FULL OF SURPRISES: Fantastic costumes by Philippe Guillotel enhance the steampunk theme of this Cirque du Soleil production.
FULL OF SURPRISES: Fantastic costumes by Philippe Guillotel enhance the steampunk theme of this Cirque du Soleil production.

REVIEW: A cabinet of steampunk wonders took me back in time

KURIOS, Cabinet of Curiosities, is a Cirque du Soleil show written and directed by Michel Laprise, which premiered on 2014 in Montreal, Quebec.

The show is described as a tale in which time comes to a complete stop, transporting the audience inside a fantasy world where everything is possible.

In this realm set in the latter half of the nineteenth century, reality is quite relative indeed as our perception of it is utterly transformed.

Kurios is Cirque du Soleil's 35th production since 1984.

The newest big top production to tour Australia arrived with a cast of 47 artists from 17 countries including world-class gymnasts, acrobats, contortionists, hand-puppeteers, yoyo wizards, clowns, actors and musicians.

And what a show it is.

It takes a lot to transport a middle-aged reporter back to his childhood years, but that's just what the cast did at the opening night for me.

The night was full of "oh!" and "ah" and I laughed, and I was thrilled, holding my partner's hand tight at times, I was a 7 year-old boy at the circus for the first time and for that feeling, I am grateful.

 

CIRCUS: At Cirque du Soleil's Kurios, the performers takes audiences to a different world, where gravity and danger are more relative than ever.
CIRCUS: At Cirque du Soleil's Kurios, the performers takes audiences to a different world, where gravity and danger are more relative than ever.

 

The steampunk nineteenth century theme fits the circus show to perfection, allowing the production to have a strong sense of nostalgia while allowing them to fly free, figuratively and literally, in terms of imagination and wonder.

The vignettes don't tell a full story, making it even more intriguing, but instead they give you snippets of a wonderful pace, where maybe Dorothy had landed if the tornado had taken her a couple of extra kilometres away, as this cabinet feels like a neighbouring kingdom to Oz.

It is hard to take people to new places with circus, as there is only so many tricks you can make with your body, but this cast and production has taken those tricks to a new level, adding such magic to them that makes them feel fresh and new.

Arguably, one of the best shows of the year, already open.

This is the first time the all new grey-and-white big top has been to Australia. It stands about 20m high and is 51m in diameter.

More than 60 technicians raise more than 100 metal poles in the final step of building the roof of the 'grand chapiteau'. It is supported by four steel masts that each stand at 24m high.

The Big Top can accommodate more than 2,400 people.

The entire site set-up includes installation of the entrance, hospitality and rehearsal tents, administrative offices, workshops and kitchen.

From start to finish, a not-to-be-missed experience for adults and children.

  • At the Big Top, Northshore Hamilton, Brisbane, until February 23. A special performance has been added on Thursday, February 20 to benefit the Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund. For details visit cirquedusoleil.com/kurios


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