Douglas Mayo is dazzled by OVO by Cirque Du Soleil at the Royal Albert Hall as once again this talented company make it all look so easy.
Cirque Du Soleil OVO
Royal Albert Hall
I look forward each and every year to Cirque Du Soleil’s residency at the Royal Albert Hall. Year after year some of the world’s finest circus acts combine with the artistic brilliance of Cirque Du Soleil to reawaken my sense of childish wonder as these incredible performers pull off the seemingly impossible. This year Cirque Du Soleil brings OVO to London. OVO (from the egg) takes the audience into a world full of insects, bugs and all manner of creepy crawlies.
OVO’s acts include a remarkable mini army of red ants doing equally remarkable and seemingly impossible tricks with slices of kiwifruit and chunks of mini corn cobbettes, Kyle Cragle’s Dragonfly hand-balancing with incredible dexterity, Majorie Nantel’s aerial silk contortion bringing the emergence of a butterfly from its cocoon to life, Catherine Audy and Alexis Trudel’s Buterflies effortlessly flying around the auditorium on duo straps, Sergyi Rysenko’s Creatura confounding the mind as his part insect – part slinky moves and slithers around the stage with ease, and concluding act one a troop of Russian acrobats performing the Russian Cradle truly bringing to mind the lyric of that old song “They fly through the air with the greatest of ease”, except here there are no trapeze bars, artists are flung by sheer human force!
Act Two sees Ariunsanaa Bataa, Alanna Baker and Majorie Nantel’s Spider’s controtions dazzle, Tony Frebourg’s Firefly sends spinning spools high into the air in impossible numbers, whilst a team of global crickets bounce up and down a large climbing wall making gravity look irrelevant.
For me though, Jiangming Qui’s Male Spider on the slackwire was an absolute highlight of OVO. His effortless handling of this notoriously difficult piece of apparatus was a jaw-dropping part of yet another wonderful Cirque show.
The wonderous acts aside, every year I look forward to entering into the Royal Albert Hall to see just what Cirque’s engineers will have installed into the air above the performing space. When you go to a Cirque show look up in wonderment and try to imagine just what work must go into figuring out what goes where. The sheer physical exertion of some of these acts is incredible and yet this rig of black truss, lighting, sound and equipment copes with it all. Incredible!
The only problem with OVO by Cirque Du Soleil is that it all looks so easy. So talented and skilled are these performers that it looks effortless. Don’t be fooled though its not!