Oliveira & Bachtler create work rooted in human nature, generating a unique and multi-faceted physical language supported by circus, theatre and movement. With great regard for ambience, they compose to evoke visceral and scenic 

paintings into the space.

Christian Britten, Visual Influence

Company Oliveira & Bachtler was founded by Sage Bachtler Cushman and Hugo Oliveira in 2014. The duo met when hired for the creation of NoFit State’s multi-award winning show, Bianco, in 2012. They completed several Bianco tours together before dedicating themselves to Oliveira & Bachtler. On tour Sage and Hugo became acquainted with each other’s ethos, performance and education. Off tour they began having coffees punctuated with sardonic humour and copious amounts of laughter. Surprised, they found their guffawing was followed by a quiet tenacity and life’s most delicate disclosures. Understanding each others artistry and drive was the just beginning of their creative alliance.


Supported and funded by the Wales Millennium Centre’s creative development program, Incubator, Sage and Hugo composed their first collaboration Portus in 2014. This initial stage of development was presented at the Wales Millennium Centre’s Weston Studio. Chapter’s creative producer of dance programme Coreo Cymru, in association with Chapter and NoFit State Circus, subsequently selected the company to create work in two stages of development. The first stage presented their second collaboration Desert Trees to an international panel at the 2015 Wales Dance Platform. Upon presentation, Company Oliveira & Bachtler were offered continued support and funding through Coreo Cymru and Arts Council of Wales to develop a full- length production entitled OTUS. Oliveira & Bachtler also received support from the Black-E, CASE Cultural do Porto and Cia UmporUm, as well as funding from the Arts Council of England. In 2016 they presented  the company's first tour of OTUS at the Dance House Wales Millennium Centre, Festival De Novo Circo, The Riverfront, The Black-E and Theatre Brycheiniog with support from Coreo Cymru, Chapter and the Arts Council of Wales’ Lottery Scheme. In 2017 Company Oliveira & Bachtler received invitation from the Instituto Nacional De Artes Do Circo (INAC) to create and direct DEMUDAR, a show commissioned by the Internacional Festival Vaudeville Rendez-Vous for presentation in the festival. In 2018, Festival Vaudeville Rendez-Vous commissioned Oliveira & Bachtler directly, co-producing Kadok which was then presented in Braga, Guimarães and Famalicão for the festival. In the same year Oliveira & Bachtler was asked to collaborate with Grandpa's Lab, a video mapping company, to create and perform Lenda Da Moura which was presented in front of 10,000 people in Chaves. OTUS was presented in Famalicão and São João da Madeira in 2018 and in Teatro Viriato, Teatro Municipal de Bragança, Teatro Municipal de Vila Real and Centro de Artes de Ovar in 2019.

Hugo Maciel Da Silva Oliveira


Hugo is an 2007 Alumni of the London International School of Performing Arts where he studied under pedagogical director Tomas Prattki, receiving a distinction for his final project. Hugo also studied and trained extensively at CircoMedia and Circus Space, where he became a ACDC member. His extracurricular studies include classes and workshops with: the International School of Corpreal Mime, Andre Braga (Circolando), Sainbayara (Circus Space), Hugo Paulo (FGP), Regina Goeger (Butoh), master classes with Amit Lahav (Gecko Theatre Company), movement and Clown with Norman Taylor (Ecole Jacques Lecoq), Alex Navarro  (Cirque du Soleil), Firenze Guidi (Nofit State Circus), Debra Batton (Legs on the Wall) and Rob Tannion (DV8) among others.



Hired for the creation of NoFit State’s multi-award winning show Bianco, Hugo devised and performed a solo juggling act regarded as exquisitely understated, astounding and poetic. He performed both his solo and ensemble for three seasons, touring extensively through Europe and Australia with the production. With Bianco Hugo performed in many prestigious seasons including The London Roundhouse, Wales Millennium Centre, Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2013 & 2014, Les Tombs De La Nuit, Biennale Internationale des Arts Due Cirque and Perth International Arts Festival. Hugo has worked with companies such as New London Consort, Radar 360, Citrus Arts, Leo&Yam, Glyndebourne Opera and Metro Al Medina among others. Working with such companies has taken Portuguese native Hugo Oliveira around the world, he has performed in Scotland, England, Ireland, Wales, France, Portugal, Spain, Netherlands, India, Brazil, Mexico, Emirates Arabs United, Lebanon, Egypt and Australia.

Performance Reviews:


'an exquisitely understated juggling act so fluid that the balls seem like an extension of the juggler’s limbs, possibly even a manifestation of his thoughts.'

Lyn Gardner, The Guardian


'Extraordinary performance.'

Chris Martin, Cold Play


'The mesmeric juggling of  Hugo Oliveira whose poise and control is astonishing.'

The British Theatre Guide


'Among the highlights are Hugo Oliveira’s intimate and witty juggling act, one of the best I’ve seen.'

ABC Arts, Australian Contemporary Art and Culture Review


Also known for directing, Hugo has worked in the UK and Portugal with Historia e Contos da Minha Vila (community project for Festival Cata Vento), (co-)directing Christian Lee in his show POP and a show for the Black-E (commissioned through NoFit State Circus and the Black-E). Hugo was hired by the Instituto Nacional de Artes to direct DEMUDAR, a full length production with their first year students which  premiered in the Festival International Vaudeville Rendez Vous. Ha also directed Kadok for Oliveira & Bachtler which presented in Vaudeville Rendez Vous.


Hugo and Sage have co-created and co-directed several works together as Company Oliveira & Bachtler as well as backing each other in solo endeavours. Hugo has created several solo shows for street and theatre as well as directing for several schools and companies as well.


Hugo taught for the Instituto Nacional de Artes professional training program (PT) after assisting them with opening their new location.  He took on the role of head coach for NoFit State Circus’ Youth Troop (UK) for several years (between Bianco tours). He has given workshops in Creating Circus at the School of Acrobatics and New Circus Arts (USA), Versatile Arts (USA) and NoFit State Circus (UK) for Creating Circus and Theatre. Hugo was selected to teach at Belfast’s Serious Circus after giving a Master Class in Composing Juggling at NoFit State’s Circus Works Conference. The National Centre of Circus Arts (UK) brought Hugo in to teach private performance and juggling lessons to a student specialising in Magic in the Circus Arts Foundation Degree. Hugo is currently curating his own Juggling Lab, a training program with pedagogy based in drawing, movement, design, architecture, dance and many other inspirations. 

"Occasionally baffling, often beautiful and arresting throughout, OTUS certainly deserves to be widely seen." 
British Theatre Guide

"Otus is a ‘sense-stirringly wonderful’ show that proves the value of harnessing specialist expertise in cross-disciplinary experiments. Neither, as-we-know-it, dance nor circus, the resultant compound is a distinct success."
Circus Diaries

"Bravo to the braveness of OTUS  and the imagination of all involved "
Art Scene In Wales

Sage Bachtler Cushman


A 2010 alumna of the National Institute of Circus Arts (AU), Sage specialised in Dance Trapeze under trainer Helene Embling, with a secondary discipline combining balancing, supple acrobatics and movement (Leilisha Marning, Xing Xing). Through NICA’s Bachelors of Circus pedagogy she also studied circus basics, performance (Megan Jones, John Bolton), dance (Meredith Kitchen), partner acrobatics, knock about and general aerial. Sage was awarded a scholarship for the final year of her studies at NICA for her dedication and work ethic. Her extracurricular studies include classes at the International School of Corporeal Mime (UK), Chunky Move (AU), Velocity Dance (USA), Wild Light Yoga Center (USA), and Urban Element (CA) among others. Sage has participated in workshops and masterclasses with Thomas Prattki, Norman Taylor, Firenza Guidi, Rasposo and CIRCA as well as private lessons with Irina Naumenko (Cirque Du Soleil). Sage is also qualified and certified as a Tattooist, Community Mediator and Juvenile Justice Mediator. She has been a member of UK Equity, ACDC and En Piste.



Hired for the creation of NoFit State’s multi-award winning show Bianco, Sage worked closely with director Firenza Guidi to create and perform the finale of the show. She toured with the production extensively through Europe and Australia for three season as an ensemble acrobat and the closing number including such prestigious seasons as The London Roundhouse, Wales Millennium Centre, Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2013 & 2014, Les Tombées de la Nuit, Biennale Internationale des Arts Due Cirque and Perth International Arts Festival among many more.

Sage collaborated with Tick Tock Aerial Dance, devising solo acts as well as co-choreographing and performing ensemble work in their production Domestic Variations. She was featured in several seasons of Domestic Variations including Ally Up and The New Orleans Fringe Festival. Sage has also performed for companies such as The Aerialistas, Teatro ZinZanni's Mezzo Lunatico, Citrus Arts, Chivaree Circus and Carousel Circus among others. Through creation, development and performance Sage has worked in France, England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, Netherlands, Italy, Portugal, Egypt, Australia, Turks and Caicos, Canada and the United States of America.

Performance Reviews:


'The finale, based on simple beauty rather than extravagance, shows the restraint of great art'

Zoe Barron, Arts Hub

'Sage Bachtler Cushman's dance-trapeze finale has.. impact, combining first-rate skills with a joyful, unashamed pleasure..'

Lynn Gardner, The Guardian


'Sage stands out for polished performance on the dance trapeze.'

Jordan Beth Vincent, The Age

'..the incomparable Sage Cushman'

Rosemary Kaye, The Edinburgh Reporter


Sage and Hugo have co-created and co-directed several works together as Company Oliveira & Bachtler as well as backing each other in solo endeavours. 


Sage has taught workshops, classes and private lessons on three of the continents around the world. NoFit State Circus, The School of Acrobatics and New Circus Arts, Versatile Arts, A-WOL Dance Collective, Circus Project and The Black-E, have hosted Sage's workshops. She has given workshops in Dance Trapeze, Aerial Creativity and Act Devising, Active Flexibility and Balancing. Some of these classes sold so well that there were requests for additional workshops to cover those on the waiting list. Sage has also taught workshops meeting varying degrees of skill levels in aerial, active flexibility, balancing and general circus (handstands, flexibility, strength and conditioning, tumbling, aerial, partner acrobatics).

Sage taught ongoing curriculum at The National Institute of Circus Arts Community Program (two years), at The School of Acrobatics and New Circus Arts (one year), NoFit State Circus Community Program (three years, between Bianco tours) and assisted at Do Jumps’s Eco Theater. For these Institutions, she has taken classes from term to term as well as bringing high level groups through several years of training. With ongoing classes, Sage works to meet students in their own capability and bring them forward both through individual aims and in group dynamics.

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