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REVIEW: Kurios (Cirque du Soleil)

Kurios: Cabinet of Curiosities is truly a magnificent sight to behold!

Created and directed by Michel Laprise, this newest entry in the Cirque du Soleil touring production series makes for an entertaining and captivating time spent under the big top.  The concept of the show straightforward: the audience is treated to a view of what spills out of the curio cabinet of an ambitious inventor.  His curio cabinet defies the laws of time, space and dimension in order to reinvent everything around him. Suddenly, the visible becomes invisible, perspectives are transformed, and the world is literally turned upside down.

Taking place over the course of several acts, Kurios attempts to manipulate the viewers’ perception of reality via numerous innovative acts that deftly balance humor with acrobatics to create spectacular moments throughout the show.  There are parallel universes, contortionists, an upside down world, a full stage trampoline, an Aviator who flies around the stage performing an incredible feat of balance and more breathtaking displays as the performers defy gravity or invert the laws of physics.

Performances include:

  • Chaos Synchro 1900 (Juggling/Drums): A juggler, percussionists, and dancers perform a fusion of acrobatics, eccentrics, acrobats.
  • Russian Cradle Duo: A catcher flings his partner in the air where she performs more and more intricate somersaults.
  • Aerial Bike: A woman rides a bike which takes off into the air and performs several trapeze-like tricks.
  • Contortion: The four wriggling artists execute a series of pyramids and figures using the Mechanical Hand as a platform.
  • Upside Down World (Handbalancing on Chairs): An upside-down performance and a right-side up performance featuring two acrobats who handbalance on a series of chairs.
  • Rola Bola: An Aviator balances on tubes on a platform while being suspended in mid-air.
  • The Invisible Circus: “You’ve never seen anything like this…and you never will!”
  • Acro Net: Artists jump into the air using a wide net. They are caught and flipped in the air.
  • Comic Act: A man brings a woman from the audience and invites her onstage into his world.
  • Aerial Straps Duo: “Siamese twins” hanging in the air from straps are separated when they fly above the stage in a series of acrobatic figures, sometimes as a pair, sometimes solo.
  • Yo-Yo: 1A and AP World Champion and former Duncan World Tour member Tomonari “Black” Ishiguro performs an act with Yo-Yos.
  • Hands Puppetry: The performers present a story of a person who hip-hops, swims, and later falls in love, using their hands as puppets dressed up in miniature shoes and hats.
  • Banquine: A group of artists perform spectacular sequences of synchronized acrobatics and human pyramids.
    (source: Wikipedia.com, 2017)

Managing to incorporate steampunk to hip-hop, the performances are amazing!  The music, a hypnotic blend of jazz with electro swing, is performed live with a vocalist setting the scene from the background as the jugglers, acrobats, yo-yo performer, and others step forward and do their thing.

Having never experienced Cirque du Soleil and hearing some grumblings from audience members that had less than pleased by the Avatar sourced edition of Cirque du Soleil, I was thrilled by everything I witnessed. The Grand Chapiteau tour which began in Dallas, Texas, has a few more stops before heading across international waters.  When Kurios comes to a city near you, you should definitely give in to your curiosity – you won’t be disappointed!

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Twitter: @illayc
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