Preparatory Training

Having obtained full recognition by the DGCA (Directorate-General for Artistic Creation) as a preparatory circus schoolwith the goal of its students attending university level circus school and artistic programs.

Total number of students since 1997: 206


Applicant Profile:

Applicants must be aged between 16 and 22. Those from France must hold a “BEPC” or “BAC” school leaving certificate, depending on the schools to which they wish to apply.

Preparatory Training is open to foreign applicants who are advised to contact their local French embassy regarding residence permits (European applicants) or long-stay visas.

Aim of the Preparatory Training

To prepare students for entrance examinations at higher education establishments/artistic training at national and international circus arts schools.

Programme Duration, Timetable and Cost

  • 2,200 hours of preparatory training over two years from September to end-June/early July
  • 1,100 hours/year, of which 960 hours at the Centre and 140 hours/year in internship
  • 32 hours/week on average

The programme is funded by the Auvergne Rhône-Alpes regional authorities.

Applicants are responsible for the annual €500 registration fee for Arc en Cirque in addition to their living expenses (accommodation, meals, healthcare, etc).

Successful applicants from France or other European countries will have non-remunerated “vocational trainee” status.

Assessment Procedure

There are several assessment phases throughout the training year: self-assessment, ongoing and end-of-yeat technical and artistic assessments, written assignments and internship reviews (assessment by internship tutor, internship reports, etc.). Students are assessed on the presentation of their work and on their artistic projects performed on stage in front of an audience of circus and performance professionals.

Teaching Resources: People, Equipment, Financial, Cultural

A team

A permanent, qualified administrative, technical and teaching team

Qualified performance facilitators


In-house venues: three training rooms, weight room, dance studio, multimedia meeting rooms, resource library, common room with kitchen/fridge, costume room, workshop

External venues: hangar, tents, La Palestre acrobatic sports complex

Technical and teaching equipment: aerial apparatus, juggling and balance equipment, acrobatic equipment, tooling, multimedia, sound and light booth, safety equipment and materials, make-up and costumes, educational resources, etc.

Financial partners

La Ville de Chambéry

Le Conseil Régional de Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes service formation

Le Conseil Régional de Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Rhône-Alpes service Culture

Le Ministère de la Culture DRAC de Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes

Le Département de Savoie

Le Fonds Social Européen

Cultural partners

Malraux Scène nationale Chambéry, l’APEJS école des musiques actuelles de savoie, Conservatoire de Chambéry, MJC Chambéry, Confluence la Motte Servolex, Espace Jean Blanc La Ravoire, La Cascade Pôle cirque…

Application Procedure

Two selection stages

  1. An initial shortlist based on the application form.
  2. A one-day technical and artistic audition at the Centre Régional des Arts du Cirque,
  • Assessment of general physical conditioning skills (e.g. strength, flexibility)
  • Assessment of acrobatic skills (e.g. floor work, equilibristic, trampoline)
  • Assessment of artistic skills (dance)
  • Assessment of circus and artistic skills during a performance lasting no more than three minutes

Accessibility for people with disabilities

The programme is open to people with disabilities according to the profile and technical requirements described in the training selection criteria. For more information in this regard, please contact our disability officer at: