Thursday, July 7, 2011

Running Away with the Circus...

That was always my older sister's childhood dream. Right after my dad sat us all down to watch the first Canadian Public broadcast of Cirque Du Soliel (which means Circus of the Sun in French btw) back in 1994.
We sat in the living room, cross-legged on the floor eating snacks (that is, when our mouths weren't just suspended open), amazed at the people twisting, springing and flying across our small television screen.

I remember B. started stretching out that very night before other sister and I jumped on the trend too, but only my older sister could master the splits or even attempt to bend her small frame backwards like the girls int that circus could do. Contorted like strange pretzels on suspended hula hoops, spinning and flying through the air to French Opera music... how could we not want a piece of that?
We were completely entranced.

In the years that have followed I've kept up here and there with the different shows Cirque has put together, and been proud of something that started as a little band of French Canadian Acrobats has turned into such a phenomenon, the world over. I've watched different performances on television and always been drawn in by the incredible, difficulty and artistry of the performers, it's truly like no other circus I've ever seen.

All of this back story however, makes it strange that I wasn't jumping off the walls myself as the days counted down to seeing the Cirque Du Soliel perform their "Dralion" show last night.

Kevin and I were given tickets to see the show along with my sister and her husband and it wasn't until the lights actually went down and then up, and the music started and dancers in exotic costumes started appearing out of the ceiling and floor that all of a sudden I went "Oh, my gosh!! I can't believe I'm actually here watching this!"

And for the next two hours I was suspended like those acrobats, completely drawn in as I was when just a little girl. The perfection of the tricks, the difficulty; it's enough to make you shake your head in disbelief. And of course the artistry, the music, and dance and strange beauty of it was really too incredible to accurately describe.

The show was themed around lands of the East, from what I could tell; Central Africa, India, China and ( I hazard to guess) Persia? But there was still the strange French flair thrown in that had us scratching our heads in a good way and looking at each other to shrug our shoulders when one of the clown troop was whisked into some sort of afterlife by the tune of a bandsaw and returned wearing a pink leotard singing with lady dressed in gold....You just say, "okay, that's cirque" and get on with enjoying it.

Of course we weren't allowed to take any pictures, so I am relying on the much better photographs from various sources of the web. Most of them from here. So here is just a few highlights of the show,

My favorite act of the night was this young juggler by the name of Vladik Myagostup. I have never seen anything like him before. He juggled 7 balls at a time at one point with his feet, neck, and head...oh and he basically did an acrobatic dance/tumbling/contortionist routine the whole flipping time... my word.

The couple in this photo are not dancing. Oh no, they are flying in giant circles 20+ feet above the ground suspended only by those blue sashes wrapped around his biceps. was pretty much crazy like that.

This troupe of acrobats pulled a lot of weight in the show. They balanced large flag poles dove through these rings they are pictured with, jumped through ropes and filled out all the dancing of the show. They were amazing.
And of course the clowns had us laughing ourselves silly with their quirky, offbeat humor. All  in gibberish, all hilarious.

Oh yes, I too have completely run away with the circus...if you ever get the chance, I hope you do too!


  1. Oh how nice! I've been wanting to see a Cirque show for years but so far have had no luck.

  2. Okay, that is just so very cool! And the swinging by bicep sashes...I can do that! Ha!



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