After a twelve-year absence, Cirque du Soleil has announced its return to the Valley of the Sun with its live production Dralion. The trademark blue-and-yellow Grand Chapiteau, a state-of-the-art big top, will rise in the parking lot of Tempe Diablo Stadium for a limited engagement beginning Wednesday, November 13, 2002. The general public may purchase tickets for Dralion at 1-800-678-5440 or online at the Cirque du Soleil web site.
Since its world premiere in Montreal in April 1999, Dralion has been experienced by more than 2 million spectators in 21 cities across North America. The Los Angeles Times said of Dralion , "In Cirque du Soleil's winning Dralion , fanciful creatures and a bit of self-parody infuse the troupe's acts with new life entrancing as ever impeccable."
According to the Chinese calendar, 2002 is the year of the Horse. But for Cirque du Soleil, it is the year of Dralion. Suspended in time between the past and the future, Dralion is a celebration of life and the four elements that maintain the natural order: air, water, fire and earth. Fusing ancient Chinese acrobatic tradition with the avant-garde approach of Cirque du Soleil, Dralion is Cirque du Soleil at its purest: a dynamic performance that transcends the boundaries of the imagination and leads us into a dreamscape with a new and sparkling perspective.
Dralion features more than 55 artists from ten countries (Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, France, Ivory Coast, Russia, Ukraine, United Kingdom and the United States), including a house troupe of 37 Chinese acrobats. The multi-talented performers present a variety of high-caliber acts including teeterboard, ballet on lights, hoop diving, bamboo poles, juggling, single hand balancing, double trapeze, skipping ropes and more. All acts were specially created for Dralion. Clowns - without whom no circus is complete - appear throughout the show, adding more than a touch of madness.
The breathtaking futuristic set is an immense technological sculpture whose every component serves as an accessory to the acrobats throughout the show. One of these components, hanging close to the dome of the big top, is an aluminum structure made up of three rings, each of which has a particular function. One ring, called "the sun", serves as an acrobatic apparatus, another as a catwalk, while the third is used for technical purposes and houses an enormous lantern. The metal wall acts as backdrop and orchestra pit, in addition to being used by the artists during the performance.
The costumes, created exclusively for Dralion, are in four colors representing the elements: blue for air, green for water, red for fire and ochre for earth. The Dralion score is a fusion of music from around the world. The wide range of influences includes Hindu melodies and the sounds of instruments from Andalusia, Africa, Central Europe and the West.
Cirque du Soleil gratefully acknowledges American Electric Power as a corporate sponsor of the Cirque du Soleil 2002 North American Tours, and Bravo Network as official sponsor for the Dralion 2002 North American Tour.
2002 Performance Schedule
Wednesday, Nov. 13 and Thursday, Nov. 14 at 8 p.m.; Friday, Nov. 15 at 5 p.m. and 9 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 16 at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.; Sunday, Nov 17 at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m.
Regular performance schedule:
Tuesday and Wednesday evenings at 8 p.m.; Thursdays and Fridays at 5 p.m. and 9 p.m.; Saturdays at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.;
and Sundays at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. No performances on Mondays.
The general public may purchase tickets at 1-800-678-5440 or online at the Cirque du Soleil web site.
Prices range from $45.00 to $65.00 for adults and from $31.50 to $45.50 for children. For students (13 to 17 years) and senior citizens (65 plus), prices are from $40.50 to $58.50 weekdays only (Tuesday to Thursday and Friday at 5 p.m.)
Dralion VIP Package
The Dralion VIP Package includes one of the best seats in the house, refreshments and hors-d'oeuvres served in the Cirque-style ambiance of the Dralion VIP Suite, a special Dralion gift and a souvenir program. Dralion VIP Packages are $165.00 for adults and $115.00 for children (ages 2-12). Available at 1- 800-678-5440 or online at the Cirque du Soleil web site .
Purchase Dralion Merchandise
You can purchase the DVD, video and music in both cassette and DVD formats.