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Varekai

Deep within a forest, at the summit of a volcano, exists an extraordinary world - a world where something else is possible. A world called Varekai.

From the sky falls a solitary young man, and the story of Varekai begins. Parachuted into the shadows of a magical forest, a kaleidoscopic world populated by fantastical creatures, this young man sets off on an adventure both absurd and extraordinary. On this day at the edge of time, in this place of all possibilities, begins an inspired incantation to life rediscovered.

The word Varekai means "wherever" in the Romany language of the gypsies the universal wanderers. This production pays tribute to the nomadic soul, to the spirit and art of the circus tradition, and to the infinite passion of those whose quest takes them along the path that leads to Varekai.

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美国, 加拿大 的巡演

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Varekai - 创作人员

  • Guy Laliberté

    创办人

    Guy Laliberté 1959 年出生于加拿大魁北克市。他是一位手风琴师、高跷艺人和吞火魔术师,和同伴们组成了魁北克第一个国际知名的马戏团。大胆又爱幻想的 Guy Laliberté 慧眼识才,找到拜圣保罗狂欢节上极具才华的街头表演者,与他们一起在 1984 年创立了太阳剧团

    Guy Laliberté 是第一位将文化、艺术与杂技训练相结合的人,而这也成为太阳剧团最重要的特色。自 1984 年起,他带领他的创作团队创作了每场演出,将杂技表演提升到极高的艺术境界。

    太阳剧团以其表演阵容之强,活动范围之广,影响力之大,成为了一个国际大型马戏团。在 Guy Laliberté 带领下,太阳剧团的足迹遍布五大洲。

    2007 年 10 月,Guy Laliberté 成立了一滴水基金会,投身于人生的另一项伟大事业。该基金会的宗旨是让贫困地区民众获得安全饮用水。这个新的梦想源自于饮水权对个人乃至全球社区存亡重要性的认识以及太阳剧团自成立以来一直秉持的价值观:你给予生活什么,生活就回馈你什么。即使一个最微小的举动,也会产生差异。

    2009 年 9 月,Guy Laliberté 成为加拿大第一位私人太空探险家。他的使命是唤起公众对地球水资源短缺的关注。这场史无前例的宇宙演出活动的主题是“撼天动地为水源”(Moving Stars and Earth for Water),被誉为“富有诗意的社会使命”,旨在以艺术的形式赢得世人共鸣:这次网络直播特别节目持续了 120 分钟,各种艺术表演在五大洲 14 个城市(包括国际空间站)同时上演。

    重大荣誉及奖项
    2012 年,Guy Laliberté 入选美国博彩协会名人堂。2011 年,Guy Laliberté 入选加拿大企业名人堂。2010 年,Guy 在富有传奇色彩的好莱坞星光大道上留刻了属于自己的星形奖章。同年,魁北克政府再次授予 Guy 七星勋章,从“骑士”(6 年前授予)上升为“军官”级别。2008 年,Guy Laliberté 获拉瓦尔大学(魁北克)荣誉博士头衔。2007 年,Guy Laliberté 荣获安永年度企业家奖。这项大奖包含三个级别:魁北克、加拿大和国际。2004 年,Guy Laliberté 接受加拿大政府颁发的最高殊荣:加拿大勋章。 同年,他被时代周刊评选为全球 100 位最具影响力人物之一。2003 年,他被 Condé Nast 集团的绝不跟风计划选为创造者和革新者。2001 年,他被 Académie des Grands Montréalais 评为蒙特利尔荣誉市民。1997 年,Guy Laliberté 荣获魁北克政府颁发的最高荣誉魁北克勋章。克勋章。


    其他荣誉及奖项

    2009 年
    加拿大营销协会授予终身成就奖

    2002 年
    入选加拿大星光大道

    1998 年
    美国手工艺博物馆(现为纽约艺术和设计博物馆)授予远见奖

    1996 年
    在第 43 届 Gala du Commerce(魁北克)获新视野奖

    1988 年
    Gala Excellence 新闻(魁北克)年度风云人物

    1988 年
    《法国商务期刊》杂志(魁北克)年度企业家

     

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  • Dominic Champagne

    作者兼导演

    A multitalented and prolific playwright, director and Artistic Director of his own theatre company, Dominic Champagne has been a forceful presence on the Quebec cultural scene since graduating from the National Theatre School of Canada in 1987.

    In 1992, Champagne created waves among the public and his peers with his show Cabaret Neiges Noires, written in collaboration with his fellow artists at Théâtre il va sans dire. Inspired by Martin Luther King's famous "I Have a Dream" speech, the play was highly innovative in both its message and its medium. The script was at once cynical, poetic, dark and funny, while the festive and unrestrained staging brought together acting, song and music. Champagne's gamble paid off: he succeeded in taking a critical look at the era and in bringing new audiences into the theatre. The show has been performed more than 100 times since it was first created.

    Champagne adapted and directed Don Quichotte (Cervantes' Don Quixote) for a 1998 stage production that attracted record crowds to Montreal's Théâtre du Nouveau Monde, and in 2000 he set new attendance records with his staging of L'Odyssée (The Odyssey, by Homer). His other creations for the theatre include La Caverne, L'Asile, Lolita, La Cité Interdite and La Répétition.

    He has also worked in television as a writer for the series Les Grands Procès, and was involved in the creation and direction of many variety shows including Le Plaisir Croît Avec l'Usage, the opening ceremonies of the Jeux de la Francophonie, Tous Unis Contre le SIDA, Les Spectacles de la Fête Nationale and La Soirée des Masques.

    His more than 100 accomplishments for the stage, television and circus have earned him a host of awards and honors, including the Prix de la Critique for the text of La Répétition, two Gémeau awards for best direction for L'Odyssée and Don Quichotte, the Gémeau for best dramatic writing for Aurore and the Masque du Public for his adaptation of L'Odyssée.

    Champagne's work in theatre and television led to an invitation from Cirque du Soleil to direct Varekai in 2002. Champagne's next assignment for Cirque was to co-direct ZUMANITY with René Richard Cyr. Writing and directing LOVE has been both rewarding and enormously challenging for Champagne. "It was a privilege and a great honor to be asked to do this," he says.

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  • Andrew Watson

    Director of Creation

    After ten years of working on stage as an acrobat, Andrew Watson now works behind the scenes, as Director of Creation for Cirque du Soleil's new production, Zumanity. Previously, he played this role with Varekai, which premiered in the spring of 2002. This show marked a pivotal moment in the artistic career of a man who is no stranger to risk.

    In 1984, the year Cirque du Soleil was founded, he enrolled as a general artist in the Gerry Cottle Circus in London. He was 24 at the time and didn't have the gymnastic training of most acrobats. But that didn't stop him: he became a trapeze artist. In 1986, his duo performance at the Festival du Cirque de Demain, in Paris, earned him job offers from several well-known European circuses. He went on tour with the German circus troupe Roncalli, attracted by its blend of theatre and traditional circus elements.

    His Cirque de Demain performance was also noticed by Guy Caron, at the time artistic director of a youthful Cirque du Soleil. In 1987, drawn by Cirque's creativity and audacity, Andrew Watson joined the team of We Reinvent the Circus, the show that was to be the Quebec circus troupe's first major North American tour. Throughout his career as a Cirque du Soleil acrobat, Andrew Watson won several honours and awards, including the Clown d'argent at the Festival International du Cirque de Monte-Carlo, in 1990. He left the ring in 1990, and subsequently held the positions of director of casting and artist training, artistic coordinator and artistic director. From 1994 to 1999, he was involved mainly in the shows Saltimbanco, Alegría and Quidam.

    In 1999, he decided to go back to London to live and work. Joining the New Millennium Experience Company, he designed the aerial acts and trained the acrobatic artists for the New Millennium Dome Central Show, presented in London as part of the year-2000 festivities. In 2001, he came back to Montreal with his family in order to oversee the creation of Varekai.

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  • Stéphane Roy

    Set Designer

    A graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada, Stéphane Roy has worked as both a set designer and artistic director on over 100 productions in Montreal and abroad. While mainly active in theatre and dance, he has also worked in film, television, advertising and variety shows.

    Over the years Stéphane’s career has led to close working relationships with a number of directors and arts companies: He created the sets for several plays presented at Espace Go and the Théâtre du Nouveau Monde in Montreal and since 1990 he has designed sets for dance productions by such internationally-acclaimed dance troupes as La La La Human Steps and O Vertigo.

    Given that professional background, plus an architect father, a mother active in theatre and a unique social and artistic approach to performance space, it was perhaps inevitable that Stéphane would gravitate toward Cirque du Soleil, a relationship that began with the creation of Dralion, and continued with Varekai, Zumanity, KOOZA and now, Zarkana.

    Since 2011, Stéphane has been one of three artists in residence appointed by the Montreal Nature Museums group to create organic links between the city’s four natural science museums. He also designed The Warrior Emperor and China’s Terra Cotta Army exhibition at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.

    His achievements have earned him many awards and honors, including being named Revelation of the Year, All Categories Combined, by the Association Québécoise des Critiques de Théâtre in 1989. In 1992, the same association honored him with the award for best set design. His talent has also been recognized by the Conseil des Arts de la Communauté Urbaine de Montréal, the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television and the Académie Québécoise du Théâtre.

    "In the lyrical, fantastic world of Zarkana, the setting, an abandoned decrepit theatre, is a character in its own right,” says Stéphane Roy. “The walls breathe, move and sing. In terms of aesthetics, we are at the beginning of the last century, between 1910 and 1930, midway between Gaudí, Klimt and Art Nouveau. The organic shapes are a nod to the master French glassmaker and jeweler René Lalique."

    Stéphane Roy lives in Montreal.

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  • Eiko Ishioka

    Costume Designer

    As a visual artist whose career spans several fields, Eiko Ishioka has created some of the most remarkable works of our time. She is one of the rare artists honoured in the West with an Academy Award, a Cannes Film Festival award, a Grammy Award and a Tony nomination, after having won some of the most prestigious art direction and graphic design awards in her native Japan. In 1999, she designed the costumes for the film The Cell, starring Jennifer Lopez, as well as publishing the book Eiko on Stage, which focuses on her stage and screen work.

    Eiko Ishioka's talent was revealed to the North American public thanks to the Oscar-winning costumes she designed for Bram Stoker's Dracula, directed by Francis Ford Coppola. "Like all great artists in the world, Eiko understands what's going on in other cultures besides her own, and by immersing herself in them, she is able to create works that are unique blends. Her work transcends boundaries on many levels, since she refuses to stick to one particular medium or set convention," attests the director of Apocalypse Now.

    In fact, it was Coppola who invited Eiko Ishioka to her first Cirque du Soleil performance. Varekai marks her début in the world of the circus arts. As she explains, "After the publication of Eiko on Stage, I wanted to explore new horizons. This proposal came at a perfect time and I was seduced immediately since, as a spectator, I had already fallen under the spell of Cirque du Soleil." She adds that, "with Cirque du Soleil, I've discovered a new creative universe, which I embraced right from the start. Together, we're building a shared dream."

    Over the course of her career, Eiko Ishioka has left her mark in a variety of artistic fields, winning acclaim as an art director and graphic designer, production and costume designer, and museum exhibit designer, among other things. In 1983, she published a retrospective of her graphic design and art direction work entitled Eiko by Eiko. Ishioka was chosen as a keynote speaker for the 1998 International Design Conference in Aspen, Colorado, and is in high demand as a lecturer around the world. In 2001, she designed racing uniforms and outerwear for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, Utah. She also directed the music video for the single"Cocoon", from Björk's album Vespertine.

    Her long list of accolades garnered in the West includes the 1985 Cannes Film Festival Award for Artistic Contribution for her production design work on the Paul Schrader film Mishima, Tony nominations in 1988 for the sets and costumes of the play M. Butterfly, and a 1987 Grammy Award for the artwork on the Miles Davis album Tutu. Eiko Ishioka is a laureate of the New York Art Directors Club Hall of Fame, and her work is included in the permanent collections of museums around the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

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  • Violaine Corradi

    作曲及音乐总监

    Violaine 生於义大利的里雅斯特,四岁时移居蒙特利尔。她的父亲是一名作曲家及指挥家,其母为歌剧演唱家。为了继承家族传统,她接受了古典音乐的培训,包括唱歌、钢琴、单簧管及长笛。她七岁时加入儿童合唱团,并參加了 Bolshoi Opera、Milan Scala 及 Opéra du Québec 在蒙特利尔 Place des Arts 的演出。

    随後,Violaine 修读戏剧,并主力发展钢琴及唱歌。她的音乐造诣不断发展,融入不同的音乐风格,并从世界各地的音乐中获取灵感,从而形成其独有的风格。她以电子键盘开创出另类摇滚乐,现主力发展世界音乐,并运用於全球巡回演出的剧码《Cyberjam》。

    自 1999 年第一次为太阳剧团的《超越极限》(Dralion)作曲後,Violaine 继续为剧团的 IMAX 电影 Bears and Great North 原声大碟作曲、编曲及监制,并获得 2001 年巴黎的 Festival du Film de la Gode 大奖。之後,Violaine 继续为《梦幻人生》(Varekai)作曲。

    除了作曲之外,Violaine 还为音乐师试音并为太阳剧团监制音乐。Violaine 表示:“在杂技表演中,音乐设计师就好像杂耍表演者一样,被掉进空无一物的空间内,但同时,集体创作也为设计师提供了一个安全网。”

    Violaine 的作品充分反映出她汇集各方精髓及特色的能力。她曾为不同的展览及电影作曲。在 1993 至 1998年间,她为多首魁北克的著名诗歌谱写乐曲,并集结成专辑 Poésie/ musique,当中的九首作品还大受法语市场欢迎。Violaine 於 1996 年创作的个人专辑 Passage(包括 Illuminations),也收集了不同音乐人的作品,例如 Philip Glass、Jon Anderson 及 Andreas Vollenweider。

    自 1999 年起, Violaine 为 IMAX 电影 Bears and Great North 的原声大碟作曲、编曲及担任音乐总监,并获得 2001 年巴黎的 Festival du Film de la Gode 大奖。

    Violain e为《ZAIA》创作的音乐是继《超越极限》(Dralion)及《梦幻人生》(Varekai)後,第三次与太阳剧团合作的作品。Violaine 认为:“太阳剧团的创作人就好像杂耍人在空中表演一样,而我们的安全网便是集体创作。导演 Gilles Maheu 为《ZAIA》带來不少灵感,这对我來而言,同样是非常有用的。当我在进行音乐创作时,我经常以剧码人物的特徵作为主题创作灵感,因为每事每物均源於他们。”

    Violaine 在 1959 年於义大利的里雅斯特出生。

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  • Michael Montanaro

    Choreographer

    Michael Montanaro defines himself as a multidisciplinary artist and an artisan. He uses acting, music and video as his means of expression, but is best known both in Canada and abroad for his contributions to the world of dance. Between 1980 and 1985, with Groupe de la Place Royale, and from 1985 to 1996, with his troupe, Montanaro Danse, this choreographer's creations appeared on major Canadian stages and at leading cultural events in France, England, the United States and Singapore. Montanaro created 15 choreographic works in all for Groupe de la Place Royale when Jean-Pierre Perreault was at its helm, and as artistic director, dancer and composer for Montanaro Danse, created 12 shows that incorporated new technology into contemporary dance. During the 1990s, Montanaro also worked with the Opéra de Montréal, Montreal's Centaur Theatre, the National Film Board of Canada, and Discreet Logic, a company that specializes in computer-assisted animation.

    Michael Montanaro grew up in the French-speaking neighbourhood of a small New England town. He got his introduction to the stage by taking part in the community's folk music ensemble. After dance studies at Hartford Conservatory and a stint with the Boston Ballet, he set off for Quebec, in search of adventure. When he crossed the border in 1974, Montanaro had only seven suitcases, a television and high hopes of finding his place in the Montreal dance milieu. A few months later, Fernand Nault, then director of Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, took Montanaro under his wing. Montreal was to become Montanaro's home base.

    Since the mid-1990s, he has played a role in training the next generation of dancers at Université du Québec à Montréal, Concordia University, and the University of Calgary, and was choreographer in residence at Arizona State University's Institute for Studies in the Arts. In 1999, he became acting chair of the Contemporary Dance Department at Concordia University in Montreal. In 2001, the invitation from Cirque du Soleil for Varekai and the guarantee of a solid replacement as department head prompted him to take a sabbatical from his university career.

    Michael Montanaro wants his creations to reach the wider public. For this reason, his choreographies are light years away from the darkness and obscurity often associated with contemporary dance. "The circus is a festive art, without being trivial. Like a magnet, it pulls us away from our day-to-day problems for a moment, toward a universe where everything is possible. It's much more than just entertainment," says Montanaro.

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  • Bill Shannon

    Choreographer

    For more than ten years, Bill Shannon has been making his mark on the most prestigious alternative stages in the U.S. and around the world, and waking up the streets of New York and Chicago with his kinetic exploits. As well as being a renowned dancer and choreographer, this Brooklyn resident expresses himself through video, writing, drawing and installations. Bill regularly presents shows in the United States and at contemporary art and dance festivals in France, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Finland and Jordan. He has a bachelor's degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

    Bill Shannon is a self-styled interdisciplinary artist, but he is known in the club dance world as "the CrutchMaster." He has invented a unique technique for dancing on crutches—the Shannon Technique—that derives from his extensive experience in their use as a mobility aid. In fact, until Varekai, he was the only practitioner of this technique. "In my choreography, I aim to merge the Shannon Technique with freestyle street dancing, skateboarding and silent film poetics," he explains.

    Numerous awards and distinctions have recognized the avant-garde quality of Shannon's creations. Since 2000, he has received the Downtown Art/Colbert Foundation's Emerging Arts Award, as well as grants from the Foundation for Contemporary Performance Art and the Jerome Foundation, and has twice been supported by the Fund for US Artists at International Festivals.

    "My favourite place for experimentation and expression is the street. It allows for chance encounters and discoveries, both human and artistic, that couldn't be designed or planned in a million years," he says.

    Bill Shannon was born in 1970 and is from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

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  • Jaque Paquin

    Acrobatic Equipment and Rigging Designer

    There’s no formal training for a profession like Jaque Paquin’s. “To do it, you have to do it,” he says. Jaque studied art history (specializing in film) and electronics in school, and began his career in the arts working as a lighting technician at the age of 14. The following year, he opened a disco.

    He went on to work as a stage technician in theatre, a set painter in film, a grip in television and, finally, as a carpenter, team leader and project head in a set construction workshop for theatre and variety shows. "I've worked in nearly all of the trades plied by the people who build and operate my equipment," he says. “So I make an effort to facilitate the work of the technicians and the artists.”

    Jaque joined Cirque du Soleil in 1990 as head of the construction workshop, where he created aerial environments for such shows as Saltimbanco, Dralion, Varekai, Zumanity, KÀ and “O”. From 1991 to 1996, he was Technical Director for the North American tour of Saltimbanco, and he was the show’s Technical Director when it toured Europe and Japan. In 1995 and 1996, he was director of all installations for the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal and the FrancoFolies de Montréal.

    His imagination, artistic flair, and technical skill conjured up the fantastic boat in "O" – a piece of acrobatic equipment that brings together three techniques never before combined in the history of circus arts: the parallel bars, the Korean cradle and the flying trapeze.

    Whether working on the rigging for a show or as head of research and development for Cirque du Soleil's acrobatic equipment, Jaque is constantly on the lookout for ways to give a new look to a wide variety of circus arts. However, he says, “There’s never any compromise for safety. If an artistic vision can be achieved only by lowering the safety standards, then that element of the show will be dropped.”

    For CRISS ANGEL Believe™, Jaque Paquin has designed the equipment used in the illusions as well as the rigging for all of the scenic equipment (sound, lighting and set decorations). "We’ve developed unprecedented techniques, especially for the magic numbers," he says. “I like to say that this show contains some of my best inventions that I will never be able to talk about."

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  • Nol van Genuchten

    Lighting Designer

    Varekai is Nol van Genuchten's baptism of fire as lighting designer for a Cirque du Soleil show. It is also the fulfilment of a dream he has pursued since the age of 14, when he followed a neighbourhood theatre troupe on its tour of the Netherlands . "I am a child of the circus," he says jokingly. Nol van Genuchten has been a member of the Cirque du Soleil family for over twelve years, working in French, English, Dutch and German.

    Initially hired in 1994 as a lighting technician for the European tour of Saltimbanco, he subsequently joined the team as lighting co-ordinator, a position he held until the end of the tour. In 1996, he became the assistant to lighting designer Luc Lafortune. "Luc has been my mentor, my enabler, and my guru. It is to him that I owe the privilege of being a full participant in the Cirque du Soleil creative process." Nol van Genuchten collaborated on the creation of "O", La Nouba and Dralion . In 1999, he also had a hand in the renewal of the lighting concepts for Saltimbanco, Alegría and Quidam.

    Since 1999, Nol van Genuchten has designed the lighting for several special events organized by Cirque du Soleil. But he views his participation in Varekai as a precious gift. "It's a fascinating journey, in that the designers on the team come from a variety of backgrounds, including circus, theatre, visual arts, and music. But it also gives me the jitters at times, because I've had to discover the designer within me and make my own way."

    In order to stretch the possibilities of light, Nol van Genuchten strives to develop a close relationship with the artists. Their universe is one he already knows well, having studied acting and directing at Rijkshogeschool Maastricht, a prestigious theatre school in the Netherlands . After a year of training, he went back to his first love: lighting for live shows, notably those of Dutch humorist Paul Haenen.

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  • François Bergeron

    Sound Designer

    François Bergeron has been designing sound for Cirque du Soleil for more than 20 years. His creations (Nouvelle Expérience, Saltimbanco, Quidam, "O", La Nouba, Varekai and ZED) have toured the world, earning him multiple awards, including "Sound Designer of the Year,” for multimedia facilities at the Nike flagship store in New York and Cirque du Soleil’s Quidam. He was part of the creation team that won a THEA Award for “O” in Las Vegas.

    Since moving to Los Angeles in 1993, François has designed the sound for numerous variety shows, plays, musicals, theme parks and museum experiences. He took part in the creation of the Tokyo DisneySea theme park and Templo del Fuego (Universal Studios Port Aventura in Spain), an assignment that eventually led to the creation of his own company, Thinkwell Design & Production. François regularly works on projects throughout the US, Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

    "The soundscape can elicit powerful emotions within a Cirque show,” he says. “It can warn of impending danger, heighten tension or trigger laughter. It is impossible to escape its influence. My challenge as the Sound Designer is to create an atmosphere that conveys the intentions of the director, highlights the music and support the artists."

    “To create the sound environment of IRIS, we used tools and techniques that are poles apart,” he adds. “On the one hand, we designed and installed an advanced sound system. On the other, we took a purely organic approach to create some of the sound effects, using anything we could lay our hands on. It’s a mixture of advanced digital technology and old-school know-how. This is our tribute to the film artisans.”

    François Bergeron was born in Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec.

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  • Francis Laporte

    Images and Projections Designer

    Video Projections Designer Francis Laporte belongs to the new generation of creators who integrate digital video production and projection technology with more traditional live show forms. Since finishing university in 1992, he has worked on some 20 projects integrating video with the performing arts and theatre. One of his landmark professional assignments was the video design for a stage adaptation of Homer’s Odyssey directed by Dominic Champagne. He also does performances and installations, both alone and with other artists.

    As a projections designer, Francis Laporte can make good use of his diverse training. After studying communications and drama in college, he entered the theatre program at the Université du Québec, specializing in directing and stage design. His interest in images led him to video and multimedia production. “In drama, I looked at shows from the director’s point of view, whereas in video my approach was more theatrical. As a video designer for live shows, I’m finally working on bringing these media together,” he says.

    Francis Laporte also creates images for prestigious television broadcasts, such as the opening ceremonies of the Jeux de la Francophonie and the awards ceremony La Soirée des Jutra. In 2003-2004 he developed the visual concept for Eros Ramazzotti’s show (directed by Serge Denoncourt) and created the set design and visual concept for a performance of the Fantastic Symphony by Berlioz at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. He has also taken on the stage design for live concerts, including Quebec singer-cellist Jorane and singer-songwriter Stefie Shock.

    In 1999, Francis Laporte created the multimedia overture for Dralion. But Varekai was the first Cirque du Soleil show to fully incorporate this new artistic language. He further extended his approach in LOVE, Wintuk and now in CRISS ANGEL Believe. “At Cirque du Soleil, we have the great good fortune of working in a context where everything isn’t seen in terms of constraints; instead there’s a shared determination to see how far we can push the limits,” he notes.

    "Visually, my role is to give the dimension of perspective and depth to the world of CRISS ANGEL Believe," says Francis Laporte. “The projections help to give the various environments a ‘Gothic/Victorian' flavor by blending the mysterious with the grandiose, the bizarre and the sublime. The core intention of the projections is to play with the perceptions, creating a kind of playful dialogue between the real and the virtual."

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  • Cahal McCrystal

    Clown Act Creator

    Since 1996, Cahal McCrystal has devoted himself full time to creating and directing shows for various European theatre companies. He's one of the few British directors to focus almost exclusively on clown comedies. The clown acts he has created for Zumanity mark his second association with Cirque du Soleil: in 2002, he was part of the creative team that worked on Varekai.

    Cahal's plays, written for major British theatre companies such as Spymonkey, Peepolykus, and The Boosh comedy duo, have touched audiences worldwide and kept them rolling in the aisles.

    In 2000, his play Stiff, staged for Spymonkey, won the Total Theatre Award at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. It was also named best act at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, Colorado. The Mighty Boosh, launched at the 1998 Edinburgh Fringe Festival garnered the Perrier Award for Best New Comedy. Although critics have compared his characters to those of Mel Brooks, Monty Python and the Marx Brothers, Cahal's true goal is to create clowns with their own distinct personalities.

    "My job is to bring out the clown in actors and this clown emerges when you play up their personal foibles. This requires a great deal of humility and generosity on the part of the actors. But it's also highly gratifying. We admire people for their successes, but we love them for their weaknesses. That's why we adore clowns—they show us their very human and silly sides!"

    Before becoming a full-time director, this graduate of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama had a prolific 15-year acting career in theatre, film, television and radio. In the late '80s, Swiss writer, director and actor Philippe Byland invited Cahal to join his company. It was also in London that Cahal met his future mentor Philippe Gaulier, the dean of French theatre, who cast him in At the End of the Tunnel. One day, he would attend a show that truly blew him away—Cirque du Soleil's We Reinvent the Circus.

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  • André Simard

    特技表演设计师

    André Simard has been working with Cirque du Soleil since 1987. That year, he created a swinging trapeze act for the show Nouvelle Expérience, sparking a genuine revolution in high-flying aerial movement. Under his direction, the acrobatic feats performed by artists in motion somewhere between Earth and sky, either in a theatre or under a big top, achieved the fluidity of ballet. Between 1989 and 2000, 13 of the acts he created for Cirque du Soleil, the National Circus School and his own company of artists, Studio de création les gens d'R, garnered accolades in festivals attended by the finest circus artists from all over the world.

    The new circus arts are indebted to Simard for his creation of the discipline of aerial silk acrobatics in 1995. Another example of technological and choreographic innovation, stemming from his collaboration with acrobatic apparatus designer Jaque Paquin, was the Boat act in "O". As well, Simard has designed most of the aerial acts in the shows that Cirque performs around the world.

    For over 30 years, André Simard has succeeded in striking a harmonious balance between his three areas of expertise: the fine arts, elite sports, and the circus. In the early 1970s, he was a member of Canada's national gymnastics team while a student at the Institut des arts graphiques de Montréal. In addition, while preparing to compete in the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, he trained clowns and other public entertainers at the Centre Immaculée-Conception in Montréal, a forerunner of the National Circus School. In his own words, he is "constantly trying to meld the rules of biomechanics, as applied to athletic training, with the evocative power of the performing arts." This approach has also infused his teaching at the National Circus School, as well as at the Centre national des arts du cirque de Châlons-sur-Marne and the École nationale de Cirque de Rosny-sous-Bois, both in France.

    In 1995 he founded the Studio de création les gens d'R in Montréal, an artistic endeavor that affords him the opportunity to push the envelope of emotional expression through aerial movement. In 2001 this troupe gave the world premiere performance of Échos in Venice. The show was commissioned by the organizers of that city's celebrated Biennale arts festival.

    "For CRISS ANGEL Believe, I’ve come up with a way for the dervish characters to spin by hiding ropes inside their costumes," he says. "I've also introduced acrobatic elements into the stilt walkers’ dance numbers, and I’ve devised a motorized acrobatic mechanism for the character of Kayala: When she emerges from her flower to do her hoop routine, she grabs hold of the petals, which in reality are made out of transparent flexible PVC tubes built into her costume."

    André Simard was born in 1945 in Montreal.

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  • Nathalie Gagné

    化妆设计师

    化妆设计师 Nathalie Gagné 从小就对化妆著迷,并深信化妆对演员表演的影响。Nathalie 在加拿大魁北克省的 Cégep de Saint-Hyacinthe 攻读戏剧制作专业,其後成为巴黎著名的化妆学校 École Christian Chauveau 蒙特利尔分校的首届毕业生。

    Nathalie 在加入太阳剧团之前,曾在一些剧团、电影及电视机构工作。她曾两度获得 Gémeau 奖项(所有类别)的最佳化妆类别提名。这项荣誉是由加拿大电影及电视学院(Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television)所颁授。

    Nathalie 说:“化妆是表演角色灵魂的反映,它犹如魔杖一样,能挥走一切被掩盖的东西。”自 1995 年起,Nathalie 为太阳剧团设计超过200多款不同类型的化妆,而最终设计都是从 2,000 多个草图中精选出來的。

    由於太阳剧团的表演者均需要自行化妆,Nathalie 会邀请他们一同參与台上的化妆创作。Nathalie 说:“由於杂技表演者有别于一般演员,他们不习惯进一步了解自己的脸孔,我其中一个工作目标就是教晓他们了解自己的脸孔,帮助他们找出自己脸上的‘引力纹理’(lines of force),以建立他们的个人特质。”

    Nathalie 同时还负责确保所有妆容都富有她的特色与及完整性。由於表演者都需要自行化妆,因此化妆技巧工作坊成为太阳剧团为表演者提供的基本训练的一环。Nathalie 会先教会表演者如何自行化妆,然後为他们每个人写下应用步骤。

    Nathalie 在《神秘境界》(Mystère)、《飞跃之旅》(Alegría) 及《藝界人生》(Saltimbanco)中运用了全新的化妆概念,这促使她与导演 Franco Dragone 及服装设计师 Dominique Lemieux 的密切合作。继《奇幻之旅》(Quidam)、《“O”》、《梦幻嘉年华》(La Nouba)、《Varekai》、《人类动物园》(ZUMANITY)、《KÀ》、《欢宴人生》(Corteo)、《虚拟幻境》(DELIRIUM) 和 《LOVE》後, 《MACAU》将成为她与太阳剧团的第十个制作。

    Nathalie 说:“我透过多姿多彩的化妆设计,刻画了《ZAIA》中不同角色的人性特徵。同时,我还希望塑造出几类具有‘家族’特徵相貌的妆容,以突显不同的族群。由於部分表演者担领多个角色及需要迅速变换扮相,为他们变换妆容实在是一个挑战。因此,我运用了许多自然色调的面谱,让表演者更容易添加或抹去相关化妆,以满足不同的需求。”

    Nathalie 於 1963 年生於魁北克省的 Trois-Pistoles。

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