But now, Germany’s Circus Roncalli has devised a way to keep the circus alive along with the animal magic it invokes. They have phased out the use of live animals almost entirely, instead using a dazzling of array of three-dimensional holographic projections for its one-of-a-kind show.
From wild horses that gallop within the circus ring to gigantic floating fishes and elephants standing on their two front feet, the show has amazed audiences with holograms that measure about 105 ft. (32 meters) wide to 16 ft. (five meters) tall—large enough to fill the circus tent.
The move has been greeted as a brilliant alternative to the controversial use of wild animals in traditional circus acts, not only because it employs the modern wonders of computer-generated imagery in a spectacular manner, but because no actual living beings are at risk of facing inhumane treatment in the run-up to the show.
Circus Roncalli had already done away with wild animals in the mid-1990s, but kept its horses and ponies until last year. Now, the show is entirely free of live animals—a choice that was made as much due to logistics as it was over concerns for the animals’ wellbeing.