show to the 2High Festival Brisbane and the Melbourne Fringe Festival. Through trial and error we learn a lot about independent producing in Australia. We also commence study. Latonya begins a Bachelor of Business and a Bachelor of Circus Arts and Abby a Bachelor of Science. Over the next few years we split our time between our creative practise and higher education.
2014 – Body Play
We work with a group of friends, made at Flipside, to create our first work, ‘Body Play’. This group devised piece explores the joy of movement and friendship. We take up a residency at SeaChange Arts in the UK, providing circus workshops to youth at risk in exchange for space to develop the work.
We travel to France to premiere the work at L’Odyssey Du Cirque Festival. Although proud of our work, we don’t have the skills yet to continue the life of the work past it’s premier.
2010-2013 – Flipside Circus
We meet as Flipside circus students in 2010 where we learn the foundational skills that shape our future arts practise. Working with exceptional coaches such as Chelsea McGuffin, Natano Fa’anana, Jesse Scott and Lauchlan McAulay we are inspired us to pursue performing arts as a professional career.