As my five-year-old daughter and I walked to our seats at Barclay’s Center on Wednesday, September 7 to see the Cirque du Soleil’s latest spectacle, Toruk – the First Flight, we felt as though we were transported to another world. Blue light blanketed the arena stage, which was transformed into a hilly landscape with an elevated structure at its core, accented by blinking fireflies pulsing to slow electronic music.
Directed by Michel Lemieux and Victor Pilon, Toruk is inspired by the James Cameron movie Avatar, and takes place on a faraway moon called Pandora. The initial mood upon entering the arena set the stage for an imaginative, multimedia display that included flying dragon and dinosaur puppets, visual projections and innovative stagecraft, accompanied by cinematic music, drumming and chanting.
However, although the surface of the show was dazzling, the signature acrobatics of the Cirque du Soleil performers played a secondary role. Yes, there were gravity-defying spins and dips from suspended ropes, handstands and flips, but performers were scattered throughout the arena, making it difficult to concentrate on any one area or feat.
Toruk takes place thousands of years before the events in the movie Avatar, before any humans arrived. … Continue reading..