Squirming up and down the poles, like sprouting vines, they are a symbol of
organic life, which feeds on itself and grows. The glue used on the Chinese Poles
to give the artists a better grip when performing is made from 15 pounds of rosi
rock and 8 bottles of castor oil melted together in a large pot. Mystère goes
through 90 pounds of rosin rock and 768 ounces of castor oil per year.
Chinese arts meets Cirque du Soleil. "Égypte," sets up the this act, featuring
one of the most mysterious entrances of characters ever seen. With a snake charmer-like
theme, the artists who are about to perform the Chinese Poles act come slithering
from all parts of the theatre, which includes climbing down the walls. They appear to
be looking at the audience through ghostly masks that
unexpectedly turn out to be on the backs of their heads.
An echoing double-time bass line signals the
beginning of the Chinese Poles act, this transforms to a
military march-like feel. Two accompanying songs switch
back and forth between René Dupéré's "Rondo" and Benoît
Jutras' "Double Face." The straight 4/4 time signature
follows the performers steady pace of climbing and jumping
between the poles.
One by one they begin their climb up the four Chinese poles
in the center of the stage. Now, very much like Saltimbanco, the 20 men
and women of this troupe jump, swing and fall their way into your
hearts as they perform such depth defying acts of gravity defiance
and show why strength and balance is a must, but unlike Saltimbanco,
one man climbs to the top of the poles and performs an act of
balance very high in the air!