Cirque du Soleil... on water!
At the Bellagio in Las Vegas, you will find world class acrobats, divers, actors and synchronised swimmers performing in, on and above water to bring you a timeless theatrical performance called “O”. Being a part of the Cirque du Soleil production company, audiences expect and are met with a spectacular performance; the 11 acts are set on a stage that is a 5700m3 pool of water, catering to an audience of 1800 people.
The stage has a number of interesting features which have been added to enhance the performers comfort; it has a specially designed lift that brings the stage up and down in the water, an underwater communication system and regulators that allow the performers to breathe underwater.
The name of the show is pronounced like “eau”, which is the French word for water; the performance is inspired by the elegance of water’s pure form. A tale of romance, surrealism and infinity, this show pays tribute to the beauty of all forms of theatre. In order to tell this story, 85 performers wow the audience with displays including trapeze, synchronised swimming, fire dancing, Russian swing, aerial hoops, and contortion.
There are a host of curious characters that are a part of the show; Philemon, a young boy lost in the world of O, Le Vieux, the guardian of the theatre, Le Travesti, a dancer who wears the clothes of a wicked woman, the masked thief, who plays with fire, and Aurora, who represents the quest of Philemon. One character, called L’Allume, is a pyromaniac who is seen completely set on fire during the performance.
Fast facts about O
- The show has been performed twice daily since 1998
- Sixty loads of laundry are done each night to wash all the costumes used that day
- Some props, such as the model horses, weigh over 400 kg
- The theatre has two main temperature zones; the audience has a lower temperature than the stage. Each seat has a temperature monitor fixed to it to ensure their comfort.
- One of the musical instruments used is over 100 years old
Some performers have multiple sets of the same costume to appear fresh in each act; these have to be replaced every 20 shows because of the high level of bromide and chlorine in the water
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