I am so grateful for my InspireMeToday.com family! Because of this blog, I had the great honor and the incredible privilege of being spoiled in a really big way.
My friend Jessica with Cirque du Soleil gifted us with tickets for “O” and backstage passes and great seats for “LOVE” too! I want to share this amazing experience with you and sincerely hope that you too will find a way to experience the magic of Cirque du Soliel for yourself.
You may remember I had the honor of interviewing the founder of Cirque du Soleil, Guy Lalaiberte for InspireMeToday.com. What an amazing creation he has built! From a small band of performers, Cirque expanded rapidly through the 1990s and 2000s, going from one show to approximately 4,000 employees from over 40 countries producing 19 shows in over 271 cities on every continent except Africa and Antarctica, with an estimated annual revenue exceeding US$810 million. The multiple permanent Las Vegas shows alone play to more than 9,000 people a night, 5% of the city’s visitors, adding to the 90 million people who have experienced Cirque worldwide. That’s quite an accomplishment just from one little idea.
“O” is still my favorite. I’ve seen “O” at the Bellagio in Las Vegas several times and I absolutely love it! No matter how many times you see a Cirque performance, it seems different each time. There is so much going on at the same time that it’s impossible to watch everything.
According to Cirque du Soleil, “O” pays tribute to the magic of the theatre—from the simplest street performance to the most lavish of operas—where anything is possible and where the drama of life plays itself out before our very eyes.” That’s an understatement.
This show with its aquatic theme is truly magical. At one point acrobats run out onto a hard stage, dancing and tumbling, then the floor turns to water before your very eyes as acrobats fall from the sky and dive into what was the floor only seconds ago!
Coming from 23 different countries, “O” has an international cast of 85 acrobats, synchronized swimmers, divers and characters performing in, on, and above a 1.5 million-gallon pool. This show premiered in 1998 and has had over 8 million spectators since then!
This show is intense! “O” required more than three years of development, including 12 months of intensive rehearsals. And, their performers are very talented athletes too. Nearly a dozen performers from “O” have taken part in the Olympic Games; some are gold medalists. All of the 150 technicians and 85 cast members have scuba certification; 14 technicians work underwater during every performance. The water is kept at a comfortable 88 degrees. The pool takes 12 hours to fill and the sophisticated filtering system cleans all 1.5 million gallons of water three times a day.
When you put all of the technical stuff aside, it’s hard to put into words what you feel and experience as you’re watching “O”….. creative, perspective altering, unpredictable, brilliant, vibrant colors, busy with so many things going on at once, unbelievable (how’d they do that?!), reality altering, beautiful, sensory overload through sound, sight and scent, incredible inter-dependence between the performers on one another, incredible use of light to change our focus, eerie at times, whimsical, precise yet random, bizarre and filled with high energy….. I walk out of a Cirque performance with the adrenaline coursing through my veins feeling like I too can fly! And that was only the first day!
Day two we enjoyed a back stage tour of LOVE. This show brings the magic of Cirque du Soleil together with the spirit and passion of The Beatles to create an intimate and powerful entertainment experience. The estimated $160 million dollar, custom-built theatre at The Mirage features 360˚ seating, panoramic video projections and surround sound which will envelop the audience, who will experience The Beatles music like never before.
Presented exclusively at The Mirage in Las Vegas, this joint artistic venture marks the first time that The Beatles company, Apple Corps Ltd., has agreed to a major theatrical partnership. LOVE was born out of a personal friendship and mutual admiration between the late George Harrison and Cirque du Soleil founder, Guy Laliberté.
LOVE premiered in June 2006 and has entertained more than 2 million spectators since then. The cast is comprised of 75 artists from 17 different countries.
What makes this show so phenomenal is the sound! Not only the music of the Beatles, but there are 3 speakers in each seat – over 6,500 total in the theatre to create the most complex audio system in the world!
The furthest seat from the absolute center of the stage is only 98′. The closest seat to the absolute center of the stage is 23′ 4″, which is only 2′ 9″ from the edge of the stage. As it was, we were less than 10′ from the edge of the multi-sided, somewhat round stage and I felt like we were a part of the performance.
The cast is so varied. One third of the artists are dancers, one third are character actors and one third are acrobats. The youngest artist in the cast is 9 and the oldest is 74 years old. We saw every ethnic background represented as well.
To the brilliant minds who’ve brought us Cirque du Soleil, thank you! You inspire, you excite, you help us see that reality may not really be real and that our perspective can change in an instant. You show us that art is an integral part of life that enriches our experience of being human in such a beautiful way. Thank you for speaking to all of my senses and once again, for touching my heart with the possibility of a dream.