Cirque du Soleil’s latest touring show, “Amaluna” is currently playing under the blue and gold striped big top next to San Francisco’s AT&T Park. Unlike the big Las Vegas Cirque du Soleil productions held in huge, glossy theaters, this traveling show embodies the casual atmosphere of a circus while providing a magical theatrical gathering. The scent of freshly-popped popcorn wafts through the air, and the theater is intimate, with stadium seating radiating outwards from a central stage. Best of all, due to the small scale, there really isn't a bad seat in the house.
An Enchanted Island of Goddesses
The show’s story takes place on a mysterious island governed by Goddesses and guided by the cycles of the moon. There is a definitive feminine quality to the production. The show’s musical score highlights female electric guitarists. The set design showcases enchanted island motifs with a forest backdrop of winding bamboo branches that change colors with the lights and cast shadows throughout the big top. There is also an overwhelming water theme and parts of the performance take place underwater in a small glass orb.
The Amaluna Storyline
Prospera, queen of the island, holds a coming-of-age ceremony for her daughter that symbolizes femininity, renewal, balance, and rebirth. In the wake of a storm, a group of young men land on the island and what follows is an epic love story between Prospera’s daughter and a young suitor, marked by numerous trials the couple must overcome.
Characters & Costumes
The performance features bold characters with a strong female presence like the Peacock Goddess, the Moon Goddess, the Balance Goddess, Valkyries, and Amazons. Dressed in amazing costumes, these characters mesmerize through contortion, juggling, trapeze, trampoline, tightrope, and dance, while clowns provide interludes of comic relief between spellbinding sets of acrobatics. Showcasing over 130 costumes designed by costume designer Mérédith Caron, Amaluna’s costumes manage to draw from the spirit of the Elizabethan period, while evoking a primitive rainforest theme overlaid with contemporary elements that reference the Orient and Scandinavia.
Amaluna is playing in San Francisco through January 12th, 2014 before heading over to San Jose, CA. The show will then move on to NYC, Boston, Washington DC, and finally Atlanta.
Check out Amaluna online for more details and to preview a video of the show.