Writer/Director: Deborah Colker
Reviewer: John Roberts
Performed for the first time almost a decade ago, OVO,the 25thproduction for Canadian based Cirque du Soleil goes on out on its first ever UK tour following a record-breaking run at the Royal Albert Hall earlier in the year.
Created by Brazilian director and choreographer Deborah Colker, OVO– which translates as egg in Portuguese this silver anniversary show takes us deep into the depths of insect life and the journey the egg makes through this colourful, imaginative world of our critter friends.
In comparison to other Cirque du Soleil shows, OVO seems to lack the danger and wow factor that other productions have produced, this could be to focus more on the origins of the company – taking it back to its roots for this anniversary show, or that it was more difficult to find ways to incorporate the danger element into the storyline. Whatever the reason, one thing is for certain OVO is a production that has so much colour and character, its charm and exuberance more than makes up for its shortcomings.
Under the guidance of three larger than life clowning bugs; Mister Flippo – the eccentric older Buffoon bug, The foreigner – the foolish, haphazard Auguste fly and The Ladybug – a beautiful bug searching for her “Mr Right”, we are catapulted deep into insect life, where we encounter a number a visually beautiful bugs designed by Liz Vandal, displaying their acrobatic prowess in all their splendour.
Stand out performances come from a troupe of ants who balance and juggle fruit with their feet, the duet of dancing butterflies and their memorising silks routine, a crowd-pleasing and almost impossible to believe diablo routine is a courtesy given to us from the fireflies and the grasshoppers show their leaping prowess with a strong section around the set; which is beautifully realised thanks Gringo Cordia’s multi-levelled set, which hides numerous surprises and really conveys a scale befitting the insect kingdom.
Colker’s show, may not have the strongest storyline, in fact the story of the Egg almost disappears completely when the presentations of the various insects take place, but it is a visually impressive display, that is lifted substantially by Berna Ceppas’ stunning compositions which sample real insect noises and sounds which help to envelop the audience throughout. Éric Champoux’s lighting design brings out Vandal’s colourful creations but also helps instil a vivid and dark atmosphere to the underground antics of the insects.
Runs until 19 August 2018 | Image: Contributed