NEW YORK – Cirque du Soleil has dazzled fans for years with remarkable shows full of imagination and wonder. Kurios: Cabinet of Curiosities is no exception.
The show running through December at Randalls Island is a wonderful experience for all ages with the beautiful singing voice of Eirini Tornesaki adding a unifying element of music throughout.
If you listen carefully, you will hear some Greek, English, French, and the two invented Cirque du Soleil languages in the songs Tornesaki sings.
The magical quality of the show is enhanced by the music as well as the visual spectacle fans have come to expect of Cirque du Soleil.
The artists, acrobats and contortionists among them, are impressive. The audience gasps at the feats of flexibility and strength demonstrated by these skilled performers, many of whom have been with Cirque du Soleil for years.
As Tornesaki mentioned in an interview with The National Herald, some performers have been with the Canadian company since it was founded in 1984.
There is also a great deal of collaboration with the artists involved in each production. The parts are often tailored to the skills and talents of the performers, creating the unique theatrical experience only Cirque du Soleil can produce.
Kurios incorporates steampunk elements that create an atmosphere seemingly set in the past but with a difference. What might seem like the nineteenth or early twentieth century is tinged with futuristic aspects to create a magical effect.
As with most Cirque du Soleil shows, the emphasis, rarely on plot, focuses on the fanciful characters who don’t quite adhere to the rules of gravity.
The incredible acrobatic displays, balancing, juggling, people flying through the air, whimsical comic performances, keep the audience riveted.
The spectacle often defies description. According to the website, describing Kurios, “a Seeker discovers that in order to glimpse the marvels that lie just below the surface, we must first learn to close our eyes.” This wonderful encouragement to dream is then realized in the show.
“In his larger-than-life curio cabinet, the Seeker is convinced that there exists a hidden, invisible world – a place where the craziest ideas and the grandest dreams lay waiting.
A collection of otherworldly characters suddenly steps into his makeshift mechanical world. When the outlandish, benevolent characters turn his world upside down with a touch of poetry and humor in an attempt to ignite the Seeker’s imagination, his curios jump to life one by one before his very eyes. What if by engaging our imagination and opening our minds we could unlock the door to a world of wonders?”
Toresaki is also not the only Greek involved in the production. Makeup designer Eleni Uranis joined Cirque du Soleil in 1989 as Assistant to Costume Designer Dominique Lemieux.
She then worked on various shows, where she was responsible for materials research, fittings, and artistic quality control. In 2004, Uranis joined the Cirque du Soleil make-up workshop, where her ideas were brought to life by the artists of Dralion.
Between 2004 and 2006, Uranis assisted Make-up Designer Nathalie Gagné with several shows and, in 2005, she designed the make-up for Reflections in Blue, the show Cirque produced for the opening ceremonies of the XI FINA World Aquatic Championships.
With KURIOS – Cabinet of curiosities, Uranis is designing the make-up for her seventh Cirque du Soleil production after Dralion, Wintuk, ZED, Banana Shpeel, Zarkana, and Amaluna.
Cirque du Soleil Kurios: Cabinet of Curiosities runs through November 27 at Randalls Island in New York and then continues its tour in Miami, starting December 10, Dallas, on February 17, and Houston on April 6.