Home杭州楼凤 › Peek inside the world of Cirque du Soleil ahead of the company’s shows at to Newcastle Entertainment Centre in January

Peek inside the world of Cirque du Soleil ahead of the company’s shows at to Newcastle Entertainment Centre in January

Flying high: Cirque du Soleil’s show Quidam appears at Newcastle Entertainment Centre from January 15 to 24WITHthe flags of 24 countries hanging from the ceiling and hurried conversations peppered with fragments of Russian, French, and English, it feels like I could be at the United Nations –except with muscular shirtless men, tiny women in various states of undress and partially made-up clown faces looking back at me.
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Welcome to the world of Cirque duSoleilwhere show time for the final tour of the long-runningQuidamis getting closer.

Lithe young acrobats practice on blue carpet just behind the stage curtains, laughing and chatting while they effortlessly throw and catch each other with theunexpected background noise of industrial sized washing machines.

After each performance every item of costume that touches the skin of a performer is washed in the portable laundrylining the backstagewall,touring publicist JessicaLeboeufexplains.

“It’s great for us,because we live in hotels we have a schedule to wash our own clothes,” she laughs.

But back to the flags. They aren’t just there to look nice.

WhenQuidamwas takenout from under the big top into arena venues something felt like it was missing backstage,Leboeufsays.

Fluttering around the edge of the big top was the national flag of each cast and crew member on tour.

It was the initiative of n technician Simon Fox to replicate it for the arena tours still in the same deliberate order.

“The Cirque duSoleilflag is in the middle then on each side we put the flags accordingly to how many people are represented from that country,”Leboeufsays.

“At thebeginning of the arena tour it’s been kind of a flag battle between Canada, US, Russia, Ukraine and Brazil.

“Usually if one new person joins and the flag isn’t moved the guys hear about it and at the next city it has to be moved, we take it seriously.”

AsLeboeufeffortlessly navigates me around the maze of temporary dressing rooms, offices, and meal areas backstage it’s hard to believe the show only rolled into town a couple of days before.

Unlike the big top tours which are their own self-sustainingentitywhere everything is packed upeven the toilets,the arena tours take an already built venue and try to transform it into theCirqueworld.

In oneroom two women sit among racks of colourful clothing repairing costumes in a 2500-piece wardrobe department worth $2 million,Leboeuftells me.

Backstage: Wigs and hats used for the show are made in the workshop in Montreal. Cirque du Soleil’s Quidam at Impact Arena, Bangkok August 2015. Photo: Clare Colley.

Another is rearranging one of the 300 pairs of hand-painted shoes that help wardrobe alone fill an entire semi-trailer when it goes on the road.

The n and New Zealand tours markQuidam’slast journey before it is “put to sleep” in February after 20 years, Quidam’sartistic directorMarjonVanGrunsvensays.

The show’s longest serving artist Mark Ward, 50, has never missed a show in his 22 years with Cirque.

Even after 17 years playing the same character inQuidamhe’s yet to lose interest.

“My job is to travel around the world and put a smile on people’s faces and people ‘ask are you bored’ and I think ‘no!’,” he says.

“Each country you go to you have to reinvent yourself. Sure you do the same things, but they mightn’t get the same jokes. It’s always the same, but it’s different.”

Bookings online at ticketek杭州龙凤论坛m.au

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