Water stage sets tone for Cirque Italia show
IF YOU GO
What: Cirque Italia Water Circus
When: 7:30 p.m. today and Friday; 1:30, 4:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday
Where: Southern Park Mall parking lot
Tickets: start at $10; available in advance by calling 941-8572
By GUY D’ASTOLFO
Cirque Italia’s Water Circus is looking to make a splash at its Mahoning Valley debut.
The new concept starts with traditional European-style circus artists – acrobats, jugglers, aerialists, clowns – and adds a water element and rock-style lighting. The performers are on a stage that is surrounded by a moat, with a curtain of water and fountain jets along the sides.
Cirque Italia will set up in a large tent in the parking lot of Southern Park Mall. Eight performances are scheduled between tonight and Sunday.
Sarah Kessler, a spokesperson for the Florida-based outfit, described what audiences will see.
“There is a portable stage that holds 35,000 gallons of water,” she said, “and a water curtain that marries sound, music and lights to the performance. It’s like a dance club.”
The Water Circus idea originated 2012, a creation of Manuel Rebecchi.
A native of Milan, Italy, Rebecchi spent his teenage years traveling throughout Europe with his late aunt Moira Orfei, who ran the largest circus on the continent.
“He grew up with a love of the circus, and when he came [to America] he wanted to do something different,” said Kessler. “He loves water, so he incorporated it into the show.”
There are only three water stages in the world – one in Las Vegas, another in Dubai, and the third in Cirque Italia’s shows.
One thing the Water Circus does not have is animals.
Instead, the shows – which include artists from throughout the world — put the focus on the pole acrobats, trampolinists, contortionists and other performers.
“It emphasizes human strength and capabilities,” said Kessler.
Cirque Italia’s Water Circus takes place in a climate-controlled big top.
“The farthest seat away is only 40 feet from the stage,” said Kessler. “It’s an intimate setting.”