Thursday, January 13, 2005

A Trip to the Circus

Last night L and I went to the Royal Albert Hall to see Dralion, the Cirque du Soleil show that is currently touring Europe.

The critics haven't been terribly kind to the show and it is true that there isn't much flow between the different acts - no obvious story that ties everything together. However, that's the only thing I can find fault with. Of those shown on the website, the only acts that didn't perform last night were the Double Trapeze and the Foot Juggling.

The other acts were extremely good and my jaw spent most of the performance hanging open in amazement. The juggling routine, especially sticks in my mind because I can juggle and know just how difficult it is to do so to watch this guy use his feet, head, back and legs in a free-flowing routine with three, four and then five balls was spellbinding. For a few brief seconds at the end he even had seven balls going round in the conventional style.

I winced as girl in the Hand Balancing contorted herself around the arm she was balancing on and the Aerial Pas De Deux was passionate and incredible. Other highlights were the Hoop Diving and the Aerial Hoop. The clowns came on between many of the acts and brought a little comic relief to the proceedings but they did seem a little out of place amongst everything else.

The music was very good, if a little strange at times (try marrying a Spanish guitar with oriental singing and see what you get), and there was a great little percussion track, which was played softly on a loop before the performance and during the interval, that had some excellent improvisation around the basic beat. It got into my head and stayed there all night, I think.

Overall, despite the guy in front of leaning forward so I couldn't see part of the stage, I enjoyed it immensely. I could say more but I'd run out of superlatives long before I could do it justice so I'll stop here. If you can get hold of tickets then I would definitely recommend going to see it.

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