Sunday, July 24, 2011

0018: Cirque du Soleil - Alegria

Just saw Alegria and it was fantastic! It was beautiful and magical. I felt like a child seeing the circus for the first time, the awe and imagination of the show captured my complete attention. Although the venue (Bank Atlantic Center) wasn't as grand as in Las Vegas where I saw my first Cirque, it was still incredible. The beauty and talent of these performers takes you somewhere special. And the set was a bit dark and gothic so I felt like I'd traveled back in time. I'd highly recommend seeing any of Cirque's shows if you ever have the opportunity. So, here is a little insight on this particular show...

  1. Alegria - Promoted as a baroque ode to the energy, grace and power of youth. (Check out this video, it's about 2 and a half minutes.)
  2. Alegria has a cast of 55 performers from 17 countries. Since its inception in 1994, the show has visited more than 65 cities on five continents, performing more than 5,000 times to 10 million people. (Read more.)
  3. Alegría was created for Cirque du Soleil's tenth anniversary; the concept for the show came to life over a dinner conversation between Franco Dragone and Guy Laliberté. Dragone wanted this show to be dark and heavy. "At one point," Dragone said "I was with Guy and I told him the next show would be sad, heavy, really hard: ' AlegríaAlegríaAlegría!' It's Spanish for 'Joy! Joy! Joy!' Where I come from, it's what you say when you're in pain. It means life goes on."
  4. Costing more than $3 million to produce, Alegría makes use of darker lighting and music than previous Cirque productions. The stage and the props use gothic arches and harsh angular designs to attempt to invoke a feeling of oppressiveness. (Read more.) But the adorable clowns made light of it all - 

So, a few other interesting tidbits:
  • Cirque du Soleil ("Circus of the Sun"), is a Canadian company, founded in 1984 by two former street performers, Guy Laliberté and Daniel Gauthier
  • Fire-breathing stilt-walker turned billionaire, Laliberte, aged 51, owns 95 percent of Cirque du Soleil. He was 25 when he founded Cirque du Soleil!! Wonder what his parents thought :-)
  • The shows employ approximately 4,000 people from over 40 countries and generate an estimated annual revenue exceeding US $810 million.
  • The average age of the Cirque du Soleil cast is just over 31.
  • Cirque performers are loved everywhere. They even get invited to throw opening pitches like this CRAZY pitch - check it out here. 

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