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Creators

 

Creators

  • Guy Laliberté

    Founder and Creative Guide

    Guy Laliberté was born in Québec City in 1959. An accordionist, stilt-walker and fire-eater, he founded Quebec's first internationally-renowned circus with the support of a small group of accomplices. A bold visionary, Guy Laliberté recognized and cultivated the talents of the street performers from the Fête foraine de Baie-Saint-Paul and created Cirque du Soleil in 1984.

    Guy Laliberté was the first to orchestrate the marriage of cultures and artistic and acrobatic disciplines that is the hallmark of Cirque du Soleil. Since 1984, he has guided the creative team through the creation of every show and contributed to elevating the circus arts to the level of the great artistic disciplines.

    Cirque du Soleil has become an international organization, as much in terms of its makeup as in the scope of its activities and influence. Guy Laliberté now heads an organization with activities on five continents.

    In October 2007, Guy Laliberté entered into a second lifetime commitment by creating the ONE DROP Foundation to fight poverty around the world by providing sustainable access to safe water.  This new dream stems from the knowledge that the right to water is key to the survival of individuals and communities all over the world and from the values which have been at the heart of Cirque du Soleil since its inception:  the belief that life gives back what you have given and even the smallest gesture will make a difference.

    In September 2009, Guy Laliberté became the first Canadian private space explorer.  His mission was dedicated to raising awareness on water issues facing humankind on planet earth. Under the theme Moving Stars and Earth for Water, this first Poetic Social Mission in space aimed at touching people through an artistic approach: a special 120-minute webcast program featuring various artistic performances unfolding in 14 cities on five continents, including the International Space Station.

    Main Awards and Distinctions
    In 2012, Guy Laliberté was inducted into the American Gaming Association’s Gaming Hall of Fame. In 2011, he became one of the inductees of the Canadian Business Hall of Fame. Guy Laliberté was awarded his very own star on the legendary Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2010. In the same year, the Quebec government honoured Guy by promoting him from Chevalier (a distinction granted six years earlier) to Officier as a member of the Ordre de la Pléiade. Université Laval (Québec) awarded an honorary doctorate to Guy Laliberté in 2008. The year before, Guy Laliberté took the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award for all three levels: Quebec, Canada and international. In 2004, he received the Order of Canada, the highest distinction in the country, from the Governor General of Canada.  The same year, he was recognized by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world. In 2003, he was honoured by the Condé Nast group as part of the Never Follow Program, a tribute to creators and innovators. In 2001, he was named a Great Montrealer by the Académie des Grands Montréalais. In 1997, Guy Laliberté received the Ordre National du Québec, the highest distinction awarded by the Government of Quebec.

    Other awards and distinctions

    2009
    Lifetime Achievement Award granted by the Canadian Marketing Association

    2002
    Induction to Canada’s Walk of Fame

    1998
    Visionary Award granted by the American Craft Museum (now the Museum of Arts and Design in New York)

    1996
    Vision nouvelle award received at the 43rd Gala du Commerce (Quebec)

    1988
    Personality of the Year, Gala Excellence La Presse (Quebec)

    1988
    Entrepreneur of the Year, Les Affaires magazine (Quebec)

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  • Gilles Ste-Croix

    Artistic Guide

    When Gilles Ste-Croix first told his parents he wanted to go into show business they said “Anything but that!” Ste-Croix grew up in rural Quebec, but he was determined not to stay there. He became a hippie and a nomad, living in communes and making the obligatory ‘60s pilgrimage to the West Coast where he lived in communes and audited some drama classes.

    Ste-Croix did try to conform, even working in an architect’s office for a while, but he knew in his heart that he wasn’t cut out for a conventional business career. At the same time, his search for a vocation was not in any way aimless or vague. He says that from his teens he always had a strong drive to succeed and an equally strong desire to entertain. However his entrée into show business came about in a most unusual and unpredictable way.

    In the late 1970s Gilles Ste-Croix was living in a commune in Victoriaville, Quebec, picking apples to make money. One day he mused that the job would be a whole lot easier if he could attach the ladder to his legs—and devised his first set of stilts.

    A friend happened to mention the Bread and Puppet Theater in nearby Vermont, which used stilt-walking as the basis of many of its performances. Ste-Croix went to see the company and realized that his apple-picking skills might actually be in demand in the wider world of entertainment.

    In 1980, Gilles Ste-Croix and a band of street artists founded the Échassiers de Baie-Saint-Paul and organized a street performance festival called the Fête foraine de Baie-Saint-Paul, which would eventually lead to the founding of Cirque du Soleil with Guy Laliberté in 1984.

    In 1984 and 1985, Gilles Ste-Croix designed and performed many stilt acts for Cirque du Soleil. In 1988, he became Cirque's Artistic Director, as well as coordinating a talent search that extended to the four corners of the globe.  He was Director of Creation for all of Cirque du Soleil's productions from 1990 to 2000: Nouvelle Expérience, Saltimbanco, Alegría, Mystère, Quidam, La Nouba, "O", and Dralion.  In 1992, he directed Fascination, the first Cirque du Soleil show presented in arenas in Japan. He also directed the groundbreaking 1997 dinner/cabaret show Pomp Duck and Circumstance in Germany.

    In 2000, while continuing to act as a consultant for Cirque du Soleil, Gilles Ste-Croix decided to realize one of his greatest dreams: Driven by his passionate interest in horses, he founded his own company to produce the 2003 show Cheval-Théâtre, which featured 30 horses and as many artist-acrobats under canvas and toured ten cities in North America.

    Since December 2002, Gilles St-Croix returned to Cirque du Soleil as Vice-President of Creation, New Project Development. In July 2006 he was nominated Senior Vice-President of Creative Content.

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  • Fernand Rainville

    Director of Creation

    A prolific actor and director, Fernand Rainville has been active on the Quebec cultural scene for over 25 years. He made his mark in the theatre world by directing over a hundred creative and repertory theatre plays, both contemporary and classical, as well as large-scale variety shows such as the bilingual production of Les Misérables (1990-1991), Légendes fantastiques (which ran from 1998 to 2007 and earned him the Quebec Tourism Prize) and Saka,an equestrian show performed under a big top between 2007 and 2009. In television, Fernand has worked as Artistic Director for the show Le plaisir croît avec l’usage, which aired on Télé-Québec between 2001 and 2003. He was also responsible for the artistic direction of the opening ceremonies of the Outgames at Montreal’s Olympic Stadium in 2006. Fernand has been working with Cirque du Soleil on a regular basis since 2005. He was co-director for the opening ceremony of the Montreal 2005 – XI FINA World Championships, Director of the Cirque du Soleil pre-game show at the 2007 Miami Superbowl, as well as Director of Creation and Director of Wintuk, a show that ran seasonally for four years at Madison Square Garden's WaMu Theatre in New York. For ONE DROP, Fernand directed the multimedia experience AQUA and, during Guy Laliberté’s journey into space in 2009, he assumed the role of Content Producer and Artistic Director for the Poetic Social Mission event, a show on water-related issues that was broadcast on television and the Internet.

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  • Diane Paulus

    Director

    Diane Paulus is the Artistic Director of the A.R.T. (American Repertory Theatre). Her recent work with A.R.T. includes The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess, a new production adapted by Pulitzer prize-winning playwright Suzan-Lori Parks, and OBIE-winning composer Diedre Murray, playing on Broadway; Prometheus Bound, a new musical inspired by Aeschylus's ancient Greek tragedy, written by Tony and Grammy Award-winner Steven Sater (Spring Awakening) with music composed by Grammy Award-winning System of a Down lead singer Serj Tankian; Death and The Powers: The Robots’ Opera, a new opera by Tod Machover in collaboration with MIT Media Lab, which world premiered at l’Opéra de Monte-Carlo; The Donkey Show, a disco adaptation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which ran for six years Off-Broadway and toured internationally; Best of Both Worlds, and Johnny Baseball. Diane’s other recent theatre credits include the Public Theatre's of HAIR (Tony-Award winning for Best Revival) on Broadway and London’s West End.  She has also directed Kiss Me, Kate (Glimmerglass Opera) and Lost Highway (ENO co-production with the Young Vic) and, as an opera director, The Magic Flute (Canadian Opera Company), Il mondo della luna at the Hayden Planetarium in New York, Don Giovanni, Le nozze di Figaro, Turn Of The Screw, Cosi fan tutte, and the Monteverdi trilogy Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria, L’incoronazione di Poppea, and Orfeo at the Chicago Opera Theatre.  Diane is a Professor of the Practice of Theatre in Harvard University’s English Department and was recently named one of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Boston by BostonMagazine. She is a recipient of an Honorary Doctorate from Boston Conservatory. This is Diane Paulus’ first collaboration with Cirque du Soleil.

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  • Scott Pask

    Set and Props Designer

    Award winning Scenic Designer  Scott Pask has designed a diverse range of productions, both on Broadway and in London. His works for theatre, opera and dance  include The Pillowman, with Billy Crudup and Jeff Goldblum(Tony Award for Best Scenic Design);  A Behanding in Spokane, starring Christopher Walken, and  A Steady Rain,  with Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman.  A long time collaborator of Diane Paulus, Scott has worked on many projects with her, most notably the award winning revival of HAIR on Broadway and in London, as well as The Donkey Show. His numerous Broadway Scenic design credits also include Promises Promises, Pal Joey, Speed The Plow, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, The Vertical Hour, Urinetown, Take Me Out, NINE with Antonio Banderas, La Cage Aux Folles, and The Coast of Utopia  for which he won the Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and Hewes Awards for Best Scenic Design. Most recently he designed the new hit musical The Book Of Mormon and won one of the production’s nine Tony awards for his design. He has also designed Peter Grimes at the Metropolitan Opera. His work has been exhibited at The Prague Quadrennial, The Bruce Museum of Science and Art, The Leslie Lohman Gallery, The Met Gallery, and is in the permanent collection of the McNay Art Museum. Scott Pask works with Cirque du Soleil for the first time.

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  • Mérédith Caron

    Costume Designer

    Mérédith Caron has made her mark in theatre, cinema, opera and circus, not just in Quebec but the world over. With more than 175 collaborations under her belt, Mérédith is one of Canada’s top costume designers. She has worked with some outstanding directors, including Pierre Bernard, Serge Denoncourt, Robert Lepage, Martine Beaulne, René Richard Cyr, André Brassard, Daniele Finzi Pasca and Richard Monette at the prestigious Stratford Festival in Ontario. During her collaborations, Mérédith Caron has received many prestigious awards in Quebec, including a Gémeau, seven Gascon-Roux and two Masque awards. She has been teaching art history and costume design at the National Theatre School of Canada in Montreal for nearly 20 years. She worked with Cirque du Soleil for the first time in 1988, when she designed costumes for a project under development. After CRISS ANGEL Believe, Mérédith is working on her third project with Cirque du Soleil.

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  • Bob & Bill

    Composers and Musical Directors

    Composers and arrangers Guy Dubuc and Marc Lessard (aka Bob & Bill) are well known for their ability to blur the lines between genres and styles. In 2003, they composed the music for Splinter Cell (Pandora Tomorrow), a best-selling Ubisoft video game. They have also produced several albums, including Monica Freire’s Bahiatronica and Pink Floyd Redux, a collection of remixed songs from the British cult band, as well as the soundtrack album for the Cirque du Soleil show KOOZA. In 2004, Bob & Bill supplied the musical direction and arrangements for the Cirque du Soleil show Midnight Sun, as part of the 25th anniversary celebrations of the Montreal International Jazz Festival and the 20th anniversary of Cirque du Soleil. Three-time nominees for a Quebec music industry ADISQ award, the two sidekicks also created the music for several films and television series, and composed the music for Director Robert Lepage’s production Pageant de Canotgraphie. In 2008, the duo launched their first album, Crime Report, a work combining electronic and organic sounds.Bob & Bill worked many times with Cirque du Soleil to create the musical arrangements for several special events. Since 2009, they also acts as composers for Cirque du Soleil. They composed the music for TOTEM (2010), directed by Robert Lepage and Amaluna (2012), directed by Diane Paulus. Bob & Bill also wrote the music for the third and fifth chapters of Les Chemins Invisibles (2011 and 2013), a free outdoor show presented during the summer in Quebec City. KURIOS – Cabinet of Curiosities is their fifth show as composers for Cirque du Soleil.

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  • Jacques Boucher

    Sound Designer

    For over 25 years, Jacques Boucher has been creating sound environments for a number of productions from Quebec and beyond. Jacques also worked as a sound technician for various Quebec artists, including Richard Séguin, Laurence Jalbert, Diane Dufresne and Bruno Pelletier. He went on to develop an expertise in sound design for musicals such as Dracula (2006) and large-scale events, including the mega-show 2000 voix chantent le monde, presented in Quebec City in 2000, with over 2,300 singers on stage. In 2008, Jacques was asked to handle the sound for almost every event presented as part of the celebrations for the 400th anniversary of Quebec City. As Sound Designer and Head of Sound, he designed sound for the Quebec Symphony Orchestra’s performance of the Symphonie des mille by Gustav Mahler, The Image Mill by Robert Lepage, for which he designed the impressive sound system spanning 1.2 km, and the special show presented by Cirque du Soleil. Jacques also works as Sound Designer and Head of Sound for some Cirque du Soleil special events. After TOTEM and Amaluna, he is taking part in his third Cirque du Soleil show with KURIO – Cabinet of curiosities.

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  • Matthieu Larivée

    Lighting Designer

    Matthieu Larivée came up with the ingenious lighting designs for several shows and artistic events in Quebec and throughout Canada. His multidimensional approach and overall vision of the show has allowed him to participate in large-scale projects such as the show Le Petit Roy, directed by Serge Postigo, and Beladi - A night at the Pyramids, a unique show featuring singer Chantal Chamandy and the Cairo Symphony Orchestra, performed in front of the Egyptian pyramids, which allowed Matthieu to emphasize the beauty of such majestic monuments. This international project earned him the MELDA (Middle East Lighting Design Awards) Award in 2007 and recognition from his peers at the 2008 Parnelli Awards in Las Vegas. At the 2010 Gala de l'ADISQ, Matthieu was nominated as “Lighting Designer of the Year” for MusicMan, starring Gregory Charles, and again in 2011 for Roch Voisine’s Americana. Matthieu never hesitates to push the boundaries of his art, incorporating video technology and scenic effects into his projects. For over ten years now, Matthieu Larivée and his Lüz Studio team have been responsible for the visual look of numerous concerts and events, including Canadian Music Week (2010 and 2011), Guy Laliberté’s Poetic Social Mission (an event that took place in 2009 during his eleven-day journey into space on board the International Space Station), the Concerts OSM éclatés, as well as the graphic design for the opening night of the Formula 1 Canadian Grand Prix in 2010. Matthieu has also worked with famous artists such as pianist Michel Legrand and singer Natasha St-Pier. Amaluna marks Matthieu's second time taking part in a Cirque du Soleil show after Wintuk.

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  • Karole Armitage

    Choreographer

    Karole Armitage, director of Armitage Gone! Dance Company based in New York, was rigorously trained in classical ballet. Through her unique and acute knowledge of the aesthetic values of Balanchine and Cunningham, she is seen by some critics as the true choreographic heir to the two masters of twentieth-century American dance. Known as the "Punk Ballerina," Armitage is renowned for pushing the boundaries to create works that blend dance, music and art. Following the premiere of the Watteau Duets, Mikhail Baryshnikov invited her to create a work for the American Ballet Theatre, and Rudolph Nureyev commissioned a work for the Paris Opera Ballet. She has collaborated with contemporary composers and worked with artists such as Jeff Koons, Brice Marden and David Salle. She choreographed two Broadway productions (Passing Strange and Hair, which awarded her a Tony nomination), videos for Madonna and Michael Jackson and several  films. She has set new works on companies that include the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow, Les Ballets de Monte Carlo,  Ballet Naccional de Cuba and  Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre. Her company tours an extensive repertoire and creates site-specific works for festivals and venues worldwide. She has directed operas from the baroque and contemporary repertoire for prestigious houses of Europe, including Teatro Di San Carlo in Naples, Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris, the Lyric Opera in Athens and Het Muzik Theatre in Amsterdam. She also choreographed The Cunning Little Vixen for the New York Philharmonic. Armitage was awarded France's most prestigious award in 2009, Commandeur de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. This is her first collaboration with Cirque du Soleil.

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  • Rob Bollinger

    Acrobatic Performance Designer

    Rob Bollinger was a competitive trampolinist at the age of 9 and partnered with his father on the invention of the double mini trampoline as his family owned a trampoline club in Illinois, where he grew up. He studied Business at Indiana University on a scholarship as a competitive springboard diver. He won two Big Ten and two NCAA national diving championships and qualified for the 1980 and 1984 Olympics trials. He did not make the team on either occasion, and at first turned away from the world of competitive sports. After a brief period working in aeronautics and insurance, Rob found the pull of acrobatics too strong to resist, so he went to work in diving shows in theme parks, which led him around the world. On his return to the United States he put his talents as a diver and trampolinist to work in film and television as a professional stunt man, notably for Universal Studios. Rob joined Cirque du Soleil in 1993 during the creation of the first resident show Mystère as a coach and artist in the show’s original house troupe. In 1997 he joined "O", first as a coach, then as artistic coordinator and eventually he was appointed the production’s artistic director. He also added the artistic direction of Mystère to his responsibilities. KURIOS – Cabinet of curiosities is Rob’s third show as Acrobatic Performance Designer after ZAIA, Amaluna and Michael Jackson ONE.

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  • Fred Gérard

    Acrobatic Equipment and Rigging Designer

    In 1984, after some eye-opening encounters at Zingaro Circus (France), Fred left a career drilling for oil to tap into circus arts. Among the first to graduate from the National Centre for Circus Arts in Châlons-sur-Marne (France) as a flying trapeze porter, Fred was approached to become a trapeze artist in the Cirque du Soleil show Nouvelle Expérience. Forced to leave the stage following an injury, he became assistant to the show’s director and artistic director. He went on to assume the role of Tour Artistic Coordinator. After a short stint in Europe, he returned to Cirque du Soleil, taking his first steps in acrobatic equipment design for the shows Alegría and Mystère. Working as Head Rigger and training circus technicians at Cirque du Soleil International Headquarters in Montreal, he then took up these duties on several touring shows between 1997 and 2006. With the help of his circus friends, Fred co-founded the Nickel Chrome group in Martigues in the South of France. As a member of this organization, which supports circus projects, he acts as Tent Master/Head Rigger, Artistic Director, Designer or Trainer for circus projects and companies all over the world. Working with Nickel Chrome and Théâtre Europe, he was also involved in the creation and development of the Janvier dans les Étoiles festival in La Seyne-sur-Mer, France. This is the second time Fred Gérard has worked on a Cirque du Soleil show as Acrobatic Equipment and Rigging Designer, after OVO.

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  • Patricia Ruel

    Props Designer

    Patricia Ruel has contributed to the success of a myriad of plays, television shows and special events, both in Quebec and abroad. Her track record includes over 50 productions as Props Designer and a dozen as Set Designer. Patricia has received two Théâtre Denise-Pelletier awards for her sets for Révizor, directed by Reynald Robinson, in 2003, and Edmond Dantès, directed by Robert Bellefeuille, in 2004. In 2011, she received a Gémeau award in the “Best Set Design: all variety categories, magazines, public affairs, sports” category for the end-of-year special Bye Bye 2010, aired on SRC. She has worked with various theatre directors, including Robert Lepage, Dominic Champagne and Fernand Rainville. She has also worked on several projects for Cirque du Soleil, including KÀ, The Beatles LOVE and Viva ELVIS as Props Designer and Wintuk and Banana Shpeel as Set Designer.

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  • Eleni Uranis

    Makeup Designer

    Eleni Uranis joined Cirque du Soleil in 1989 as Assistant to Costume Designer Dominique Lemieux. She then worked on various shows, where she was responsible for materials research, fittings and artistic quality control. She then designed costumes for the show Pomp Duck and Circumstance, performed in Hamburg (Germany) from 1997 to 1999. In 2002, she worked alongside world-renowned designer Thierry Mugler to design the costumes for Zumanity. In 2004, Eleni Uranis’ career took a sharp turn when she joined the Cirque du Soleil make-up workshop, where she would see her ideas brought to life by the artists of Dralion. Between 2004 and 2006, Eleni Uranis assisted Make-up Designer Nathalie Gagné with several shows and, in 2005, she designed the make-up for Reflections in Blue, the show Cirque produced for the opening ceremonies of the XI FINA World Aquatic Championships. With KURIOS – Cabinet of curiosities, Eleni is designing the make-up for her seventh Cirque du Soleil production after Dralion, Wintuk, ZED, Banana Shpeel, Zarkana and Amaluna.

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Collaborators and Guest Creators

 
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