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Dance Trapeze

Aerial Strap (Solo)
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Cyr Wheel
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Vocalists & Songs

  "The little girl who plays Zoé in Quidam has a real challenge, because she has to go from singing very tremulously and uncertainly to singing with a strong, full voice." - Benoît Jutras
Composed by Benoît Jutras, the music of Quidam is of remarkable dramatic intensity. Drawing on influences that range from classical music to the most eclectic and contemporary sounds, Jutras's music accompanies, envelopes, and accentuates the magic of the show. It mixes the swelling strings and choruses of classical music with thumping rock beats and synthesized metallic sounds, African rhythm loops with Arabic melodies. There are Gypsy-tinged folk songs, old-time circus sounds and spacey waltzes, a Zydeco tune, syrupy pop songs and a slashing tango inspired by the late Argentine bandoneon master Astor Piazzolla. "When I'm composing for Cirque du Soleil, a lot of my inspiration comes from the work of other creators," he explains.

Working from musical "mood" sketches he had done months before, Jutras wrote much of the "Quidam" music in the three weeks before the show opened. "Often I have to rewrite the piece totally to fit the natural rhythm of the act," he said. "You either try to accentuate that rhythm or play against it, which can be really nice. The music has to enhance the rhythm and emotion of each act, as well as the theatrical mood of the piece as a whole." The clowns, for example, are cast as traditional circus characters, set amid the contemporary Cirque du Soleil. When they appear, Jutras evokes "the circus sounds of the past" with the waltzing "Carrousel," scored for soprano sax, accordion and the synthesized sound of a "cheesy organ" that suggests a calliope.

"And that was the big challenge of Quidam: to maintain unity while dealing with a changing structure, costumes and sets. And, of course, the story..." Because Quidam is first and foremost a story - the tale of human solitude in a world of anonymous faces, on the brink of the third millennium. With his music Benoît Jutras roams the globe, leading us from dream to reality and reality to dream... "I'm working with acrobats from all over the world, so I really wanted a wide range of music to represent different cultures," Jutras said. "Quidam is about the reality of where we are in 1996, in big cities, isolated in the crowd. It deals with the fragility of the human being, and the coldness of the city. I explore that musically. That's why we decided to use a child's voice; It expresses that fragility. And I use a lot of metal sounds. I sampled sounds in a metal shop, hitting all kinds of metals with a hammer."

Juggling the coldness of the faceless masses with the fragile soul of the human individual, Benoît Jutras was able to attain a perfect musical balance. His works, at times stripped down to their simplest instrumental expression and at others built up into full symphonic splendor, reconcile the paradoxes of contemporary society. The impact of the vocals is particularly great, since the composer has selected voices that perfectly complement each other: that of a little girl (his daughter, the charming Audrey Brisson-Jutras), the adult voice of Mathieu Lavoie and, finally, the emotional grandeur of a choir. Eleven years old and a singer and musician in her own right, Audrey accompanied the troupe during its long travels throughout North America. "When it came time to cast the role of Zoé, we ended up choosing my daughter," Jutras reminisces. "It was tough, because I had been touring for years, and now, here she was going on tour for the next four years. At the premiere, I was there as both father and composer, so it was doubly nerve-wracking."

[ VocalistsSongs ]

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    Mathieu Lavoie Apr.23.1996 - Oct.xx.1998 (Montreal to Atlanta)
    Richard Price Jan.xx.1997 - Sep.05.2003; (Costa Mesa to Osaka)
    Jan.xx.2004 - Apr.xx.2004 (Tokyo)
    Craig Jennings Oct.xx.1998 - Nov.xx.2003 (Atlanta to Fukuoka)
    André Boileau Sep.xx.2003 - Jul.xx.2005; (Osaka to Perth)
    Jan.19.2006 - Jul.31.2006; (San Diego to Philadelphia)
    Jan.04.2007 - Feb.22.2009 (Dubai to London)
    Alain Labrie Jul.xx.2005 - Dec.15.2005; (Perth to Hong Kong)
    Jul.xx.2006 - Oct.22.2006 (Philadelphia to St. Louis)
    Jamieson Lindenburg  Feb.xx.2009 - Nov.18.2012; (London to Loveland)
    Jun.06.2013 - Feb.26.2016 (Cedar Rapids to Final)
    Josué Anuar Dec.06.2012 - May.19.2013 (Columbus to Orlando)


    Audrey Brisson-Jutras Apr.23.1996 - Aug.xx.2000 (Montreal to Rotterdam)
    Emily Duncan-Brown Jan.xx.1997 - Dec.xx.1998 (Costa Mesa to Atlanta)
    Amélie Landry Mar.xx.1999 - Apr.xx.2001 (Amsterdam to Antwerp)
    Kathryn Samman Jul.xx.2000 - Jan.xx.2002 (Rotterdam to London)
    Gabrielle Cloutier 2000 - Jun.29.2002 (... to Detroit)
    Denise Stefanie Feb.xx.2002 - Jul.05.2003 (Miami to Nagoya)
    Catherine Downey Aug.28.2002 - Jul.31.2004 (Boston to Calgary)
    Letitia Forbes Jun.xx.2003 - Aug.26.2007 (Nagoya to Shanghai)
    Camille-Hélène Poliquin Jul.23.2004 - Jun.25.2006 (Calgary to Ottawa)
    Tori Letzler Jun.xx.2006 - Aug.12.2007 (Ottawa to Shanghai)
    Dalyane Gauthier-Dumas Aug.xx.2007 - Jan.16.2011 (Shanghai to Chicoutimi)
    Ella Bangs Aug.xx.2007 - Jan.15.2011 (Shanghai to Chicoutimi)
    Joi Marchetti Mar.09.2011 - Jan.xx.2013 (Vancouver to ... )
    Alessandra Gonzalez Mar.10.2011 - Feb.26.2016 (Vancouver to Final)

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    Main Show

    Opening Atmadja ("Petit Salon")
    German Wheel (1996-2012, 2013+) "Procession", Incantation ("German Wheel")
    Hopscotch Interlude Marelle
    Diabolos Enfants d’Acier ("Diabolo"), "Badauds"
    Dans L'Air "Dans L'Air"
    Aerial Contortion in Silk Let Me Fall ("Tissu"), "Isabelle"
    Skipping Ropes Innocence, Zydeko / ("Skipping")
    Aerial Hoops "Coeur Sanglant", Séisouso
    Entr'Acte "Rain"/"Égaré"
    Hand Balancing "Cannes" ("Olga")
    Spanish Webs "Cordes"
    Statues Réveil
    Cloud Swing (1996-2013, 2015) "Petra", Séisouso (2nd Half)
    Banquine Misère
    Finale "Circus Animals", Quidam

    Other Songs

    Manipulation (1996–1998) ("Juggler"), Rivage
    Juggling (1999+) "Juggler" [1999-2004], Rivage
    Clowns (1996–2004) Carrousel
    Aerial Straps (Duo) (2004–2005) Steel Dream
    Hand Balancing (1996-1997) "Équilibre"
    Aerial Strap (Solo) (1997) "Mana"
    Trapeze Duplex(2012) "Cloud Swing", Séisouso
    Hoops (2002-Elena Lev, 2007-2008) "Cannes"
    Manipulation (2005) (Unknown)
    Cyr Wheel (2012-2013) "Procession", Incantation
    John - Coat Rack "Gopher Mambo" by Yma Sumac
    Dance Trapeze (2014+) Steel Dream ("Strapeze")
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