Drawing from circus, stand-up and live art, Contra is a solo-cabaret of contradictions. Fierce, witty and uncompromising, this highly physical show interrogates personal, social and historical occupations of the female body and explores, literally, where such bodies are positioned and how we are meant to look at them. Expect scenes of nudity, aerial acrobatics, and explicit references to mythical reptiles and female sexuality. Written and performed by Laura Murphy and directed by Ursula Martinez.

Age rating: 16+ (nudity, references to sex)



The Wee Review

...the boldness and honesty in her words make Contra a vital show.


…a blistering show blending standup, confessional

and circus performance… kicking against the culture of female oppression.


Contra is all the mess that is pushed down, only to spring back up, and that is precisely what makes the show so thrilling.


The List

Photos: Milan Szypura, Bernadette Fink & Mark Lycett

Written & Performed by Laura Murphy

Creative Team


Directed by Ursula Martinez

(A Family Outing, Wild Bore, La Soirée)

Creative Producer 

Nicole A’Court Stuart

Early Stage mentoring - Terry O’Connor
Choreographic support - Madeleine McGowan

Lighting design - Katie Davies

2020 Dates

31st January & 1st February: Tour Vagabond (Fribourg, Switzerland)
12th February: Cirkusmania @  Södra Teatern (Stockholm, Sweden)

14th February: Feral Festival (Copenhagen, Denmark)
19th March: Cambridge Junction (UK) CANCELLED DUE TO COVID19

1 & 2nd April: Mythos Festival (Rennes, France) POSTPONED TO 2021

17-19th April: Pfefferberg Theater (Berlin, Germany) RESCHEDULED 13-15th November 2020
24 & 25th April: T-Werk (Potsdam, Germany) POSTPONED (stay tuned for dates...)
25th May: The Lowry (Salford, UK) POSTPONED (stay tuned for dates...)
30 &31st May: Circus-Dance Festival (Cologne, Germany) POSTPONED TO 2021

1st August: Circus Bende Festival (Amsterdam, Holland) POSTPONED TO 2021

2019 Dates

7th-8th March : Cirko (Helsinki, Finland)

15th-16th March: CircusNext @ Maison Internationale La Coupole (Paris, France)

23rd March: Jacksons Lane (London, UK)

28th March: C!CAF (Copenhagen, Denmark)

12th April: La Grainerie (Toulouse, France)

9th May: Cirkobalkana (Zagreb, Croatia)

26-28th June: Fusion Festival (Larz, Germany)

31st July-11th August: Summerhall (Edinburgh Fringe, UK)

5-7th September: At.Tension Festival (Larz, Germany)

21st September: ATOLL Festival (Karlsruhe, Germany)

27th September: Cirkobalkana (Belgrade, Serbia)

29th September: UMA FAMÍLIA INGLESA 2019 @ Mala Voadora (Porto, Portugal)

18-19th October: Circus City @ Arnolfini Bristol (Bristol, UK)

9th Novermber: Cirqadia Festival (Liverpool, UK)

15th November: Le Carre Magique (Lannion, France)

19th November: Jacksons Lane (London, UK)

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Supported by: CircusNext (Laureate 2018-2019. CircusNext is a European Programme coordinated by Jeunes Talents Cirque Europe and supported by the European Union), Arts Council England, Jacksons Lane, Hangar Arts Trust and Invisible Circus, Room 100, Cirkorama, Cirko, Espace Catastrophe and La Grainerie.