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Cirque du soleil review

The show LUZIA by Cirque du Soleil is in San Jose until March, 19

Anne Caillat, Times Staff

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The Canadian troupe Cirque du Soleil has moved to San Jose for its latest show “Luzia: a waking dream of Mexico.” If you haven’t had the chance to see it during their American opening in San Francisco last winter, rush and take your seats for 2 hours of daydreaming in a fantasized Mexico. The show alternates the paintings, and sometimes the clichés, about a Mexico populated by wild animals and multicolored birds, land of football, beaches, songs and dances, amid natives cheerful and welcoming for the foreigner. Bathed in traditional colors, green, yellow, red, and surrounded by Spanish songs, the show director Daniel Finzi Pasca offers to the public a true dive in the heart of a universe worthy of Frida Kahlo. Too caricatural? Maybe, yet magic operates.

The main character, an awkward and endearing hero, is a clown as we love them, who makes both the young and old laugh, who plays with the public and ensures transitions not always easy between the acts. We follow him since his arrival on this dream land and on an initiatory journey that will lead him to a final scene of banquet, joyful and abducted. Like their hero, the spectators are transported into a waking dream, they vibrate with trapeze artists, they hold their breath when acrobats jump from one swing to another, and they marvel at jugglers, contortionists, hoop divers and cyr wheelers, with choreographies closer to dance than to traditional circus.

As the regulars of the troupe know, there are no animals in this circus, or at least not in the classic sense, but in reality animals are everywhere, half-men, half-beasts, rejoicing and moving. The act between Tarzan and the jaguar is particularly successful with plays of light, trapeze and water that sublimate the emotion of the meeting without veiling it.

Finally, the water, which represents the torrential rains brutally overwhelming certain regions of Baja California, is the queen of the show. One might fear the introduction of water into the show an easy argument to make the audience focussing on the technical prowess: 1,585 gallons are filtered, disinfected, maintained at a constant 82°F and recycled for the entire duration of a stay in San Jose. Actually, water is used wisely, present without being disturbing, an unusual element that perfectly complements the painting of tender poetry drawn by the troupe. The water is refreshing, benevolent, playful or torrential according to the scenes, and eventually it becomes a work of art per se.

Yes, there are many lights, colors and even clichés in this show, and few little imperfections among the 44 performers, but all this is forgotten as the paintings succeed each other and we leave the show as we return of a long journey, astonished, amazed, with bits of childhood coming from the depths of oneself. Anyone who wants to be transported on a magical journey should see LUZIA before the circus moves to a new location.

Get your tickets today:

“LUZIA: a waking dream of Mexico”:”Feb. 9 – March 19 Location in 176 Asbury St, San Jose Contact and tickets: cirquedusoleil.com

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Cirque du soleil review