13 July 2013


We’re on a roll now, as we near the end of the Festival Montréal Complètement Cirque http://montrealcompletementcirque.com/. Australia’s C!RCA http://circa.org.au/, whose shows we have so appreciated in the past, brought us “S” at the Théatre du Nouveau Monde, and we all lapped it up!

Something that has always been wonderful about C!RCA is their ability to blur the lines between “carriers” and “flyers” — you can picture the distinction between those who ride and are tossed about and those who are ridden and do the tossing. This blurring extends to the roles taken by men and women, too, as everyone, or almost everyone, seems to have a chance in each of those roles.
There were some extremely beautiful elements of the show, like the juxtaposition of colours that really made the hoops glow and blur as they were manipulated, the black silks on a black background that made them not so much disappear as blend into the show in different ways.

Let’s talk about those silks a bit. One made an entrance as wrapping around one of the performers, who didn’t emerge until after the silk had been attached to the cable and elevated, and the performer inside climbed inside it, entirely hidden from our view, but obviously moving upward within the silk. Another was seized and spun by a performer who never left the ground, but kept rotating and moving like a tornado skipping around in a tight circle. I liked that we didn’t see a lot of the “traditional” type silk stunts (wrap myself in it and spin my way earthward), but saw some new things, including dropping from the silks to be caught by others below.
It was a show of non-stop action, too. Not a performer doing something while the others caught their breath elsewhere, but almost everyone on the go for the entire hour and a half. Must be exhausting! And with all of that, touches of humour and personality that made us believe that they were truly enjoying themselves and that they operate very smoothly as a group. Even the towelling down of some of the performers by others in the midst of the show was smoothly integrated and made us giggle.
One of the funniest moments involved some props. Bowls of water that were carefully carried in, balanced on various people’s heads, arms, hands, backs, even as they executed some very balance-defying moves. At one point, each of them balanced his or her bowl of water in various ways on one guy. As he struggled to hold his position and keep the bowls and their water in balance, the rest of them cavorted behind him in the joy of their liberation from the responsibility and in a way mocking his burden.

No short video can really capture the magic, but this one makes a good stab at it:

This is the third C!RCA show we have seen in Montréal, if I am not mistaken. I hope the message they got at the end of this performance will ensure that every one of their shows comes here. I’ll be first in line to buy my ticket.

No comments: