After a long search, Flip ‘n Fly co-founders Bayaraa Odonchimeg and Baya Khaltar have finally found a building tall enough to hang their silks, ropes and trapeze.
Their new Circus School headquarters are in Foundry Road, Silverdale.
Bayaraa says the inside of the Silverdale premises is roughly 10-metres high making it ideal for circus training.
Bayaraa and Baya have a long circus history together. They joined the Music, Dance and Circus College of Mongolia when they were nine year olds.
“In the first three years, we learned various skills including gymnastics, juggling and tightrope,” Bayaraa says.
“Then the teachers put us into groups of eight, based on what acts we were good at and that’s where I met my wife.”
Bayaraa and Baya have been married for 20 years, touring the world together with their flying trapeze act.
“Even though we travelled a lot, we always got to be together,” Baya says.
But after 20 years of teaching and performing internationally, the couple decided to settle down as their son, now 15, and daughter, 13, were progressing through school. They decided to stay in New Zealand, founding the Eden Terrace branch of Flip ‘n Fly in 2015.
“In the beginning it was hard because people didn’t really know what we were about,” Baya says.
“When we tell people what we do, they always respond, ‘oh, so you’re like a clown?’” Baya laughs. “We really want to spread circus culture here.”
Four years later, Bayaraa and Baya have 520 students ranging from young children to 63-year olds, two branches, seven staff, and another son who is 18 months old.
“Our youngest loves to play with the juggling equipment, and our oldest enjoys circus training for strength,” Baya says.
However, it is their daughter, Anungoo Bayarsaikhan, who is following in her parents footsteps, achieving gold at the Australian Circus festival in her age group two years ago.
Anungoo, along with 39 other Flip ‘n Fly students, qualified for this year’s competition in Brisbane.
Bayaraa and Baya say there is a lot more to circus training than competing.
“You learn trust and mental strength, and the absolute joy of performing.”