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Friday, 25 January, 2008 1:30 AM
'Saltimbanco' opens at the Joe Louis Arena with lots of jaw-dropping stunts
DETROIT -- Cirque du Soleil, which in French means circus of the sun, arrived in Detroit on Wednesday night. It may have been freezing outside but the Joe Louis Arena was on fire as "Saltimbanco" heated up the stage with fast-paced and heart pounding acrobatic performances that left the crowd in amazement.
The brightly colored set and costumes helped transport everyone from their normal lives into a member of the fantasy land where anything is possible. In Italian, "Saltimbanco" means, “to jump on a bench.” This may sound out, but it was the perfect title.
The show had skits that included the whole cast performing musical numbers that brought this imaginary community together to celebrate life, love and happiness.
Performances included trapeze artist that hung from the ceiling and did death-defying stunts that was thought to be impossible by the human body. There were also acrobats that shocked the crowd by using each other not equipment to create twists and turns that were unbelievable.
Every circus has a man that juggles, but only at the world famous Cirque du Soleil, will you see a man that juggles about ten balls at one time and walks down the stairs while doing so. In between the scenes there was a mime that used only sounds made with his mouth to communicate with the audience.
The comedic intermissions and audience participation created a perfect balance for the dramatic show. No words were used during the show but you did not need any to understand the story of "Saltimbanco." An opera style singer narrated the show; her voice was used to demonstrate the romance and passion of the show.
When the show returned for the second half the audience got a chance to see an acrobat on a bike, synchronized drummers that also took turns doing tricks with a jump rope and the ring master pull a man out of the audience and use him to do an impromptu performance.
Showtimes are 7:30 p.m. tonight, 3:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, and 5 p.m. Sunday, with tickets ranging from $37.50-$67.50; call (313) 983-6606 or visit www.ticketmaster.com.
Photo by Olivier Samson Arcand / © 2007 Cirque du Soleil Inc.
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