Gyulnara Karaeva

Gyulnara Karaeva is a World Champion acrobat, a world-class artist and a first class individual. In just 22 years, Gyulnara has already garnered a lifetime of the accomplishments that include earning the Master of Sport, International Class title in Sports Acrobatics; becoming a decorated gold-medalist at World Championship and Europe Championship competitions; performing with the top circus companies and festivals in the world and being the youngest cast member invited to join Cirque du Soleil’s ZUMANITY – ANOTHER SIDE OF CIRQUE DU SOLEIL on the Las Vegas Strip.

Best known as the innocent young nymph featured in ZUMANITY’s ‘Water Bowl’ act, Gyulnara glides lithely through 600 gallons of water to create a spectacular montage of sensual poses. An electrifying blend of contortion, hand-balancing and acrobatics, Gyulnara’s aquatic beauty has captured the acclaim of audiences and press worldwide including Time magazine, Playboy magazine, ZINK magazine and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Patrick Sebastien (the top variety show in Paris, France)

Gyulnara joined ZUMANITY from Moscow Russia, where her athletic career began at age 7. She dedicated herself to Sports Acrobatics, practicing everyday and working above and beyond the regular practices scheduled by her coaches to hone the courage, strength, stamina, co-ordination, fexibility, and agility the sport demands. By age 13, Gyulnara’s dedication to her training paid off in momentous proportions as she became an outstanding competitor in Russia, Europe and World Championships for Sports Acrobatics, Women Pairs.

Her first big win came in 1996, when she placed 2nd in the Championship of Moscow. This win precipitated two back-to-back gold-medal victories at the Championship of Russia (the first in April 1996 and then again in August of the same year). These victories earned Gyula the prestigious title of Master of Sport, International Class, an honor bestowed on athletes who have exhibited a striving for the highest results and who perform at the level of top ten best in the world.

Her wins in the Championships of Russia also catapulted Gyulnara to the upper echelons of international acrobatic competition.  In 1996, she wrapped up the competitive season with a series of Gold Medal wins under her belt at the World and Europe Championships.  Gyulnara’s momentum continued to build in 1997. Once again, she won the two Championships of Russia and went on to compete in World Championship, where she emerged the 1st place victor in the “Balance” and “Tempo” categories for Sports Acrobatics, Women Pairs.

Soon thereafter, Gyulnara parlayed her athletic career into a career in the circus arts. She joined a Russian circus company, where she was immediately recognized for her unparalleled strength, flexibility and acrobatic precision. By virtue of these skills, Gyulnara was the perfect artist to work on a brand new apparatus, the “Waterbowl.” Working in collaboration with her coach/director, Gyulnara invented a new genre of contortion in the Water Bowl, underwater contortion. She toured Europe with her new act as a headliner in numerous festivals, galas and prestigious circus events including CirkusPrinsessan in Stockholm and Roncalli’s Apollo Variete in Germany.

In one of her most competitive festival experiences, the 2002 “Cirque du Demain” Festival in Paris, Gyulnara beat out a mélange of aerial acts, contortionists, jugglers, clowns and other circus artists to take home the highly coveted Moulin Rouge special prize. Her performance also landed Gyulnara an invitation to work with the esteemed Moulin Rouge Cabaret Theatre.

Cirque du Soleil Worlds Away

A young woman in a small Mid-Western town goes to a traveling carnival one evening, where she is urged by a silent clown to visit the carnival’s circus and see The Aerialist, the show’s star attraction. She is entranced by The Aerialist, but during his act he misses a catch and falls to the ground. She rushes to help him, but then the ground beneath them gives way and they fall through into the dreamlike world of Cirque du Soleil. Separated, they travel through the different tent worlds trying to find each other, interacting with the strange and wonderful performers and performances of Cirque du Soleil.


Executive Producer:

James Cameron



Andrew Adamson



Andrew Adamson