Today I did something that every kid has dreamed about. I ran away and joined the circus.
That is not entirely true, however when one is almost a part of the production, lines are blurred. I am speaking of Cirque du Soleil’s latest show to arrive in Australia, “Kurios” and I can tell you, if you get a chance to attend, you will be in for a treat!
Upon arrival we were guided into the BigTop and up the steps into the stadium seating. Lighting was dim, but that only set the mood for the mysteries that awaited. The stage itself was intricately detailed, with beautiful ornate props and colourful floorboards. Above the stage, a steampunk clock frozen at 11:11, the wishing hour.
The lights dimmed. The audience was immediately whisked into a world of imagination and wonder. Actors in ornate and glamorous outfits began to tell the tale of an alternate past, in a place where wonders abound for those who trust their imagination. A scientist is convinced that somewhere, there is a hidden world – a place where the most fantastic and craziest dreams await.
The aviator arrives and with some assistance, takes his plane up and away, flying overhead and immersing the audience in the performance. What followed was an incredible display of acrobatics and imagination, involving a three-level balancing tower made of tubes and boards, all performed on a swinging platform that propels itself out over the audience.
Just when I thought I had this show figured out, everything changes. New actors, new outfits and a new soundtrack turned the mood from something close to a 19th century jazz bar, to an early 20th century swing dance. These performers must work out for at least 20 hours a day! The women were propelled up into the air, far above the other performers, but then caught by their dance partners with such ease. Then the men had their turn at defying gravity. Three men hurled another into the air, landing on the shoulders of another. Then another. A tower of three men reached high into the void above the stage! They made it look so effortless, that I considered giving it a go. Thankfully, I did not.
I don’t want to give too much away, but know that you will struggle to sit still, as your head and neck will be constantly looking from side to side, top to bottom, unsure as to what is going to happen at any given point. So much is happening at any moment, that everyone will see it a little differently. Perhaps that is the idea? To keep the viewer wondering, dreaming and imagining?
I have never been to a Cirque du Soleil show before, but now I feel that I need to go to all of them. The energy and wonder that these skilful performers deliver is nothing short of breathtaking. Whilst I wouldn’t take small children to the show, I believe this show would be suitable for primary-aged children and above. I only say this because, I would hate to miss even a second of the show whilst taking a younger child out for the toilet or a snack. People of all ages are welcome to attend!
With 47 artists and performers consisting of world-class gymnasts, acrobats, contortionists, puppeteers, yo-yo wizards, clowns, actors and musicians, the scientist’s steampunk world is turned upside-down as they are accompanied by an energetic gypsy jazz, electro swing soundtrack like no other.
Kurios is like no other Cirque show before it. For the first time, it is not under their trademark blue and yellow Big-Top, instead opting for a grey and white variant which ensures better energy consumption and more efficient heating and cooling. There are a staggering 426 props in the entire show, more than any other Cirque production. For the first time ever, when weather permits, three of the performers scale the outside of the Big Top before the show and entertain the waiting crowd below, complete with live music!
Cirque du Soleil’s Kurios opens in Melbourne March 12th at Flemington Racecourse. Bookings can be made here.