Lives on Rope by Sazzad Ibne Sayed

Ezazul Kha, who is a founding member of a circus troop; after serving forty years, now had to quite this profession empty handed like an unnecessary object because of poor wages. Before changing of the ownership of that troop he used to get 5600 tk (80 USD) per month and new owner after one month of his taken control cut it to 2100 tk (30 USD) per month. All performers also do not receive any danger money or insurance for their life risking performance. For women, another reason of quitting is indecent environment. Young women are often forced to striptease and prostitution. For children there is no opportunity of education. For these and some more other reasons Bangladesh is losing a part of her culture – circus.

Statement : In my childhood I went with my family to enjoy a circus show. That was a remarkable day for me. That show time and even some few later days I was staying in dreams. Actually in present days also, several years after my first circus enjoying day, if I hear the word circus I start walking through the lane of my fantasy… the thrilling trapeze, Suspense music, and all other breath taking moves…

Now days, the younger generation of our country especially in large cities just know about the word circus, they have saw the performance in television. But can they feel the suspense there? Do they get worried when they see a person walking on a tiny rope thirty or forty feet above their head? I don’t think so. Television is not that real. Not only that, they are also missing a tradition.

When I started working on Circus my main focus was to recreate my fantasy through my image but as a documentary photographer one of my main responsibilities was to find out the reason of loosing this trail.

I this particular image I tried to merge the fantasy and reality by the charming color and gesture of the joker with striped black & white.

Sazzad Ibne Sayed born in 1981 is a documentary photographer based in Dhaka, Bangladesh. After graduating (BSC in Physics) he got interested to work in photography sector and got admitted in graduation program in photojournalism in Pathshala – South Asian Institute of photography in 2005. Sazzad started his journalistic career as staff photographer for Daily Star, a leading English daily of Bangladesh and still working there for Lifestyle department.

His photographs published in some national and international publications. He also took part in 7 group exhibition in Bangladesh, England & Norway . In 2008 he won a silver medal in China International press photo contest.

Website :
Circus - "Lives on Rope"


3 thoughts on “Lives on Rope by Sazzad Ibne Sayed

  1. blade . . . says:

    I think this work’s should focus more and need to proper record. Sazzed is a very gentle and cool documentary photographer he can find the real stories. I like his works especially this picture shown beautiful color and light and dress which are more relevant his stories. Hope to see more work in future……………………monirul

  2. adnan says:

    when i saw this photo almost a year ago in pathshala, i wondered how this was made. someone told me that the photographer used torch to light the face. i didn’t know this photographer then.

    as sazzad bhai mentioned here that he wanted to recreate the fantasy through his images, this photo fascinates me (i want to see more, i am not happy only with this one)…..he also wants to find out the reason why this kind of entertainment is getting out of our society day by day…its true, i saw the kids are busy with playstation and other computer games where no real time suspense is present. thanks to sazzad by because he drives me into a nostalgic suspense…..the suspense i got seeing circus in my childhood….the circus, the performers shown, with almost no proper safety compliance.

  3. Shah Sazzad says:

    One of the most compelling photographs I have seen – I wondered about the placement of the subject breaking the rule of thirds (meant to of course). The lines behind give me a feeling of flashes of years gone by. Astonishingly Ezazul kha brooding expression expresses the opening lines of the story to the core beside the subject’s eyes, which actually (in my opinion) balances the composition. The lights of whatever Sazzad used spontaneously brings out the just contrast of color against the moody background surmounting the joy of the circus and at the same time the threatening situation of the people working for the circus. Chobita valo lagse tai atlami korlam.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s