Cirque du Soleil's Alegria - A Review

Cirque du Soleil's reboot of Alegría is mesmerizing from beginning to end...




Cirque du Soleil's revival of its signature production 'Alegría', recently opened in Toronto, under the Big Top at Ontario Place. The touring company's most iconic and beloved production that helped launch the company internationally, has been brought back to life.

The show first premiered in 1994 and has been seen by more than 14 million spectators worldwide. Now, Cirque du Soleil has created a distinctive new version of Alegría to commemorate the show's 25th anniversary, for audiences to discover or rediscover. The production continues to share its timeless theme of resilience and hope, keeping its beautiful signature songs, acrobatics and the archetypal characters that have helped shape Cirque du Soleil. It explores themes that remain relevant despite the passage of time—the quest for power, the thirst for change, and the triumph of light over darkness. 

The reincarnation of Alegría is a successful one and the entire show has an ongoing sense of spectacle. There are new striking costumes, dazzling set pieces, updated musical arrangements​ and renewed, awe-inspiring acts that don't disappoint. Every element of the show, from the jaw dropping acrobatics, to the music, costumes, set, props and lighting, come together in the most harmonious and elegant way. The house troupe and the adorable clowns all keep the crowd amused with their heartwarming routines, between acts. Everything that happens at Alegría is part of the show. The equipment is changed by performers and done seamlessly, with artistic flair. Two magnificent singers, one representing light and the other shadow, along with live musicians, accompany the show throughout.

The magic starts with a trapeze duo performing near-mirror images on separate bars, and ends more than two hours later with the thrilling Flying Lev, a Russian team of aerialists that combine the art of trapeze with uneven parallel bars gymnastics. And in between, the shows fills with an array of dazzling acts: an artist becomes a human gyroscope as he performs fluid acrobatics inside and around two intersecting wheels; two artists perform intricate spins and breathtaking manoeuvres in perfect sync; an artist demonstrates complete mastery of his craft in a Fire Knife Dance; an exceptionally dynamic aerial straps duo form striking geometric patterns high above the stage; an exquisite artist displays her ability to spin and twirl a multitude of hoops using all her limbs and her entire body; tumblers brimming with talent and torque demonstrate their prowess as they soar into the air while executing dynamic gymnastics on trampolines; and two female performers demonstrate great strength, balance and flexibility in a yin-and-yang hand-to-hand number. All is led by Mr. Fleur, the ringmaster — a tricky and power-hungry man who proclaims himself king. Alegría is absolutely stunning and the performances are mesmerizing from beginning to end.

This year, Cirque du Soleil also brings the show back under the classic circus tent. In this more intimate venue, every seat gives you a great view. This joyful and brilliant show is recommended for all, so join in the revelry under the magnificent Big Top. Alegría runs until November 24.

Ticket and show info at www.cirquedusoleil.com/alegria.

Photo Credit: Marie-Andrée Lemire 
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