Monday, October 29, 2012

Cirque du Soleil: Totem

You’ve probably seen the yellow and blue tent tops pop up at Atlantic Station this fall. That really only means one thing: Cirque du Soleil is back in town!

This year, the touring show making a stop in Atlanta is Totem, which tells the evolution of mankind, from “its original amphibian state to its ultimate desire to fly,” through acrobatics. As you may have guessed, the show features acts like trapeze, bars, perches, and rings, but the most fascinating parts of the show for me were the ones taking place on the ground. 

After seeing the show with friends on opening night, we were all buzzing about the “Unicycles and Bowls” act (that is its real name). These girls rode unicycles in unison while balancing—and later throwing and catching—silver bowls on their heads! It doesn’t sound all that impressive until you see it in person. And when you do, you can’t help but wonder how long it takes to perfect such a skill and how in the world someone comes up with it in the first place. 

The other stand-out act to me was the “Foot Juggling Crystal Ladies” (again, I did not make that name up). While laying on their backs on a stool, these crystal-adorned ladies spun up to five glittery pieces of fabric—on their toes! It’s strange and mesmerizing at the same time and you simply can’t look away. 

The gravity-defying finale was the “Roller Skates” act, where a couple in roller skates spins on a drum-shaped platform not even six feet in diameter while performing the most gripping routines (like the girl twisting in the air while barely attached to the guy). 

All the acts were fascinating, but so were some of the audience members. Atlanta is currently crawling with celebs filming in the city, and the opening night was quite the star-studded affair. Joe Manganiello from “True Blood” and “Magic Mike” made an appearance, several actors from “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” were there, and Scott Wilson, who plays Hershel on “The Walking Dead,” was even nice enough to talk to us! 

THE VERDICT: The show runs through December 23, so instead of taking your family to the movies to see a cheesy romantic comedy (again) this holiday season, head to the Grand Chapiteau and be amazed at what the human body is capable of. Tickets start at $35, which, let’s be honest, isn’t that much more than a movie ticket these days.