Friday, September 14, 2012
Cirque Du Soleil present OVO, under the Grand Chapiteau in the Showring at the Entertainment Quarter, Sydney.
OVO is the 25th production of the Cirque Du Soleil. "OVO takes you through a day in the life of the insects. A non-stop riot of energy and movement, the show is a headlong rush into a colourful ecosystem teeming with life, where insects work, crawl, flutter, play, fight and look for love." If you are looking for a reference to the world of this show, think ANTZ, the 1998 Dreamworks Animation, as I, delightfully, did, and you are on your way. That is the super wrapping, visual pleasure, surrounding a spectacular array of physical skills and craft of a super disciplined and gifted kind. A sophisticated circus of pure and immaculate production.
The performers were spectacular, but, what knocks me out and leaves me green with envy, fulminating with want, is the combination of all of the creative elements of this entertainment that is so thorough, seamless and efficient with such high calibre vision and uber-professionalism. The integration of all these complicated and complex energies are simply breathtaking and worth taking pause to admire and appreciate. Not just the performers and performances, then, but the technical feats, (like the arrival of the stage machinery, that facilitates the trampoline act at the end of the show), going constantly on around it, propelling OVO forward with not a heart beat lost.
Writer/Director/and Choreographer, Deborah Colker and the Director of the Creation, Chantal Tremblay have marshaled and synthesised a team of wonderful artists for OVO: Gringo Cardia, Set and Props Designer; Liz Vandal, Costume Designer; Julie Begin, Make-up Designer; Eric Champoux, Lighting Designer; Berna Ceppas, Musical director; Jonathan Deans, Sound Designer; Fred Gerard, Acrobatic Equipment and Rigging Designer; Phillipe Aubertin, Acrobatic Performance Designer; and Benoit Mathieu, Production Manager.
With all of this support, the performing artists and the demonstration of their dedication and craft/artistry seemed apparently easy, and required real after thought from me, to fully appreciate the wonder of these 'magic' human beings. 12 different 'acts' from juggling, a huge mixture of aerial feats, contortionists, and trampolining, provide entertainment and wonder of the highest order – and I mustn't forget the clownish antics as well, that are interwoven into a narrative trail to take us from act to act.
Each of you will have your favorites and mine were the ANTS with their foot juggling; FIREFLY and his Diabolo juggling ricks (Tony Freebourg); a simply amazing and dazzling performance in a marvelous costume in an act called CREATURA (Lee Brearley); Spiderman Slack Wire (Julaiti Ailati) and the ultimate act of the night CRICKETS, a trampoline and wall act - CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON eat your heart out, this live act conquers the impression of my memory of the physical feats in that movie, hands down. Nothing like real live art, is there? When the risks are taken and they dare to fail gloriously, much is, then, experienced. The intensity of the moments, unbelievably lived by us, the audience. Our hearts literally in our mouths, willing the spectacle to keep going without flaw or crash. Danger IS so attractive, is it not? Catharsis, galore. Loved it. A kid again with the eye of an adult. Blissful.
The Costume design is spectacular, both beauty and function. The Choreography, the movement of all the elements, technical as well as artistically, is wonderful - a magnificent feat. The music and the sound design, especially, remarkable in its ability to transport us into a focused immersion of constant delight.
This is my first visit to CIRQUE DU SOLEIL, and I can thoroughly recommend it. It is a great respite of wonderment, and a great way to take pause in this hectic and sometimes awfully confronting world. Go. I can guarantee, for all but the most jaded amongst us, this is a delight for your family and for YOU.
I just read a marvelous review of the latest THEATRE DU SOLEIL (not, CIRQUE DU SOLEL) work under the guidance of Ariane Mnouchkine: LES NAUFRAGES DU FOL ESPOIR. Please can we see her again soon? I saw THE FLOOD DRUMMERS in the Royal Hall of Industries (RHI) at the Entertainment Quarters a few years ago, and last night I was flooded with memories of the high artistic integrity and craftsmanship, of that company, too, as I walked past the RHI to the bus from OVO. Or, is our re-current refugee solution a political obstacle, too insuperable for the facilitation of a visit? The Tampa incident was around then. Madame Mnouchkine was quite outspoken. Ah, well, save the cents, off to Paris or where ever else that company is touring, I guess. The review was of a performance in Edinburgh.