Despite the fact that Cirque Du Soleil’s KURIOS doesn’t premiere in Sydney until the 2nd October at the Entertainment Quarter, the promoters arranged a media call today with two of its star performers in attendance in full costume and makeup.
Prior to ‘their reveal, Jeff Lovari, touring Communications Director gave a brief overview of Cirque Du Soleil’s history and status today .
It has its headquarters in Montreal, sprawled over five city blocks, and is the largest live entertainment company in the world.
As well as several permanent residencies in Las Vegas and Florida, Cirque Du Soleil has approximately 25 other circus shows on the go, which has enabled it over the years to have visited 60 countries.
Emphasising the employment of many local tradesmen (for example in the ten day construction of the Big Top), furthermore it did not use any grid electricity but only drew on Sydney’s water supply.
Julie De Simone, head of wardrobe, stressed the high maintenance needed to keep the costumes in sparkling and fresh condition and in good repair for each vigorous performance.
The touring company itself has four seamstresses and draws on another four in each city that it visits.
The show itself owes much to the imagination of Jules Verne and the visual genius of pioneering French filmmaker Georges Melies.
As both worked in the late nineteenth century and drew inspiration from some of the weird and wonderful byproducts of the industrial revolution, the show depicts costumes with a metallic sheen or sparkle with electricity.
KURIOS has a cast of 47 artists with Michel Laprise having written and directed the show. The show is about a scientist (the seeker) who is convinced there exists a place with the craziest ideas and the grandest dreams await. He believes they are contained in a curio cabinet and when he opens it a collection of weird and wonderful hand puppeteers, yo-yo wizards, contortionists, acrobats,clowns, mind readers and musicians. All this is driven by a gypsy jazz soundtrack which was popular in the early 20th century, overlaid by an electro swing soundtrack.
We met two of the characters at the media call. The first character was Klara, the Telegraph of the invisible who can receive alpha waves by clicking her heels and pointing her antenna and hoop skirt in various directions. She is performed by Japanese artist Kazuha Ikeda
The second character we met was Mr Microcosmos, the leader of the group who has what appears to be part of a steam train strapped to his stomach and abdomen. He is also is in an acronet artist in that his stage is a custom- built net that is so finely tuned by standing on its surface Mr Microcosmos can use his legs to modulate the amplitude of the nets bouncing motion, at times creating a sling shot effect that propels his teammates and himself to the top of the Big Top. He is performed by Frenchman Mathieu Hubener.
He is one of over 1400 artists from nearly 50 countries employed by the Cirque Du Soleil group.
KURIOS has an extended season running to 24th November with tickets coming on sale on July 1.
Featured image – Klara The Telegraph of the Invisible. All pics by Ben Apfelbaum