Guest Review: Cirque du Soleil at The O2 Arena

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We can’t keep the lovely Dinah and Annette away from The O2 this year! Read their latest guest reviews about the spectacular Cirque du Soleil here…

cirque-du-soleil-bannerReview by Dinah Burke

We were privileged to watch Cirque du Soleil’s performance of “Dralion” – a fusion of Eastern and Western culture – at The O2 Arena on Saturday 7th June and it was a mesmerizing performance. We had previously seen one of their performances at the same arena in July 2013 so were eagerly anticipating a similar treat.

This time round the stunning acrobatics, jaw-dropping juggling and arresting music were given full vent while the clowns seemed to be more fun than before. A particularly strong feature that brought gasps of admiration at times from the audience was the trampolinists. Choreographed to the last milli -second, the performers seemed to emerge from the giant claws attached to the metallic wall spanning the full width of the stage. The wall allowed them to climb and suspend themselves when not dropping or bouncing or criss-crossing each other in bewildering patterns.

Skipping took on a whole new dimension with a human pyramid successfully negotiating the ropes. One could only imagine how long the performance in the crossed wheel had taken to perfect. Making something look so effortless doesn’t seem fair to the skill level of the performers. We’d had a go at the diabolo once – one circle – but the single hand balancing with body positions which could bring tears to your eyes was something else.

The cavernous expanse of The O2 showcased the mammoth structure that dominated the stage and provided a backdrop for the performers. Three concentric aluminium rings were suspended mysteriously high above the stage and formed an arresting visual presence. In fact, one served as a catwalk for the performers, the second was used to support technical equipment and the third to transport performers around the structure. Anybody studying logistics would have been captivated.

The costumes were colourful, eye-catching, creative and seemed to be custom-made for each performer. As usual in The O2 all-round visibility was available for the audience and the sound system was spectacular.

Transport links to The O2 are now excellent whether by bus, water-taxi, tube line, docklands light railway or the “Emirates air link” with the Royal Victoria Dock and associated hotels. It is almost impossible to believe that 25 years ago this part of the Greenwich peninsula was characterised by dereliction, decay, pollution and a sense of hopelessness.

Review by Annette Hogan

What an amazing show – you can definitely see the circus theme with a ringmaster, animals – artists dressed up as lizards and lions, as well as acrobats. It was so perfect and the comedic side was also excellent.

How flexible are the acrobats? They don’t seem to have any bones, they can bend into shapes the rest of us can only dream of! There were so many amazing acts but I think the ones I loved the most were the couple who performed an acrobatic dance filled with romance and angst, and the wall acrobats who climbed walls with just a trampoline to take them to the top.

Everything was done to split second timing – such an excellent evening, and it went so fast. My second time of seeing Cirque du Soleil and I would go again any day.

Were you lucky enough to see Cirque du Soleil or any other events at The O2 this year? Let us now your thoughts on this amazing event by filling in the comments box below. 

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