Wednesday, November 13, 2002

Thank goodness the Cirque Du Soleil have brought their latest traveling show, Varekai, to we in the Bay Area.

Despite the storm that caused the cancellation of the opening night performance last week the big yellow and blue striped tent - or, as the Cirque says, "Grand Chapiteau" - remains standing in the parking lot of Pac Bell Park, a colorful anomaly in the generally gray urban landscape at the edge of San Francisco and the steely waters of the bay.

I'm glad because after the disappointment of the GOP sweep on 11/5/02, I can use a good shot of the awe and wonder that the Cirque Du Soleil bring to the world.

This Friday (11/15/02) Sarah, myself and Molly (Sarah's daughter from a previous marriage and one of the sweetest people I have known) will be entering the Grand Chapiteau to escape the so called real world for a couple of hours. The Cirque is much more than mere escapism for me, however. I find the combination of imagination and sheer physical execution these folks produce very often transcendent and, subsequently, inspirational.

I have been a huge Cirque fan for a few years now thanks to the above mentioned Molly, who provided me one day with a copy of the soundtrack of what I would soon know to be one of the Cirque's best shows, Quidam. I was captivated by the music - ethereal girl child vocals, dreamtime melodies, driving rhythms conjuring magic in my head - and knew I had to see the show from which this audio delight had come. We rented the video and I ended up watching it from beginning to end three times in two days! I have done this since with select films but this was a first. Not a traditional circus fan at all, I was enchanted by Quidam's amazing blend of theater arts, gravity defying acrobatics and otherworldly music. I had to see more and quickly hunted down all the Cirque shows I could find on video.

Cirque Reinvente, Nouvelle Experience, and especially Saltimbanco only increased my admiration for this amazing troupe. A filmed Cirque performance is magical but no screen is large enough to contain all the wonder that is the Cirque Du Soleil. I know because I was fortunate enough to see their last touring show, Dralion in '99 sometime before the Orlando incident, and the permanent show, La Nouba while we were in Orlando.

I'm about due, as I say, for a trip to the world of the Cirque. Don't be surprised if this site is not updated again. Sarah and I might just run away from this world and into that one for good. No, it might be better to enter the Grand Chapiteau and bring some of that magic back to this world. God knows we could use it.

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