CIRQUE MEI, the elite circus troupe will thrill the Sondheim audience with their amazing feats of agility, strength, and poise.
Direct from People's Republic of China, this top acrobatic group blends ancient artistry with breathtaking energy for a non-stop extravaganza of acrobatics, contortion tricks, juggling acts, and balancing feats.
The spectacular performance is a colorful and lively celebration of the Chinese circus arts, famous throughout the world. This remarkable company features 40 leading circus artists and acrobats from the northern Hebei Province who execute many of the popular Chinese circus routines, including hoops diving, lion dance, collective bicycle skills, flying meteors, foot juggling with umbrellas, and more.
Chinese acrobatics has a long and proud history going back some 4,000 years. It developed from people's everyday lives, using instruments used in daily life like tables, chairs, jars, plates and bowls. Wushu, which is traditional group gymnastics, and the Lion Dance come from folk sport and games. Like so much of folk lore, Chinese acrobatics is the art of working people and was not considered theater-worthy. That has changed as skillful performers amazed audiences and led to a resurgence of interest in the national arts in China.
The Lion Dance evolved from an old folk dance in China. In the dance, there are two types of lion, the large, played by two acrobats, and the small, portrayed by one. They perform traditional movements of lions like rolling and jumping and portray the lion's strength and agility as well as the playful side of the King of Beasts.
Hoop Diving developed from the "Swallow Dance" of some 2,000 years ago where the acrobats imitated the flying movement of swallows as they leapt through the rings. In Flying Meteors, the performer swings glass bowls that move like meteors in the sky. Using rope and two glass bowls filled with water, the performer does forward rolls and backward somersaults without spilling any water.
This spectacular performance is a colorful and lively celebration of the Chinese circus arts and a delight for the entire family.
Bring the whole family to experience the beauty, wonder, and excitement of Cirque Mei.