None of the following images are mine; I don’t take pictures or video of Cirque performances at their request. That doesn’t mean I don’t find helpful ones online from the DVD and promotions etc when I can help it.

For part of the proposal my Fiance prepared, he bought us tickets to Cirque Du Soleil. This year, the traveling circus is entitled:

My heritage is of Mexican extraction partially, so this meant a lot just because of that, but also on top of that, Cirque du Soleil has been a part of my life since my childhood and the combination of those two factors and the sheer beauty of the artistry brought us to tears.

The show opens with hummingbirds and a sea of marigolds! The hummingbirds pull out little wagons with robots on them, that are fully functional and interact with the flowers and audience, without people inside of them. And they have watering cans for heads! It’s so cute.

But then there is the powerful presentation of the running woman and the monarch. The woman running was so incredibly beautiful, that I savor the image. She looked so free, so delighted, going somewhere and taking me with her.

Some of my other favorite highlights include:

The hummingbirds! They are all acrobats and they look like they are flying as they fling themselves through hoops!

And some more random parts:

And the singer’s dress started white and transitioned to red during the show so innocuously I almost missed it:

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Let me conclude my brief all-of-the-photos back to the beginning, since that’s how the ending of the show felt.

Cirque du Soleil has been in my life as a powerful imaginative and transformative force since I was a child.

Starting with Saltimbanco, I was introduced to what I have heard called an operatic dream ballet; all I knew was that it was a world where fantasy and reality collided, the impossible was kissed by the sheer skill of the performers, and the costumes allowed my imagination to spin into rainbows of beauty. It’s a world where gender, skin color, background, anything at all that you might bring to the table doesn’t matter; humans and animals and strange fantastical beings intermingle and the only rule is that you contribute to the most of your capability. If you make yourself the best at leaping from one pole to the next, or tossing a soccer ball around, playing music, or directing the lighting from behind the scenes where no one would think about it, sewing or strength, smarts or flexibility or anything at all, that is what you do. It becomes what no one else can do. Sometimes the simplest talents become the most beautiful and valued.

As I’ve grown, I’ve seen more Cirque; my first experiences were on VHS, and then DVD. But when my fiance heard how much passion I have for this circus, he bought me tickets to the traveling show as it passes through Denver.

We went to see Cirque in person.

I have never felt more like a child, like a princess, like a fantasy or a dream. We walked across the parking lot and the music that I heard took us away even before we got inside. The atmosphere is heady; you breathe it in and it makes your chest explode into galaxies.

Amaluna begins with the sound of rainforest and women’s whispers, with a great arch of reeds or poles or feathers of a peacock, and tells a rendition of Shakespeare’s the Tempest which is all about women’s power and presence, their strength and resources, and a beautiful romance. Of all the women showed, and men as well, I liked best the goddess of balance. She stepped forward in silence and the sound of her own breath, took a feather from her hair and one after another built the ribs of a leaf, or a whale, or something unknown. Even the train whistle that vibrated through the silence of every single one of us holding our breaths didn’t distract her.

Of all the women showed, and men as well, I liked best the goddess of balance. She stepped forward in silence and the sound of her own breath, took a feather from her hair and one after another built the ribs of a leaf, or a whale, or something unknown. Even the train whistle that vibrated through the silence of every single one of us holding our breaths didn’t distract her.

See her do it here at Ted Talks (Without the train): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELROG7uppps

The architecture and artistry of the sets, the costumes, the way each story is created wordlessly makes each experience unreal and somehow precious. And as time has progressed, even the traveling shows have begun to incorporate movement of their stage, water components, and other incredible techniques that further the enchantment.

I went home after that night and dreamed of a world of magic.

The next we saw was Kurios.

Steampunk itself as a genre is a place where that which is outcast, Other, unusual, strange, and generally outside the dominant culture is allowed to play freely with questions of sexuality, gender, race, religion, politics, all set back in an unknown Victorian Era. It is not largely expressed in Western society as having roots outside of Europe, but there is steampunk found across the globe, most notably in New Zealand.

As a culture, it blends well with what Cirque does anyway; take the mundane, the strange, the Other, and make it beautiful, unique, worthwhile and familiar.

Needless to say, I loved every bit of it.

I have watched so many Cirques by way of video, being able to actually breathe the air and see the performers, watch their faces and see them pass by me in the aisles is more than a dream. It’s a realization of a phenomenal presence in my life that has inspired the way I look at life and people and culture, the limits of possibility and imagination. It influences my art, and my writing, and my sense of aesthetic. It has helped make me into the person I am.

So today, when I was blessed enough to see Luzia, it touched me deeply because here was a blending of what made me as a child and what has made my family. I saw people like my uncles and aunts and cousins on that stage, I saw beauty and power and honoring in what is created.

If you ever get the chance, O Reader, I really hope you go. Cirque is my waking dream, not just of Mexico, but of what we can aspire to.

Go dream in the sunlight circus.

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