Issue #166: NOV 2017

Welcome to the latest edition of Fascination, the Unofficial Cirque du Soleil Newsletter. There’s a lot going on this month, so let’s get started…

LUNA PETUNIA TOYS NOW AVAILABLE

File this in the “whoops, I forgot about this” department, but last month, toys based on Cirque du Soleil and Saban Entertainment’s Luna Petunia (now streaming its second season on NETFLIX in North America) are now available!

A search on Target.com brings up 10 items…

• Luna Beanie Plush — $7.99
• 14″ Talking Luna Doll — $24.99
• Bibi Bubbles Beanie Plush — $7.99
• Sammy Stretch Beanie Plush — $7.99
• Karoo Beanie Plush — $7.99
• 5 Pack of Figures — $9.99
• Amazia Garden Playset — $12.99
• Fabulosa Cafe Playset — $12.99
• Crystal Castle Stables Playset — $12.99
• Amazia Necklace — $9.99

Check them out individually here:
https://www.target.com/s?searchTerm=Luna+Petunia

Additionally, NETFLIX announced that Season 3 of the animated show will begin streaming on the service Friday, November 17th!

SÉRIE HOMMAGE #4 – LES COLOCS!

On October 18, 2017, 45 DEGREES announced their fourth opus in the Hommage Series at the Amphithéâtre Cogeco in Trois-Rivières, QC – a show that will play tribute to one of the most important groups of the 1990’s in Quebec… LES COLOCS!

Les Colocs (The Room-mates) were a rock music group from Montreal. Founded in 1990 and fronted by Dédé Fortin, Les Colocs gave Québécois songs coloured with humanity, simplicity and social conscience (especially regarding poverty). They marked the history of Quebec music with their sound, infused with brass sounds, first very wild and festive, later more mellow, as well as more inspired by swing, country, blues and African music. This new direction inspired a collaboration with the Senegal-born Diouf brothers for the album Dehors novembre (1998).

The group promoted tolerance and had a multicultural line up. For example, Mike Sawatzky is a Cree from Saskatchewan, André Vanderbiest is from Belgium, and Patrick Esposito Di Napoli was from Northern Catalonia. Dédé Fortin (as well as members such as Serge Robert, later to be known as Mononc’ Serge) was a passionate Quebec sovereigntist. The band played an important role in the 1995 Quebec referendum via partisan shows.[citation needed] They were part of the resurgence of political songwriting in Quebec, after a drought in the 1980s and part of the 1990s. They were past contenders in the music band contest L’Empire des futures stars.

The festive nature of many of their songs contrasts with the deaths of two of their players. In 1994 Patrick Esposito Di Napoli died of AIDS. The band effectively came to an end in 2000 after frontman Fortin took his own life. They are considered to hold a major place in the history and evolution of the music of Quebec and have many music fans.

AND MUCH MORE

BLUE MAN GROUP CELEBRATES 20 YEARS IN CHICAGO

In the early ’90s few people had ever heard of the Blue Man Group, much less seen their live shows. Now, they’re known all over the world and they just celebrated two decades in Chicago. Their exact Chicago anniversary was Thursday, October 12, and they celebrated with a special birthday show at 8:00pm filled with surprises. Blue Man Group was purchased this summer by Cirque Du Soleil, and Dean said their combined creativity and talent may mean we ain’t seen nothing yet.

TORUK-THE FIRST FLIGHT HEADED TO DUBAI

In recent weeks, Dubai’s performing theatre landscape changed dramatically following the opening of La Perle. The spectacular show is a 90-minute whirlwind of circus-esque acrobatics, stunning visuals and 2.5 million litres of water being used to great effect throughout. And, the show just so happens to be directed by Franco Dragone, formerly of Cirque du Soleil. Now, the new Cirque du Soleil show is coming to town for a two-week run in January as part of a global tour. The new show is inspired by James Cameron’s record-shattering movie Avatar. Toruk – The First Flight, set in the fictional world of Pandora, is described as a “riveting fusion of cutting-edge visuals, puppetry and stagecraft buoyed by a soaring cinematic score”. The immersive experience, which will be narrated by one of the chatracters, depicts a tale set thousands of years before the events of the Avatar film, with a natural catastrophe threatening to destroy many sacred elements of the Na’vi’s world. The show will be presented at Dubai World Trade Centre from Thursday January 4 to Wednesday January 17. Tickets will be available on pre-sale for pre-registered customers and Cirque Club members on Tuesday October 17 at 11am – general sale will start on Friday October 20 at 11am. Prices start from AED295, and range up to AED2,495. Tickets are available from www.tixbox.com.

AMERICAN DREAM MIAMI??

Triple Five Group, developer of the proposed $4 billion American Dream Miami “mega center” in Northwest Miami-Dade, hopes to get its entitlements squared away by the end of this year in order to complete the project in 2023, says Miguel Diaz de la Portilla, a land-use attorney representing the project. […] In addition to a projected 450 retailers, restaurants and services, entertainment options announced so far include the world’s tallest indoor ski park, a skating rink, indoor water park, aquarium, submarine ride, gardens, a permanent Cirque du Soleil installation, a multi-screen luxury theater complex, an arts center for live performances and more. Triple Five Group – a shopping mall owner and operator, hotel operator and real estate company based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada – is the developer of West Edmonton Mall in Canada, Mall of America in Minnesota and the upcoming American Dream Meadowlands in the Greater New York area, scheduled to open in about 18 months. “We hope to open American Dream Miami in 2023,” Mr. Gorlow says, “contingent upon freeway interchanges opening at the same time as our doors open.” (You can read more about this project here: https://goo.gl/7Qef54).

LAS VEGAS RECORDS?

From the what-are-they-doing-now department comes the followingnote from KNPR, Nevada Public Radio: Jazz music might be a staple in places like New Orleans and Monterey, but it’s taken root in Las Vegas as well. Uli Geissendoerfer has played a big role in that. Originally from Munich, Germany, Geissendoerfer is a pianist, composer, and educator. He moved to Las Vegas in 2009, where he was the conductor, pianist, and bandleader for the short-lived Cirque du Soleil production “Viva Elvis.” His next assignment was resurrecting the Latin Jazz Ensemble at UNLV, where he still resides, as well as musical directing at the Dispensary Lounge. Clearly, jazz is in his heart. Now, Geissendoerfer is starting a record label called Vegas Records. It will focus on new music by local players and reissue older albums by veteran Vegas musicians. We wish him luck!

IN THE ISSUE

In features this month we’ve got a fantastic set of fan reviews for ZUMANITY, LUZIA, TORUK and CRYSTAL. (And speaking of Crystal, you’ll find most of the Crystal-related posts this month under one banner – “SPECTACLE – CRYSTAL IN THE PRESSE” so don’t forget to look for them if you’re interested in Cirque’s newest show… on ICE!) We also have four great fan-reviews of Zumanity, Luzia, Toruk, and Crystal within, continue our look back at classic show critiques with 1993’s reviews of Saltimbanco, and continue our three-part series on JOYA, Cirque du Soleil’s jewel in the Riviera Maya, with a look at the dinner portion of the production.

And plenty more!

Okay, so let’s go!

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