Cirque du Soleil turns Thirty and we welcome new production Totem


Well, this week Cirque turns thirty and next year in April we welcome TOTEM to Brisbane (or see it in Sydney in October)!





On Monday 16 June 2014, Cirque du Soleil officially celebrated its 30th anniversary. This is one of Brisbane’s most loved visiting companies, and has a story to tell like no other. Three decades ago, Cirque du Soleil was the dream of a small community of travelling performers in Quebec, Canada who would do anything to share their love of the circus. The family has grown since then and now includes thousands of dreamers—creators, artists, technicians and workers who toil in the shadows. The dream has become a symbol of Quebec pride, with the international entertainment company having brought 35 large-scale shows to life, 20 of which are still in operation. The company has close to 4,000 employees, including 1,300 performing artists from close to 50 different countries.


You already know one of the Cirque family members – my sister, Analiese, who is currently SM on Michael Jackson The Immortal World Tour, which we saw here last year.


Since 1999, Cirque du Soleil has brought seven of their productions to Australia. Adding a new chapter to Australia’s love affair with Cirque in this 30th anniversary year, the Big Top production TOTEM arrives in Sydney on 28 October and will then tour nationally including seasons in Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.


It all started in Baie-Saint-Paul, a small town near Quebec City, in Canada.  There, in the early eighties, a band of colourful characters roamed the streets, striding on stilts, juggling, dancing, breathing fire, and playing music.  They were Les Échassiers de Baie-Saint-Paul (the Baie-Saint-Paul Stiltwalkers), a street theatre group founded by Gilles Ste-Croix.  The townsfolk were impressed and intrigued by the young performers, which included Guy Laliberté who became the founder of Cirque du Soleil.


The troupe went on to found Le Club des talons hauts (the High Heels Club), which began to attract attention, and Guy Laliberté, Gilles Ste-Croix and their cronies began to cherish a crazy dream: to create a Quebec circus and take the troupe travelling around the world.




In 1984, Quebec City was celebrating the 450th anniversary of Canada’s discovery by Jacques Cartier, and they needed a show that would carry the festivities out across the province. Guy Laliberté presented a proposal for a show called Cirque du Soleil (Circus of the Sun), and succeeded in convincing the organisers. And Cirque du Soleil hasn’t stopped since!





BRISBANE – TOTEM will open on April 10 2015 at Northshore Hamilton, Brisbane






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