FUN FACT: I lived in Orlando for almost a decade and never once went to see the Cirque Du Soleil – La Nouba show at Downtown Disney. I always meant to, but since it was always there I assumed I would just “get around to it” at some point. Getting around to it never happened, I now live in South Florida, and I only just got to see my first Cirque performance.
While in Las Vegas, we saw The Beatles LOVE at the Mirage.
So, why would we choose The Beatles themed show as our first foray into these shows? Simple: Shannon loves The Beatles. If there is anything that really proves that she was born about two decades too late it’s her fascination with the music of George, John, Paul and Ringo. Living in our generation, though, has allowed her countless hours of The Beatles: Rock Band, so, in my opinion, it all balances out.
I am familiar with and have a layman’s knowledge of the Beatles and their music. Who doesn’t? Growing up, though, my house wasn’t the most musically inclined environment. I remember my mom constantly reminding me that Elvis was the greatest and I recalled her not exhibiting much enthusiasm for the Fab Four. When I saw her for Thanksgiving last month, I asked her why she didn’t like the Beatles. Her face grimaced at the mention of their name and she explained to me that “The Beatles thought all American girls were twits and looked down on them. They were very pompous.”
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why there is chocolate and vanilla.
Meanwhile, back in Las Vegas: I got up early one morning and walked from the Luxor to Tix 4 Tonight (the Vegas equivalent of New York’s TKTS) to snag our seats for the show. Tickets for where we planned to sit usually run about $130, but we scored a great pair for $95 each. Needless to say, for almost $200 worth of tickets I was really expecting something spectacular.
Happily, The Beatles LOVE lived up to the price of admission.
The show is presented in a theater in the round format where the audience surrounds the stage and everyone watching is presented with the entertainment from differing angles. It’s hard to describe the layout and we weren’t allowed to take pictures. So the photo you see here doesn’t exist:
As you can see we had GREAT seats. We were dead center and high enough up to see the full show. If you ever go see a Cirque show, don’t worry about being close to the stage. If you’re TOO close, you will miss out on the variety of things taking place during the performance.
There is so much to describe from The Beatles LOVE that I could write an entire blog dedicated strictly to the details: the sound system in the theater, the retracting drapery screens, the lighting, the fiber optic rain, the remote control props, the break away sets, the shadow puppetry, the giant cloud sheet in the audience, the cool disappearing effect of the giant cloud sheet in the audience… it goes on and on.
Two of the most delightful elements of the show came in form of the performers and the music.
The performers are a site to behold. Just watching the focus on their faces as they perform feats achieved through years of near perfect physical perfection and coordination is something that can mesmerize even the most stoic observer. Looking at the ripped muscles on their physique immediately made me feel like I had somehow failed human evolution because I wasn’t as awesome as them. The dancing, the webbing and sheer acts of acrobatic amazement made the show something you just couldn’t take your eyes off. I mean, they even had rollerblading on half pipes live on stage, people!
The music was cleverly selected. Did I know all of it? Nope. THAT is the genius to it, though. The writers and creators didn’t just go the easy route with the dozens of pop hits to choose from. The music of The Beatles is an eclectic mix spanning decades, and a number of selected tunes were obviously during the experimental drugged up years. The song choices played directly to the narrative and worked in concert with the stage presentation to make you feel carried along in an experience. It was an audio and visual bonanza that serves less to tell a story and more to create a feeling.
If the other Cirque du Soleil shows are HALF of what The Beatles LOVE was, I may have to take the drive back to Orlando sooner rather than later. 🙂