The circus comes to Beirut

 

8:30. Just before the Canadian entertainment company starts its performance, the backstage is bustling. This energy in such a compact space really fits well the idea of a Bazzar. Everybody is holding their breath, but the tension is palpable in the audience. Then, suddenly, it’s euphoria on stage, and the magic truly begins.

Barely five minutes into the show, as I settled into the rhythm of the music, I saw something flickering over the faces of those in the crowd around me: We were seeing ourselves, our identity, echoed back at us. We could relate to that Bazzar unfolding in front of us.

Some will say that the performance was disappointing. But that is not my opinion. The first time I experienced Cirque du Soleil, it was in Oakland, California, in 2002, for a monumental show. So yes, definitely, the grandiosity of the US show was not there, but the spirit of the company sure was.

‘Bazzar’ comes out as an intimate throwback to the company’s early years, simpler beginnings. The production is humbler in ambition and scale than the company’s more iconic shows. It is a montage of Cirque’s signature performances – unnerving trapeze acts, energetic pyro routines and dizzying rollerblading, that still manage to evoke awe and some degree of dread… Indeed. Let’s not forget that earlier this year, an aerialist, who had worked with the company for more than a decade, died after suffering a 50ft fall during a live performance in Florida…

The circus is a place that is usually synonymous with joy and delight. Circuses have always been places of celebration and glee. Well, that is exactly what is was for me yesterday. I was suddenly back into the mind of that little girl dreaming of magical parallel worlds, years ago.
But the thing is that today, it has become an unfortunately common occurrence to face negativity in our little country, negativity born of ignorance or fear or boredom.

What I personally witnessed at the show premiere is an attention to details, lovable characters truly having fun, daring acts. The symbolism was not always obvious, sometimes it was subtle – the beat of a drum or the words in a song. Other times, it was bold. To me, the show felt like an homage to our today’s chaotic world.

It may not have been the grandiose, fantastical, impossible, colossal, unimaginable world of Cirque du Soleil as shown in the US, but it sure was Cirque du Soleil.

So if you want to feel like a child again, don’t hesitate, book now because tickets are limited and will sell out fast.

@solicet.events

@alchemyproject

 

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