Friday, July 13, 2012

♥ cirque de soleil was in-tents. part 2.

the first thing you can see as you approach 
are the hypnotizing tops of the blue and yellow tents 
of the cirque de soleil. 

even if you have never seen it (i hadn't.)
even if you had never even dreamed about seeing it-
the sight of these colorful tents in broad daylight
will beckon you to them, and even if you do not go right away,
that picture will stay with you as a vague but vibrant memory- 
until one day you get the chance to go.

i recently had the amazing opportunity to see cirque de soleil's 
latest offering in boston, totem, and to take a behind-the-scenes tour of 
everything from the over-the-top set to the one-of-a-kind costumes.

i knew it would be magical, so naturally, i brought

there was no photography allowed during the show-
but i assure you that it was every bit as enchanting as it looks.

i think i said, "OMG- WHAT????!!" during so many of the jaw-dropping acts
that timothy actually threatened to slap my face if i said it one more time.

a few facts about totem, which i gathered from the publicist, francis jalbert:

totem is a 40 million dollar production. 
it takes 7.5 days to set up and 2.5 days to take down. 
it takes 65 semi-trailer trucks to transport.

it took 3 years to create. and 9 months to cast.
50% of the actors have a sports background. 
the cast is made up of 52 talented performers,which include
 acrobats, musicians, singers and actors who come from
8 different countries and speak about 11 different languages.
mostly everyone speaks english.

since its premiere in april 2010, totem has visited 
more than 10 cities from europe to north america.

at this moment, totem is one of 21 unique shows 
that cirque de soleil is presenting around the world!

as soon as you enter the tent, you are invited into a lush and tropical environment,
where the sound of running water, paired with beautiful images taken from all over
the world of rushing waves and receding tides transform your seat into a veritable
rainforest. the tall reeds where frog-costumed dancers leap in and out of, and
where the band plays and sings behind, are actually inflatable and light as a feather.
like a true chameleon, timothy blended right in.

"we may be in a different city at any point in time- but one thing remains the same: 
the artist tent," francis told us. this is the place where the performers go, not to unwind,
after a grueling athletic workout on stage, but rather to keep their workouts going
well into the late hours of the night. 

 i was tired just thinking about how tired they must be
and all of us were astounded to see them still going at it!

the costumes are worn on stage and spend the rest of the evening behind the scenes,
being laundered, patched up, repainted, you name it. i asked if they needed volunteers.
i am still waiting for an answer on that one.

everything is hand-made and precise. each individual hair is placed on the wigs.
the headpieces are made with unmatched technical precision that starts with taking
a 3D scan of a performer's head, which takes 30 seconds and records
over 100 measurements. according to francis, the head room at their head quarters 
in quebec houses over the measurements for the heads of over 1,300 artists. 

the costumes were OFF. THE. CHAINS.

i don't know what i liked more- the frogs, who evoked a sort of alexander mcqueen look
or the crystal man, who was like someone straight off the catwalk of 
maison martin margiela's fall 2012 show.

here are some costume/mask/makeup shots. i must say i had to fight the urge not to dive
 headfirst into the drawer of mac cosmetics. (one of 7 different brands used in the show!)
 the makeup is adapted to the face of each individual performer and is applied step by
painstaking step until "bravo! you look fabulous!"

timothy and i floated away from the show in a complete and utter trance-
and ready to bring a little cirque de soleil into our own lives. 

have you ever been to cirque de soleil???

3 ♥ love notes.:

  1. The show was beyond amazing! And now that I'm seeing these pictures, I'm liking his cuff/bracelet even more.

  2. these pics are fabulous, i'm so glad you shared your experience! i'm going to have to look out for this show, hopefully it'll be near soon!

  3. These photos are so great. Have you read 'The Night Circus'? It was fabulous and these photos so put me in the mood to re-read it!


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