Cirque du Soleil and Content Creation

Cirque du Soleil's Luzia at the Toronto Port Lands
Cirque du Soleil’s Luzia at the Toronto Port Lands

Let’s face it: we all crave new content constantly, be it on TV, at the movies, eating out, shopping, or traveling.  Our attention span is low and we want to be doing or experiencing ‘the latest’ – a result of the (social media) world we live in.

Furthermore, with limited time, we are pickier about where and how we spend our dollars and our free time.

Having said that, this week when my daughter and I went to watch one of Cirque du Soleil’s newest shows, Luzia, in Toronto, I knew that the company had to have made some serious changes for me to be impressed.  Cirque du Soleil did not disappoint!

It’s been ten years since we saw a Cirque du Soleil show and a lot has changed.

When we saw Corteo in 2006, it was a show of talent with beautiful costumes. The acts were more classically circus-like with juggling, hand-balancing, vaulting, and tightroping.  This time around, Luzia has progressed to a Cirque du Soleil show with more insightful interpretations and deeper meaning to the acts.

Screen Shot 2016-08-04 at 9.44.49 PMLuzia is ‘a waking dream of Mexico’, focusing on the migration of the monarch butterfly from Canada to Mexico and on Mexico’s architecture, mythology, and climate.  The show has a Broadway-like feel in terms of the costumes and stage sets.  This isn’t your old-fashioned circus, not that Cirque ever was that; it is more about visually understanding the creative nuances via the costumes and acts.  It is also more dance-oriented in some segments with a ballet-like feeling.

Cirque du Soleil's Luzia; photo from
Cirque du Soleil’s Luzia; photo from

The acts that we enjoyed and found to be ‘new content’ and refreshing were:

  • the opening act where a monarch butterfly is running/flying on a treadmill
  • a water machine that rained down in patterns across falling water sheets
  • water and rain as a theme, including an on-stage pool that appeared and disappeared
  • acts involving solo performances like the straps acrobat playing a rain god
  • pole acrobatics
  • a contortionist that was basically a human cobra
  • two powerful singers, one female and one male
  • the costume quality (including flowers on a dress that opened and closed)
  • and, beautifully themed music by Simon Carpentier
Cirque du Soleil's Luzia; photo from
Cirque du Soleil’s Luzia; photo from
Cirque du Soleil's Luzia; photo from
Cirque du Soleil’s Luzia; photo from

As a Canadian who initially settled in Quebec, I’m proud of Cirque du Soleil’s origin in that province.  I’ve heard employees speak at corporate events and I know how seriously creativity is valued and expected.

In looking at the Cirque du Soleil website, the company is further expanding into direct and experiential entertainment, including Paramour (a show specifically created for Broadway that opened in June 2016), art galleries, theme parks, and a Club Med collaboration.  Cirque also recently announced an exciting initiative with the NFL for an ‘immersive and interactive’ experience in Times Square, set for a Fall 2017 opening.

There are currently 21 shows playing in over 70 cities, making it easier to consider Cirque as an entertainment option while traveling or staycationing.

I can’t wait to see more creative content from Cirque du Soleil!

Have you been to a Cirque du Soleil show lately?  What do you think?  I’d love to hear about it.

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