Corteo, which means "cortege" in Italian, is a joyous procession, a festive parade imagined by a clown. The show brings together the passion of the actor with the grace and power of the acrobat to plunge the audience into a theatrical world of fun, comedy and spontaneity situated in a mysterious space between heaven and earth.
The clown pictures his own funeral taking place in a carnival atmosphere, watched over by quietly caring angels. Juxtaposing the large with the small, the ridiculous with the tragic and the magic of perfection with the charm of imperfection, the show highlights the strength and fragility of the clown, as well as his wisdom and kindness, to illustrate the portion of humanity that is within each of us. The music, by turns lyrical and playful, carries Corteo through a timeless celebration in which illusion teases reality.
Corteo features a variety of innovative acrobatic equipment elements that were invented at Cirque du Soleil and designed to mesh seamlessly with the set design.
- The “Paradise” act brings together two circus skills that have never been combined before: the Korean Cradle and the Tramponet (a combination of trampoline and safety net). The artists are thrown between three Korean Cradle stations placed at an unprecedented distance from each other, and rebound off the Tramponet, which is 30 m long.
- The “Tournik” consist of a steel frame and twin high bars mounted on the stage turntables.
- The “Lustres” are giant chandeliers that float in mid-air above the stage. They are decorated with some 4,000 sparkling “jewels” and garlands of reflective acrylic spheres.
- There are three custom-built ladders in the show, each designed to meet a different acrobatic demand. They include a bungee ladder and a tall ladder which is almost 4.5 m high.