Cirque du Soleil launching its first original show since the pandemic

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The Cirque du Soleil unveiled its first authentic present since earlier than the pandemic at a press convention Tuesday morning on the Palais des congrès. However Echo isn’t fully new. It’s a radical revamp of a Cirque present that was presupposed to have its world première below the Huge Prime in April 2020.

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That present, titled Beneath the Identical Sky, by no means opened, shut down like each different Cirque du Soleil manufacturing across the globe by the COVID-19 pandemic. There have been points with the present even earlier than the pandemic scuttled it. A preview for Cirque executives early in 2020 didn’t go properly and the unique author/director/manufacturing designer Es Devlin had already been shifted apart, along with her position described solely as “conceptual assist.”

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The Cirque introduced in new director Mukhtar Omar Sharif Mukhtar within the first months of 2020 and he has been reinventing the present ever since. The unique creation stays Devlin’s work and she or he can also be liable for the set design.

“Sadly we went via this very powerful time period, but it surely allowed us to step again and rethink the artistic intent of the present,” Cirque du Soleil CEO Stéphane Lefebvre stated. “We introduced some new blood into the artistic group and I believe we’ve landed one thing very highly effective as a brand new present.”

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Echo will première below the Huge Prime on the Previous Port starting April 20, with tickets occurring sale Oct. 17. This would be the Cirque’s twentieth Huge Prime present.

Chantal Tremblay, creation director for Echo, stated this can be a very completely different present from Beneath the Identical Sky.

“Visually it’s the identical,” Tremblay stated. “So we’ve got the identical set. However with Mukhtar, we’ve modified the rhythm.”

Tremblay famous that they’d introduced Mukhtar in earlier than the pandemic to collaborate with Devlin, a well known British multimedia artist and stage designer, and Tremblay underlined that it isn’t uncommon for the Cirque artistic group to remodel reveals within the weeks main as much as the première.

“Es has nice concepts, however to place it collectively on stage we would have liked assist and that’s what we did,” Tremblay stated.

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“I think we’ve landed something very powerful as a new show,” Cirque du Soleil CEO Stephane Lefebvre said.
“I believe we’ve landed one thing very highly effective as a brand new present,” Cirque du Soleil CEO Stephane Lefebvre stated. Picture by Pierre Obendrauf /Montreal Gazette

Mukhtar, who lives in Las Vegas, appeared on the press convention through video convention. He stated one of many large adjustments to the present up to now two years was to give attention to in the present day’s youth, a demographic represented by the lead character, a lady named Future, performed by Montreal-based French circus performer Louana Seclet.

“Quite a bit has occurred within the final three or 4 years,” Mukhtar stated. “The best way we predict proper now’s completely different to what it was pre-pandemic. We have a look at life otherwise. We change with one another otherwise. So this was one other large inspiration for me … the final inspiration is the youth of in the present day, the creativity that youth have, their drive. Lastly, the notice that youth have of what’s occurring on this planet.”

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One of many central components within the present is a big two-storey-high dice, which can have acrobats performing in it and on high of it because it strikes across the stage.

Lefebvre stated the Cirque has managed to rebound after a disastrous interval through which all of its reveals have been shuttered. The ensuing lack of virtually all its income compelled the corporate to hunt chapter safety. Now the Montreal-based circus has new homeowners — a collectors group led by Toronto-based funding agency Catalyst Capital Group — and has 15 reveals operating all over the world.

In Las Vegas, the Cirque has seven reveals, the identical quantity it had earlier than the pandemic began, and it has eight touring productions. That’s nonetheless loads fewer than it had pre-COVID, when 44 reveals have been being carried out internationally.

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The primary present in Montreal because the pandemic was a revival of their 2007 hit Kooza and it was the circus’s largest success in Montreal, with 270,000 tickets bought following its première within the Huge Prime within the Previous Port this previous Could.

“We’re so happy with the best way issues have panned out,” Lefebvre stated. “All of our workers put a lot effort into relaunching the reveals. It was an enormous problem, frankly, so folks have labored so exhausting to make it work. A few large surprises we’ve had is that performers wished to return again to work with us they usually have been truly match, which helped the entire relaunch plan. And the response from our fan base was phenomenal. We broke a file for ticket gross sales in Montreal and we had the identical factor in lots of different markets all over the world.”

  1. A scene from Cirque du Soleil's Kooza, in Montreal in 2022.

    Cirque du Soleil returns with an exuberant revival of its hit Kooza

  2. Workers push poles into place to raise the Big Top at Jacques-Cartier Pier in preparation for the Cirque du Soleil's Under the Same Sky in Montreal on Wednesday, March 4, 2020.

    Coronavirus: Cirque du Soleil lays off more than half its staff

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