ore than six million Aussies have seen a Cirque du Soleil show over the past 17 years, and that number is set to be boosted even further by KOOZA.
The electrifying KOOZA combines two circus traditions — acrobatic performance and the art of clowning — to stunning effect.
There have been 10 Cirque du Soleil shows in Australia since 1999. A whopping 700,000 people saw Totem when it toured in 2014-15.
KOOZA could push that overall figure to seven million.
It features a selection of hand-picked acts that are guaranteed to thrill, including the Wheel Of Death, the High Wire, Balancing On Chairs and the Teeterboard. There are no safety nets.
“I’ve taken this show to Japan and Europe and the US and it is exhilarating because of the level of adrenaline,” says company manager Genevieve Deslandes.
“It is such a wild ride. I think Australian men might be surprised by this show.
“I can see them being really blown away by it.”
There is plenty of family fun too. The opening Charivari with the boisterous house troupe, the serene beauty of the Brush Farm House, Eastwood; today, September 10 and October 22, 3pm and 6pm, Hughenden Hotel, Woollahra; Septemberer 1 and September 2, 6.30pm, Eskbank House andnd Museum, Lithgow; September 17, 3pm and 6pm $ 20-30, blaxlandanddaughter.com Award-winning writer Wendy Blaxland brings life to a true story which happened on the site where Killara station stands today. Contortion, and the exceptional balance of the Hoops Manipulation are spellbinding.
Clowns such as The King, The Handyman and the Mad Dog are also integral to the success of KOOZA. Anyone in the audience could suddenly find themselves part of the action.
“Clowns can be a connection to the audience because we’re closer to them than many of the other acts,” Michael Jay Garner, who plays The Handyman, says.
“We tend to deal in universal emotions that are common to everyone — laughter, love, fear, anger and kindness.
“The shenanigans they (audience members) get into with us are what we call ‘gifts’.”
But it is the journey of The Innocent, guided by The Trickster, which provides the emotional heart to KOOZA.
The Trickster is charming and sophisticated, a genius who created the surreal world of KOOZA. The Innocent is a childlike loner who becomes enveloped in The Trickster’s powers.
“Every time I walk out of the KOOZA big top, I feel so inspired,” Deslandes says. KOOZA, Entertainment Quarter, Moore Park; August 25-November 6, $60-$295, cirquedusoleil.com/kooza Set in early co colonial Sydney, c convict William Geary (played by Andy Simpson) tries t to escape from b bushrangers alo alongside Matilda Fish (Brigid O’Sul O’Sullivan), who is determin determined to testify against him. With an acclaimed cast — watch out for gang member John Whiteman, the flying barber, a master with soap and a cutthroat razor — the play is full of daring escapes and adventures along Sydney’s North Shore.