Cirque du Soleil – Saltimbanco
“To watch a Cirque du Soleil show” has been on my “Bucket List” for quite some time now and I was glad I didn’t have to get older to cross it off 🙂 I came to know about Cirque du Soleil for the first time when I read this book called “The Spark” and have been hooked on to it ever since. Simply put, it is an Experience of Passion and Creativity. Period. Inspiration? Lots!
So, when I got to know their show Saltimbanco is coming to Singapore, I couldn’t resist. (I am yet to get over the guilt of having missed Yanni’s concert when it came sometime back. Ouch! How could I?) I booked for the show nearly two months ago. When I booked on SISTIC, it gave me an option to choose the seats but having never been to Singapore Indoor Stadium, I didn’t know which was better. Thankfully, there was an option called “Let the system choose the best place” and of course, I chose that. Looks that’s not the best after all. It was the last section called Section 230, which is to the corner and doesn’t seem to be an ideal option. So, next time, I am going to choose on my own instead of being at mercy of the so-called “system”.
Thankfully, the staff there showed me to section 123. It was fantastic in the way it was exclusive and all but the view could’ve been better. It was a little near to the Exit with lighting and all. It was distracting a bit.
Nevertheless, the show began. It was really a spectacle with the soulful music and performances. What amazed me was the precision, the synchrony with which each act was enacted and the way props and every person (including a little thing) on the stage integrates with the main act. There is a main act but there may be several people on the same stage at the same time who all either reach or do some gestures complementing the main act or making some funny faces, etc. The ‘integration’ and thoughtfulness of making every single prop on the stage a part of the main act and enhancing the experience is something so perfectly done. And of course, Cirque is famous for the performers moving the props rather than engaging any stagehands. It’s done in such a quick and elegant fashion that you never notice what’s happening or when did they disappear. Because by that time, you are already focussing on another piece or item.
For the entire 2 hours of the show (with 20 minute recess in between), I couldn’t help but wonder how much amount of effort and practice would’ve gone into putting up the show together, not just for the organizers but each of the individual performers. Not until the end of the show do we know that there were at least more than 50 people that performed the various acts. It’s a sight to behold when all of them come and form a semi-circle on the stage and then integrate tightly into a cosy group. I guess if you are an acrobat or ever aspire to be one, being part of Cirque du Soleil’s show may be the equivalent of ascending Mt. Everest.
Without revealing too many details of the show, which could be a spoiler and would rob you off the experience should you ever watch it, I enjoyed all the acts. The music is really touching and is so part of the act. In fact, the musicians on the stage also do a little act to complement the main performers. The colours, lighting, music, performers all get together and leave us enthralled for the entire show, not even giving you a single moment to wander off. When you think this act is almost finished and your mind tries to relax and come back to your world, there comes another one and grasps you by collar before throwing you into another flabbergasting performance leaving you spellbound. All through the show, I can’t help but think of how this could be possible – getting such a huge team of performers together, ensuring they all do their parts perfectly – and that’s a big PERFECT! If not, it may be fatal to the individual itself as well as the fellow-performers. The coordination and trust that you got to have with each other is something underscored in each and every act and the timing is just fantastic. You never know that this is an act. It’s as if you are transported into another land and since all of the acts make it look relaxed, beautiful, graceful, elegant and of course, fun, you don’t mind being coaxed into travelling to that land.. For once!
Want to know more about Cirque du Soleil?
“Each show is a synthesis of circus styles from around the world, with its own central theme and storyline. They draw the audience into the performance through continuous live music, with performers rather than stagehands changing the props.” From wiki