Written by Matt O'Neill
Monday, 23 July 2012 21:20
An entity unto their own, Cirque Du Soleil have transitioned in recent years from a mere avant-garde contemporary circus company into an internationally successful corporate brand. Their latest production to tour Australia, Ovo is very much reflective of that shift. It is thoroughly immediate, imminently accessible and utterly spectacular – but ultimately somewhat hollow.
From a technical standpoint, it is nigh-immaculate. It practically gleams. Taking place in a specially constructed venue, Ovo's set is a sprawling, amorphous construction that allows for colossal foliage, secret passages, web-like netting, trampolines, high-wires and all manner of intricate, endearing details and devices. The music – performed live by a nine-piece band – is as eclectic in composition as it is precise in delivery.
The performers are especially masterful. From dramatic skills like clowning and audience interaction (a mimed duel to the death being particularly impressive) through to exemplary demonstrations of circus skills like trampolining, chinese pole, trapeze and acrobatics. It's the performers that really shine throughout Ovo. The penultimate scene of the work (a combination of trampolining and wall-crawling) is genuinely mind-blowing.
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