I have always enjoyed Cirque du Soliel. My first experience was seeing Varekai on PBS. I recorded it because it was different and aspects of it were really cool. There was a story tucked in there and it was important to really pay attention in order to see it. I used clips of that show during a skills class I taught early in my career, trying to fortify inferencing skills of my students. I challenged them to tell me what the story was about from watching scenes of the show.
From there, I started going to shows and I’ve seen a bunch of them now. I doubt I could list all of them and a few I saw twice because they were so good, I wanted to bring others to see them too. Kooza was great and I listen to the soundtrack when I’m doing a hands-on project like painting a room or hacking together a bookcase. Ovo was interesting with an insect theme. I also saw Amaluna, which had some amazing feats contained within.
Nothing has compared to KÀ. The power of that show is astounding and I would love to see it again, except it requires a trip to Vegas. If I take trip this year, I want to see Universal and Harry Potter world.
One Cirque show we saw was a bit different. Wintuk had a more direct story told through song. There were still cool tricks and acrobatics and wonderful things to see — dancing dogs come to mind. It was unexpected. Zarkana was also a bit more story and show with less emphasis on the sheer power of Cirque du Soliel, though the sand artist was incredible.
Enter Paramour. It just opened in previews last night and you’d never know it. The show was masterfully done and it truly felt like a Broadway play. And for me, that was its only downside. When I go to see Cirque du Soliel, I want to see the amazing things the performers can do. I want to be transported into an alternate world where everyday humans are performing extraordinary things and it’s all happening live. And there were certainly some phenomenal scenes throughout the show that did just that. I just wanted more of it.
If I had realized going in that I was watching a play that had some acrobatics in it, rather than the other way around, I would have felt differently because my expectations were something else. Funny how our minds work like that. But I guess I didn’t look enough into what the show was about, so that disconnect is on me. It reminded me of the reboot of Pippin on Broadway, if that helps as a reference.
The actors were terrific. The performers were outstanding. The music was catchy and rich. The scenery was wonderful. The story was good. And there were some very creative ways they incorporated the singers/actors into moments with the performers/tumblers. One scene in particular stands out to me as wildly creative and it was really cool what they were doing — I won’t spoil it.
So if you want to see a good show with great performers and some phenomenal acrobatics, then Paramour should be added to your list. Just keep in mind that it’s more story-centered than Circque-centered and you’ll love it.