A BIG TOP FULL OF DREAMS
"Welcome to our big top full of dreams," exclaimed Guy Laliberté
in 1988, after the smashing success of Le Cirque Réinventé.
He repeated this welcome four years later, only this time not in French or English
but in Japanese.
Cirque du Soleil crosses the Pacific and makes a name for itself in the
Land of the Rising Sun with Facsination,
a collage of the best acts from
Le Cirque Réinventé and
The show opens in Tokyo and
then moves on to seven other cities, for a total of 118 performances in
4 months. Over 560,000 (569,883) people see the show. Meanwhile, in Europe,
Cirque du Soleil joins forces with Switzerland's
Circus Knie and stages a
show in over 60 towns throughout the country. In North America, Cirque du
Soleil makes its Las Vegas debut when Nouvelle Expérience
kicks off a year-long engagement under a big top at the Mirage Hotel. Already juggling
several productions, Cirque adds a monument to its repertoire of shows:
Premiering in Montreal, this latest production is a celebration
of life. Designed as an antidote to the violence and despair of the 20th
century, this phantasmagoric show offers an alternative view of the urban
environment brimming with optimism and joy.
Although Cirque wouldn't know it at the time – couldn't know it, really –
would change the course of the company’s history forever.
Though Cirque found success with Le Cirque Réinventé
(1987-1990) and compounded that success with
Nouvelle Expérience (1990-1993),
it would be Saltimbanco’s
colorful explosion of artistry, depth and emotion that would
catapult Cirque du Soleil into the realm of avant-garde masters, where it
would remain for decades to come. Developed under the direction and vision
of Franco Dragone, and polished with the assistance of a coven of creative
is considered one of the first Cirque du Soleil
productions to focus entirely on a specific set of themes and ideas, presented
to the audience without bias or without explanation; a method that would
become the signature of Cirque du Soleil for years to come: “the vague intuition”.