Varekai

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The Tracker's picture
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BUT richasi, Saltimbanco played Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Oceania before it returned to america to be closed. Varekai has not been to anywhere near as many of these places so it is unlikely it will jump back to NA and skip the rest. I don't know why you brought up Kooza, it's a GC show and not retiring either.

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Tracker: I mentioned Kooza because, perhaps you don't recall, the show did a 4 city stint in North America in 2015 as it traveled from Europe to South America (thanks to issues with the presenter in South America). I used the show as an example to suggest Varekai's stint here in North America would NOT be a Saltimbanco multi-city goodbye tour, but rather just a few city stop-over, like Kooza's was.

Saltimbanco under the Grand Chapiteau did something similar durings it's Asia-Pacific tour in 2000 - it stopped in Portland and Seattle on its way from Hong Kong to Japan. Just a quickie :) (But, there was a special circumstance to that too...)

 

Rumors are the show was recently re-filmed for employees - they only generally do that when the show is due to close soon. I have no knoweldge that the show will be closing soon, however, that being said, 2017 is Varekai's 4th full year as an arena show. It's realistically only has a year or two more - Alegria had 5 years, Quidam had a bit more than 5, Dralion had 5 - if that pattern holds out.

I would hope that all shows would do some kind of goodbye tour in North America, but the only one that did so was Saltimbanco. I'm still shocked they allowed Alegria to close in Antwerp and Quidam in Cristchurch without the hometown crowd to bid farewell, but whatever.

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Two long videos of Varekai from different shows earlier this year:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T4_sQ65Z3nA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=utPcyseTiaM

Not a fan at all of the new staging (I last saw it in July/August 2014).  It seems that the show has been completely stripped of meaning and nuance.  The characters (mainly Skywatcher and Guide) seem to have completed the transition into being entirely one-dimensional clowns, and are waaaay too present in the production at this point.  From the opening parade, the Skywatcher is mic'ed way too loud, and he becomes the complete focus of the opening, rather than it being about characters exploring their home as a community.  This makes no sense at all given he has his own routine (sound machine) immediately after this...

It's even worse in Cyr Wheel.  What the hell is Skywatcher doing there?  He's dancing and flailing around in a way that completely upstages the act and makes it look borderline mocking in tone.  Dominic would vomit if he saw this iteration.

Having the whole cast on stage for Flight of Icarus is another puzzling creative choice.  More distractions.

I like Jamieson's voice, although I wish he would learn the words and melody more to songs like Icrarians and Straps (I've always thought the male lead vocal in Straps is one of the strongest moments in the Varekai score; Jamieson hits the notes well, but it really seems like he just doesn't know the song).  His version of Octavio is excellent, though.   Isabelle has gotten a lot more relaxed when it comes to sticking to the score as written, which bothers me a bit but she still sounds decent.  

I feel that the show has turned childish and farce-ish in its old age.  Maybe Cirque would find that they woudn't need to retire teenage shows if they maintained them with stronger artistic direction.  The show seemed dumbed down when I saw it 3 times in 2014, but it still had a sense of wonder and beauty.  That's gone now, unfortunately.  I still hope to catch it once more before it rides off into the sunset, but that matters a lot less to me now after seeing this video.  Shame.

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Yeah, it's a shame what they've done to Varekai. Everything just seems so rushed and the show seems dumbed down.

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cult808: Speaking of bad staging, Volta seems to have really bad staging. The stage looks empty most of the time. So if shows get worse as they get older, then Volta is so screwed.

BTW, are you from Hawaii by any chance?

Cirque Shows Seen: Alegria, Amaluna, Kooza, Kurios (3), Luzia (2), Michael Jackson: Immortal, Quidam, Varekai

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I don't have too many opinions. The tumbling act looks well choreographed and polished. It would be a good fit in Volta. Didn't Fernando the Icarus performer leave recently? A another slipppery surface performer left for Crystal as well. Not sure it's advantegeous to the strength of the show in it's closing months to integreate new/temporary artists.

La Nouba, Corteo, Delirium, Ovo, Quidam, Totem, Saltimbanco, Immortal, Amaluna. 

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Varekai has been awful ever since its transition to Arena tours.

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Rowelle: Nope, Northeast.  Why do you ask?

 

And kraze56, I thought it was watered down but still lovable in 2014.  It seems to have fallen to a new low in the ensuing years.

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And as for Volta, I haven't seen it (and currenty don't have plans to), but Varekai got much, much better in it's first 6 months.  The show was a wreck even coming out of Montreal

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Oh man. Has varekai really hit the fan? So is it best thathe show is closing? BTW is anyone going to the final show, i know im gonna be there ( since i live here :) ). I really want to meet Isabelle since shes a legacy as far as cirque singers.

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I saw Varekai 2 years ago. It wasn't that bad. However, tumbling and baton twirling nearly put me to sleep.

cult808: It's only because of your username. 808 is the area code of the whole state of Hawai'i (Where I was born and raised) and a lot of people from there use 808 on their social media accounts, etc.

Cirque Shows Seen: Alegria, Amaluna, Kooza, Kurios (3), Luzia (2), Michael Jackson: Immortal, Quidam, Varekai

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