Congratulations Manu Saraswat, you’ve just won two ‘Silver Category’ tickets to the Cirque du Soleil ‘BAZZAR’ performance.
* We’ll be updating you with details of the tickets soon.
As Cirque du Soleil prepares to make its debut in Oman with its production of ‘BAZZAR’, Team Y discovers some of the tricks that have turned it into one of the world’s biggest names in entertainment.
Behind one show business giant is an inspirational story that is nothing short of remarkable.
Cirque du Soleil – the biggest theatrical production outfit in the world – has evolved from the talent and hard work of humble street performers in the hamlet of Baie-Saint-Paul in Quebec, Canada.
It’s a magnificent feat for an entertainment company that was founded in 1984, and started out in a small town with little more than 7,000 residents.
Whether you’re looking for gut-wrenching performances of risky showmanship or themed acts that display cultures from around the world, Cirque du Soleil has you covered.
And BAZZAR, its 43rd production – which is inspired by the ‘colourful and chaotic grand Indian bazaars’ – will be performed over the week of March 28 until April 6 at the Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre.
From start to finish, Susan Gaudreau – the writer and director of BAZZAR – takes us on a journey with the celebrated circus group as she gives us a peek into what makes BAZZAR one of the best live entertainment productions in the world.
Y: Can you tell us a little about the history of Cirque du Soleil – how things have progressed and the hard work that has been put in to turn a humble Canadian production company into an international one?
SG: Cirque du Soleil is nothing like you’ve ever seen before. It started more than 30 years ago when 20 Canadian street performers got together to reinvent circus arts and create a new form of entertainment centred on human performance, without animals. We offer a highly emotional and compelling form of entertainment.
Our shows take the traditional circus arts to a whole new level, mixing state-of-the-art costumes, captivating music and impressive staging, which gives a complete and impressive theatrical experience.
Today, we maintain that leadership by constantly being on the lookout for innovative technology and new types of performance and look for ways to integrate them in our shows. The secret is to never settle and rest on our laurels. We have one motto at Cirque: impossible is only a word.
Y: What are some of the key factors you consider when deciding upon a venue for your production?
SG: Cirque du Soleil creates different formats of shows to fit different types of markets. For Big Top (their large circus arena) and arenas touring shows, cities are determined by their population and the availability of a space well situated in terms of access and visibility. We also create resident shows that are presented in custom-built theatres. These are in markets that offer a constant influx of tourists, like Las Vegas, or Hangzhou, which will host our first resident show in China.BAZZAR is presented in a more flexible and nimble Big Top to respond to the logistical realities of the markets we are aiming to visit. For example, this Big Top requires a smaller site to set up, giving us access to areas where space is limited, such as Mykonos, as well as fewer touring trucks, making it easier to travel to markets where maybe infrastructure is less developed.
Y: Do you tailor your content for the local audience – will we get to see some Arabic touches for the BAZZAR in Oman?
SG: Cirque du Soleil creates shows that are universal. With our touring shows, our goal is to appeal to different audiences from different cultures and sustain the test of time without having to adapt the show to each market. Some of our shows tour the world for as long as 20 years!
That being said, we will sometimes agree to minimal adjustments to the script or costumes, for example, to align with cultural preferences and ensure the success of the show, as long as these changes don’t impact the essence of the show.
Y: As the Sultanate gears up to witness its first Cirque du Soleil production, what can we expect from the team – and how far along have the preparations come?
SG: One month prior the première, a cast and crew of 60 people will be travelling to Oman and working in Muscat to perform and present BAZZAR. We will also need to hire local staff to fill security, catering, wardrobe assistant, ushers and customer experience positions. The artists will start training and rehearse. All Cirque du Soleil staff will work together to be ready to offer the audience an awe-inspiring experience!
Y: Can you reveal the roles of the key performers in the BAZZAR production?
SG: BAZZAR is a new show centered on Cirque du Soleil’s DNA that introduces the essence of what Cirque du Soleil is: stellar human and acrobatic performances, impressive scenography, remarkable aesthetics and live music which give a complete and impressive theatrical experience.
The show features an international cast of 30 performers and musicians supported by 16 members of the technical team. The cast of BAZZAR is showcasing a full range of different disciplines including ‘Mallakhamb’ for the first time.
Cirque du Soleil BAZZAR takes place in an eclectic lab of infinite creativity where a joyful troupe of acrobats, dancers and musicians craft an awe-inspiring spectacle. Led by their maestro, they band together to invent a whimsical one-of-a-kind universe. In a place where the unexpected is expected, the colourful group imagines, builds and invents vibrant scenes in an artistic and acrobatic game.
Question: Where was the Cirque Du Soleil group founded?