Reported in the News Letter on December 27, 1958: Circus goes down a storm with orphans and sick children

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The first performance this season of Dr Hunter’s Circus proved a success with an audience largely composed of children.

There was a great variety of performing animals, among which the seals appeared to be first favourites. An unusual feature was presented by Frederika, whose cats acting in harmony with two dogs provided a novelty.

For those who are happier watching human performances than those of animals there was much to enjoy. The equilibrist, Johnnie Gray, was noteworthy for the skill of his turn on a bicycle precariously balanced high on two steel pillars. The performance of the contortionist, Mickey Ung, was outstanding.

No circus is complete without its clowns and this year the children’s friends, Toni, Tina and Tony are back and in good heart.

The management of the Empire Theatre [Belfast] followed its custom of inviting 350 children from orphanages and 300 children attending hospitals to attend the dress rehearsal which took place on the afternoon of December 24. This gesture to 650 youngsters was much appreciated by the children and by all those concerned with them. The Belfast Rotary Club provided sweets and ice cream and two patrons of the Empire Theatre presented fruit and gift packages to each child.