Up in the tree, who could it be?
O’Reilly’s circus performance brings out the fear factor
JUST the thought of standing on a 20 foot tall platform is enough to make most people scared, but not for North Burnett circus performer Tyrone O’Reilly.
After coming up with the idea of doing a handstand on top of a windmill six months ago, his trick finally came to life.
The circus performer also managed to fit in some juggling and rollerblading.
Youngster Jordan Kielly gave the windmill climb a go as well, but left the tricks to Mr O’Reilly.
SITTING 20 feet high on top of a windmill, Tyrone O’Reilly’s feet flew in the air as he did his signature handstand on a chair.
The Monto circus performer has added a new stunt series to his trick portfolio, and it comes with an aerodynamic element.
The idea of doing tricks on top of the windmill outside Monto Landcare Building arose about six months ago.
“The problem was, we didn’t know how to do it safely until recently when we built a stand-alone platform for another trick,” he said.
“In that other trick, I slide down a zip line and breathe fire.
“Because the platform was nice and steady, it gave us the opportunity to try the handstand stunt.”
But even for the seasoned professional, the height was a fear factor.
“The first time I went up on the platform, I nearly threw up,” O’Reilly said.
“It took me about five minutes to get my head around the height and start juggling, after that it was fine. It’s all about confidence.”
Though O’Reilly can’t take the windmill itself to his performances, this new height idea has opened up opportunities. “If we have a platform or a secure structure, and somewhere where we can tie off for safety, then I can do these tricks pretty much anywhere,” he said.
“I’m trying to figure out how to put them in a proper show.”
While doing tricks at heights have their risks, O’Reilly said everything was well planned.
“For the 10 minutes of tricks, there was three of four days of work, checking everything and having a plan if something does fail when you’re up there,” he said.
It was this preparation which allowed others to climb the windmill and experience the heights for themselves on Sunday, including Jordan Kielly.
“It was very high, if felt like 13m high,” he said.
“I was like hallucinating and feeling so weird.”
Jordan squeezed in a little dance on top of the platform, but said he would leave the acrobatics to O’Reilly.
“What Tyrone did is going to give me nightmares for a few weeks,” Jordan said. Alex Kielly also experienced the adrenalin, and one particular quote came to mind when looking back at the experience.
“You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only option you have,” she said.
“When I was climbing up, it didn’t feel as scary but it’s when I was coming down that it was the scariest.”
HIGH POINT: Jordan Kielly and Tyrone O’Reilly started their Sunday with an adrenaline rush.
STUNT SUNDAY: Monto circus performer Tyrone O’Reilly performs a handstand 6m off the ground.
Rollerblading at the height proved to be most challenging, with O’Reilly having difficulty finding a balance point.
Confidence up, Tyrone O’Reilly did some juggling tricks up on the windmill.