Tag Archives: Circus

REVIEW: Cirque du Soleil OVO – SSE Hydro Arena, Glasgow

Originating in Montreal in 2009, and created to celebrate Cirque du Soleil’s 25th anniversary, OVO is making its way around the country on its debut UK tour. Billed as: “a headlong rush into a colourful ecosystem teeming with life, where insects work, eat, crawl, flutter, play, fight and look for love in a non-stop riot of energy and movement. The insects’ home is a world of biodiversity and beauty filled with noisy action and moments of quiet emotion. OVO is overflowing with contrasts. The hidden, secret world at our feet is revealed as tender and torrid, noisy and quiet, peaceful and chaotic. And as the sun rises on a bright new day the vibrant cycle of insect life begins anew.”

While many of Cirque du Soleil’s themes seem either esoteric or downright baffling, OVO’s insect inspiration seems a match made in heaven for these otherworldly performers. Opening on a colony of foot balancing red ants, the dexterity with which the act manipulates the ‘kiwi fruits’ and ‘sweetcorn’ is mind-boggling.

A plethora of creepy creatures follow, the most stunning of which is the throbbing colony of shimmering beetles that pulsate into life above the auditorium, giving way to the most awe-inspiring, herculean show of strength on the Russian Cradle, their split second timing is heart-stopping.

Impressive too are the unicycling Slack Wire artist, the Diabolo act who manages to keep four illuminated diabolos in constant motion, never missing a beat and the final act, with a dozen acro-athletes trampolining, tumbling and scaling a vast wall in the arena, seeming to defy gravity.

While undoubtedly talented, some acts don’t leave as lasting an impression, the Cocoon aerial silk act, the Slinky-like Creatura and the Acro Trio are skilled performers but lack that certain sparkle that marks the truly memorable and while the ‘clowning’ seems to be less in this production there’s still too much slapstick filler that takes up a lot of time but with little pay-off.

OVO is truly awe-inspiring, a mesmeric showcase of what the human body is capable of. Another must-see from Cirque du Soleil.

Runs at the SEE Hydro Glasgow until Saturday 9 September 2018.

 

REVIEW: Cirque du Soleil Varekai – The Hydro Arena, Glasgow

Having grown from 20 street performers in Quebec in 1984 to the largest theatrical producers on the planet, every superlative that could be, has been bestowed on the global cultural phenomenon that is Cirque du Soleil.

Varekai, in Glasgow this week, is one of the company’s oldest shows, and attempts to weave a narrative around what is basically a jaw-dropping display of what the human body can achieve.

Meaning ‘wherever’ in the Romany language, it draws on the myth of Icarus. However, after flying too close to the sun there the similarities with the Greek myth ends, and instead of plummeting into the sea and drowning, our hero lands in a verdant forest filled with magical creatures.

This enchanted realm teams with life and the magical creatures are attired in Cirque du Soleil’s trademark style, eye-poppingly coloured, the fabulously adorned costumes prove to be a visual feast.

But it’s not the eye-catching costumes, nor the gloriously voiced singers or first-rate musicians delivering the pounding soundtrack that steal the show, rather it’s the astoundingly talented cast, displaying feats of physical prowess that are frankly unbelievable.

Among many stand-outs, the male Aerial Strap duo, the stick balancing act and the Russian Swing troupe, particularly impress.

Despite the scale of the arena production, there is an intimacy to the show and the heart-stopping moments of astonishing courage and skill, register ever more greatly because of this.

Cirque du Soleil is everything people say it is – jaw-dropping, eye-popping and heart-stopping – quite simply the very best of the best.

Catch the global phenomenon at The Hydro Glasgow until 19 March 2017.

All images provide by and used with permission from Perla Global Media for Cirque du Soleil.

REVIEW: Cirque du Soleil – Dralion SSE Hydro Arena, Glasgow

Cirque du Soleil’s Dralion has arrived spectacularly in Glasgow, drawing inspiration from Eastern philosophy and its quest for harmony between humans and nature (the name itself derived from the eastern dragon and the western lion), the four elements of nature take human form, each represented by its own evocative colour: air=blue, water=green, fire=red and earth=ochre, and as cultures blend, man and nature become one and harmony is achieved.

costume02It is a rare and wonderful thing to see true mastery of a craft, and after thirty years, Cirque du Soleil are true masters of theirs. Seamlessly blending jaw-dropping circus acts with live music and song this is a sensory stimulating spectacular of stunning quality.

The acts are listed simply: trampoline, juggling, skipping ropes, … but none conform to any idea that the layman has of these terms.The ‘trampoline’ is a seemingly effortless, gravity defying show of superhero skills which is astounding in its display of strength and control.

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The ‘juggler’ combines acrobatics, choreography and the mere task of keeping an astonishing nine balls in the air!

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And ‘skipping ropes’ isn’t your usual playground game, instead it’s a sixteen person human tower skipping in unison (see the trailer below). The rest of the acts are equally, if not even more breath-taking, including hoop diving, single hand balancing, diabolos and a mesmerisingly beautiful aerial pas de deux.

3804_hoops-740_r667d186Underpinning the visual narrative of the show is a hypnotic musical score performed by two truly gifted vocalists who sing in Cirque du Soleil’s unique invented language accompanied by a six-piece live band and a trio of chaotic clowns who entertain the crowd both before and during the show.

A spectacle in the true sense of the word, this is the show and Cirque du Soleil the company to blow any pre-conceptions or prejudices you have about the circus away. An astounding visual treat from start to finish.

For more information about Cirque du Soleil, visit http://www.cirquedusoleil.com.

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Photo Credits: Daniel Desmarais Costumes: Fran√ßois Barbeau © 2010 Cirque du Soleil

All images for promotional use only and may not be copied for personal use.