The company

O Último Momento is a Franco-Portuguese circus company, created in 2004 by João Paulo Santos, a Portuguese circus artist and Guillaume Dutrieux, a French musician.

They both met at Cheptel Aleïkoum, an artistic collective born from the fifteenth promotion of the Centre National des Arts du Cirque. Based in France, the company travels throughout Europe, but extends its borders to the rest of the world, from Asia to North and South America and Africa. O Último Momento offers performances mainly based on the Chinese mast discipline, João Paulo Santos’ speciality, but is also open to other artistic fields, such as dance and video.

Since his beginnings with the company O Último Momento, João Paulo Santos, a Portuguese national, has maintained a strong link with his native country. Considered a precursor in the field of contemporary circus, his experience and training, most of which was acquired in France, have allowed Portuguese structures to promote an art and discipline that was relatively unknown in this country.



João Paulo Santos

Guillaume Dutrieux-portrait-crop

Guillaume Dutrieux


2017 Compagnie JGM for the creation of Mundo Interior

2017 with Elsa Caillat, co-author and performer of Abril: direction by the students of the 31st promotion of the ENACR / CNAC course. The show Para(îê)tre was presented on 21, 22 and 23 April at the Ecole Nationale des Arts du Cirque in Rosny-sous-Bois.

  • The Ecole Nationale des Arts du Cirque de Rosny-sous-bois / ENACR invited João Paulo Santos and Elsa Caillat to direct the end-of-year show of the students of the 31st promotion of the ENACR / CNAC / Centre National des arts du Cirque de Chalons-en-Champagne course.

    In an increasingly connected society, self-image has become a priority. So is appearance more important than being? Form over substance? Permanent balance between being and appearance, feeling and pretending.

    The group is a sounding board for our image and social networks are a kind of magic mirror to which we keep asking the same question. This show tackles these paradoxes, which are as old as the world but so current at the same time, questions that are as existential as they are trivial. He also talks about the dreams and fears of the students in this apprenticeship of a passion, the circus.

    Direction João Paulo Santos et Elsa Caillat With Demian Bucci, Oskar Norin, Anton Persson, Sebastian Krefeld (bascule), Rémi Cadé (Chinese pole), Noémi Devaux (aerial hoop), Hector Diaz Mallea (Chinese pole), Lilian Dufour, Camille Guichard (air frame), Mathilde Jimenez, Maxime Steffan (main-à-main), Darianne Koszinski (flying rope), Marica Marinoni (Cyr wheel), Mael Thierry (Chinese pole), Céline Vaillier (Chinese pole) Lighting Enzo Giordana Music Tiago Cerqueira Partners Cie Tout Fou Tout fly / Festival Un Chapiteau de rencontres © photos Loïc Nys

2018 Porto International Circus Festival with João Paulo Santos as part of the artistic direction

2019 ACERT Theatre Company in Tondela for the creation of Desafios

  • Desafios combines theatre and circus and proposes a common artistic narrative where the two disciplines unfold in a dialogue with an imposing scenography.

    Desafios speaks of the confrontation between the physical and the intangible, between knowledge and discovery, between movement and immobility… and shows the challenge of analysing existence in the light of a different everyday life where the world is divided between those who take a risk and those who do not move, between those who accept to surpass themselves and those who, out of fear, continue to look at the ground, afraid and trembling.

    Desafios depicts the daily life of a community that could be ours, in a country that we could know, living in the countryside in a social and yet mundane smallness that slashes the joy of free living as it could have been dreamed of in Portugal during the April Revolution.

    ACERT and O Último Momento have had a creative relationship since 2005 when João Paulo Santos first came to ACERT’s venue in Tondela, Portugal, for the creation of his first show (Peut-être). In 2016, as part of the Cirkus Lab Project, the two companies created a show together for the first time, Não Tens Coragem?! with the participation of Na Xina Lua, the theatre group from Tondela high school. Desafios is the second joint creation of ACERT and O Último Momento, premiering at the FINTA Festival on 13 November 2019 and touring Portugal afterwards.

    © photos Rui Coimbra

Associate artist to Espaço do Tempo, Montemor-O-Novo.