Friday, April 09, 2010
Cirque Sightings: New Show "Totem" Takes on Evolution ... "Banana," Still Evolving "Under New Management," Follows OVO into New York ...
Charles Darwin, here's your ticket! They're pre-billing it "A fascinating journey into the evolution of mankind." Now evolving out of Montreal mud (and are you envious, Kelly-Miller troupers?), this latest to open up there in Cirque du Soleil land will then leap -- drats, not down here to my neighborhood, but by ions of time over to Amsterdam. Wonder if they'll offer live promo teasers in those famous & racy Amsterdam windows?
Written and directed by evolutionary guide Robert Lepage, with Pedro Pires serving as "Image Content Designer," here are some intriguing early images of acts in progress. And, yes, how shamefully hypocritical of me to actually feature a photo of a variation on the hula hoop. But, hey! These are not your garden variety hoops, right, kids? (My apologies to all circus producers whom I've insulted)
Meanwhile, back on Earth, the terrifically evolved OVO opens in New York at Randall's Island Park on April 17, just in time, me thinks, to reaffirm Cirque's resilient & enduring & impressive credibility before Banana Shpeel, now under "new management" hits the Beacon Theatre stage 12 days later. Gosh, how I'd love to be there. Gotta see if Greyhound has a special on ...
The forever slipping Banana has a new "perfectionist producer" in Marty Schmelky, with major Broadway credits (Phantom, Fiddler, Best Little Banana in Texas, among others), that is --- WAIT! -- until I did some fact checking and learned the guy is a fictional joke. Okay, let the laugh be on me, if it must. What I do for Spangleland. David Shiner is still evidently up for a shiner when Cirque du Vaudeville faces the NY judges, or I'll eat my words if the whole thing backfires into the improbable hit of the century. I can just as easily genuflect to the geniuses of Quebec as I can giggle over a turkey chuckle. Oh, the advantages of borderline schizophrenia. It keeps you balanced.
Gotta give the Cirque King credit. At latitude Laliberte, seems that closing before the point of no return is not an option for the Darwin division.