Cirque de Soleil: Volta Captivates the Audience


This segment of the performance included a man on a tricycle as a woman standing on his shoulders did flips.

Nikoo Alizadeh, Staff Writer

Cirque de Soleil, known as one of the best circuses in the world, premiered its 41st production, “Volta”, on 20 Apr. 2017 in Montreal. Since then, the show has toured North America and was so successful that show times were extended in San Francisco. The San Jose tour ended on March 24; however their next set of shows will take place in San Diego from April 3 to May 5.

Volta is centered around extreme sports such as acrobatics, biking, roller skating, and dancing. The show was two hours and fifteen minutes long, with a twenty minutes intermission in the middle of the show. The show has a storyline, whose main character was Waz, a young man who seems to have lost hope in himself.

“The entire show is, in fact, this journey to self acceptance and being true to himself,” says Yannak Spierkel, the company manager for Volta.

Through reliving memories from his childhood and some encouragement from other characters, Waz is able to regain his confidence. The storyline was interesting to follow throughout the show, but it wasn’t the main attraction.

Like a traditional circus, the performance was in a humongous tent. When you first entered, there were many small stands were people could buy food, drinks, and merchandise. Similar to many other shows, the food was extremely expensive, with a small popcorn and drink costing a whopping 25 dollars. The stage was also much smaller than anticipated and the seats were not very comfortable. My seat was in the second row, which was right in front of the stage. Unfortunately, it was irritating that the bright lights were constantly shining into the audience. People that had seats in the middle had a much better view of the stage and didn’t have to strain their necks to look at the performers.

However, Volta is far from the average circus performance. The show was unique in the aspect that it didn’t have the typical tightrope act or lion tamer.  It began with the character Mr. Wow, a mime. He’s a comical character and although he is not involved in the main performance, he has small bits throughout the show. He went around making weird gestures at people and even brought a lady on stage to take some pictures with her. During the actual performance, there were acrobats and professionals bikers. There were gymnasts who did flips over large obstacles and trampolines as well as many roller skaters and acrobats who glided over the audience. There wasn’t a moment during the show were people weren’t on the edge of their seat, anticipating what would come next.

The most captivating character was a young woman who was doing acrobatic tricks while the only wire connected to her was wrapped around her hair. This show set the bar very high for other circuses by including unique acts with a storyline that the audience could follow.

Overall, the show is definitely worth watching because of the impressive performers. Seats are only a mild inconvenience and the performance itself makes up for it. The show caters to people who enjoy extreme sports as well as people who enjoy more calm acts.