Sunday, May 24, 2009

What is Your Favorite Cirque du Soleil Show?

I get this question again and again, especially at my YouTube channel CirqueDuSoleilGuru, which is focusing on Cirque du Soleil almost exclusively. Simple question, isn't it? Or is it?

What is your answer to this question? Do you have favorite show? Have you seen more than one Cirque du Soleil show to be able to pick a favorite? Have you seen a Cirque du Soleil show at all or do you have no idea what I am talking about? If the latter is the case, go and check out my YouTube channel and also my Cirque du Soleil Primer Article.cirquefavshow2-710

I for my part cannot give a simple answer to this question. Which show I like the most, really depends  on the mood I am in.  To at least narrow down the list of 20+ shows to a manageable number, here are my general favorites:  "KA", playing at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, "O" at the Bellagio, also in Las Vegas; and the touring show "Varekai". I also like "Zumanity" at the New York, New York in Las Vegas a lot, so make it FOUR favorites, all right?!

  • "KA" is the EPIC show
  • "O" is the BEAUTYFUL show
  • "Zumanity" is the "FRIVOL" show
  • "Varekai" is FUNNY and has GREAT acts in it

If I would have to make a choice, because somebody puts a gun on my head or something like that, I'd pick "KA".

I have seen each of the shows above multiple times. The three Vegas Shows, twice each (life) and Varekai on DVD multiple times, but unfortunately never live yet. Varekai are at the wrong place on this planet at the moment.

I got a late start with Cirque in 2006 when they had left the country already. I'd like to see Varekai live though and hope that I will get a chance one day.

I have not seen "Wintuk", "Believe", "Zaia" or "Zed" so they might be contestants still hehe. I also have not seen the new show "OVO" yet, but from what I have heard is the show unlikely to be a contestant.

Learn more about:

KA Full Show Video(s) Buy Tickets
"O" 22 min Video Buy Tickets
Zumanity video 1, video 2, video 3, video 4 Buy Tickets
Varekai Video 1, Video 2 Check for Tickets

Note: Zumanity is the only Cirque du Soleil show where you have to be an adult (18+) to be able to watch the show, because of its sexual content.

So, now it's your turn? What is your favorite? Leave a comment below and tell me! Thanks.

Cirque du Soleil Then and Now 1984-2009 from Carsten Cumbrowski on Vimeo.

Ovo Update! I took the 2004 "Then and Now" video from Cirque du Soleil's Midnight Sun, which covered 11 Cirque du Soleil shows and extended it to cover the missing 10! shows as well (12 actually, if you include the mentioning of "Le Grand Tour" and "Fascination).

This extended introduction to the world of Cirque du Soleil covers the following shows:
Le Grand Tour, La Magie Continue, Cirque Reinvente, Nouvelle Experience, Fascination, Saltimbanco, Alegria, Mystere, "O", Dralion, Quidam, Varekai, Zumanity, KA, Love, Corteo, Delirium, Kooza, Wintuk, Zaia, Zed, Believe and Ovo.

You can download this video in AVI format at

For more information about Cirque du Soleil and their productions, visit


Carsten aka Roy/SAC

Friday, May 22, 2009

Microsoft Internet Explorer Search Providers Import and Export

Microsoft Internet Explorer 7 and 8 and also Mozilla Fire Fox come with a feature called "Custom Search Providers" or Search Scopes. It allows you to add web sites and search engines to your search box to search them directly, if you need to. For example could you add search to your search providers and search the site directly from your search box, if you are looking for a book, CD or DVD and use as primary online shop for this kind of purchases.


You can get a selection of custom search providers at this Microsoft web site. There you can find a number of options for popular web sites and other search engines. Also available there is the option to create your own custom search provider for your favorite web site. This is possible, as long as the site provides a site search option and passes the search parameters, such as the search term in the URL.

If you have a web site yourself and want to offer your visitors the option to add your site search to their web browser, then you can do that as well. I did this for my small project, a MS SQL Server resources meta-search engine based on Google Custom Search Engine. See the link at the bottom of the homepage that reads "Widgets and Gadgets". One of the options there is to add the search to your web browser.

The search providers page for Internet Explorer on the Microsoft web site.


All nice and good and I made myself good use of this feature. I have by now probably 20+ custom search providers added to my search box. Some via the Microsoft web site, others custom or via the "add" option at a web site directly. There is unfortunately no easy way to copy your search providers to another computer or to back it up and re-install, if you do a re-install of your current system.

The search providers (or search scopes) are stored by Microsoft in the Windows System Registry. You can find your current search scopes and export them via the system tool RegEdit.exe to a file at

HKEY_Current_User\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes

For each search provider exists a sub-key, in case that you only want to export specific search providers and not all of them. You can then take the exported file (with the extension .REG), copy it to the other machine and double click on it. You should be prompted to acknowledge that you want to import the file into the system registry. Do that and your search provider settings will be imported.

Here is a simple BATCH script to export and import your search provider settings.

SearchScope.bat Code

Download the source code for SearchScope.bat here (you need to remove the additional .txt extension of the file when you save the file to your local hard disk).

   1:  @echo off
   2:  CLS
   3:  if "%1"=="" (CALL :SELOPT) ELSE SET OPT=%1 
   4:  if "%2"=="" Call :GETFP   
   6:  IF %OPT%==IMPORT Call :DoImport
   7:  IF %OPT%==EXPORT Call :DoExport
   8:  Echo Finished!
   9:  Echo.
  10:  pause
  11:  GOTO :EOF
  13:  :SELOPT
  14:  echo Microsoft Custom Search Provider Import/Export Tool
  15:  echo by Carsten Cumbrowski aka Roy/SaC at
  16:  echo.
  17:  SET /p OTmp=Enter (I) to Import, (E) to Export or (A) to Abort: 
  18:  IF "%OTmp%"=="I" SET OPT=IMPORT&SET OK=1
  19:  IF "%OTmp%"=="i" SET OPT=IMPORT&SET OK=1
  20:  IF "%OTmp%"=="E" SET OPT=EXPORT&SET OK=1
  21:  IF "%OTmp%"=="e" SET OPT=EXPORT&SET OK=1
  22:  If NOT "%OK%"=="1" EXIT
  23:  GOTO :EOF
  25:  :GETFP
  26:  echo.
  27:  echo Please Specify the name and path for the file to %OPT% 
  28:  Echo Enter "a' to abort.
  29:  echo. 
  30:  SET /P FNAME=File Name: 
  31:  if %OPT%==IMPORT (
  32:    IF "%FNAME%"=="" EXIT
  33:    IF NOT EXIST "%FNAME%" Call :GETFP
  34:  )
  35:  GOTO :EOF
  37:  :DoImport
  38:  REG Import %FNAME%>NUL 2>&1
  39:  Echo Search Scopes Imported
  40:  Goto :EOF
  42:  :DoExport
  43:  REG Export "HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes" %FNAME%>Nul 2>&1
  44:  Echo Search Scopes Exported to %FNAME%
  45:  GOTO :EOF

Here is a more complex example script. It reads the settings from the HKEY_USER branch rather than the HKEY_CURRENT_USER one. The script looks up the SID for the current user and exports the registry settings, replacing the SID with a place holder to be substituted when imported again elsewhere.

This was more of a "proof of concept", since you do not have to go through all this length as the script above illustrates. I got the "inspiration" from the blog post "Working with Registry Keys in a Batch File" by "rhyous" at the LandDesk User Community.

However, this batch could be modified to export the settings from other users on the same machine. It was not easy to accomplish and very tricky to do. Just for a test, look at the code and tell honestly, if you understand every statement used there. :)

The only thing you would have to do, is replacing %%USERPROFILE%% with the path to the users home directory (e.G. "C:\Documents and Settings\UserName"

SearchScopesImportExport.bat Code

Download the source code for SearchScopesImportExport.bat here (you need to remove the additional .txt extension of the file when you save the file to your local hard disk).

   1:  @Echo off
   2:  cls
   5:  if "%*"=="" Goto :ShowUsage
   6:  if "%~2"=="" Goto :ShowUsage
   8:  SET RootKey="HKLM\software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList"
   9:  Set Val=ProfileImagePath
  11:  Call SET CurProf=%%USERPROFILE%%
  12:  SET CurSID=""
  14:  Echo Determining Current User's SID ...
  15:  Call :GETSID %RootKey%
  16:  Echo The current users SID is %CurSID%
  17:  Call Set RegTmp=%Temp%\%CurSID%_SearchScopes.reg
  19:  IF "%1"=="export" Call :ExportScopes "%~2"
  20:  IF "%1"=="import" Call :ImportScopes "%~2"
  22:  Echo.
  23:  echo Done Processing
  24:  echo.
  25:  pause
  26:  echo.
  27:  Goto :EOF
  30:  :GETSID
  31:  FOR /F "tokens=7* delims=\" %%i IN ('REG QUERY "%~1"') DO (
  32:    FOR /F "tokens=2*" %%a in ('REG QUERY "%~1\%%~i" /v %Val% ^|FINDSTR %Val%') DO (
  33:       CALL SET ldclientdir=%%b
  34:       if "%CurProf%"=="!ldclientdir!" (
  35:         Set CurSID=%%~i
  36:       )
  37:    )
  38:  )
  39:  GOTO :EOF
  41:  :ExportScopes
  42:  echo Exporting Search Scope Settings ...
  43:  REG Export "HKU\%CurSID%\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes" %RegTmp%>Nul 2>&1
  44:  Echo Replacing SID with place-holder CURRENTUSERSID ...
  45:  Call :SandR %RegTmp% "%~1" %%CurSID%% CURRENTUSERSID
  46:  goto :eof
  48:  :SandR
  49:  ::1 = input file
  50:  ::2 = output file
  51:  ::3 = search string
  52:  ::4 = replacement value
  53:  if EXIST "%~2" DEL /Q "%~2"
  54:  for /f "tokens=1,* delims=]" %%a in ('"type "%~1"|find /n /v """') do (
  55:     CALL SET _result=%%b
  56:     if NOT "%%b"=="" (
  57:       CALL SET _fchar=%%_result:~0,1%%
  58:       if "!_fchar!"=="[" (
  59:         set "line=%%b"
  60:         if defined line (
  61:            call set "line=echo.%%line:%3=%4%%"
  62:            for /f "delims=" %%X in ('"echo."%%line%%""') do %%~X>>"%~2"
  63:         )   ELSE echo.>>"%~2"
  64:       ) else (
  65:           echo %%b>>"%~2"
  66:       )
  67:     ) else (
  68:         echo.>>"%~2"
  69:     )
  70:  )
  71:  goto :eof
  73:  :ImportScopes
  74:  if NOT EXIST "%~1" GOTO :ShowUsage
  75:  echo Preparing Registry Data for Import ...
  76:  echo Replacing place-holder CURRENTUSERSID with SID ...
  77:  if EXIST %RegTmp% Del %RegTmp%
  78:  Call :SandR "%~1" %RegTmp% CURRENTUSERSID %%CurSID%%
  79:  Echo Importing Search Scopes ...
  80:  if EXIST %RegTmp% REG Import %RegTmp%>NUL 2>&1
  81:  goto :eof
  84:  :ShowUsage
  85:  cls
  86:  echo.
  87:  echo USAGE
  88:  echo   Script.bat import^|export IMPORTFILE.REG^|OUTPUTFILE.REG
  89:  echo.
  90:  echo Example Export of current Search Scopes to a file 
  91:  echo with the name MySearchScopes to the local directory C:\Data
  92:  echo.
  93:  echo   Script.bat export c:\Data\MySearchScopes.reg
  94:  echo.
  95:  Echo Example Import of Search Scopes from file generated via this script
  96:  Echo.
  97:  Echo  script.bat import c:\import\MySearchScopes.reg
  98:  echo.
  99:  pause
 100:  echo.

That's it. I hope that you will find this little tool and information useful.


Carsten aka Roy/SAC

Monday, May 18, 2009

In Case You Forgot Adobe Photoshop at Home, don’t worry!

In the case that you forgot Adobe Photoshop at home and need to make some last minute tweaks of some nice and cool graphics for your blog or MySpace page, while at a friends house, who only has MS Paint installed on his Computer, then you don’t have to decide between no image or crappy MS Paint tweaked image anymore.

pixlr-logo-trans There is now a nice third option available. All that your friend needs is a web browser and an Internet connection… and who doesn’t have this nowadays. Finding a home with black and white television is probably easier than one with a computer without Internet, right?

Anyhow. There have been in the past already multiple attempts to provide a practical photo and image editor on the World Wide Web. Yeah, you could tweak photographs a little bit, remove some red eyes, flip the image, crop it and adjust the colors and contrast or brightness, but that was about it. Pixlr has something for that as well, called Photo Express, where you can do some last minute tweaks to a photo before you put it up on Flickr or Photobucket.

But if you had to do a little bit more tweaking to an image, you still required a desktop application installed on your computer. Pixlr provides a neat alternative to that. Their image editor is more than just a nice toy where you can draw squares and lines like in MS Paint. The Pixlr image editor supports Layers and has some features like its big cousins, the Adobe Photoshop’s and alike. The interface also matches closely the look and feel of Photoshop, which will make designers who live and die with PS, feel like home instantly.

pixlr-startI actually felt so much at home that I got stuck when I tried to use the right click context menu or keyboard short-cuts that I am used to. The editor is Flash based and not Ajax like Google Docs and thus not supports the right mouse button (I wonder how this works on a Macintosh :) ).

The first thing you do when you go to the editor on the web is to select if you want to start a new image, load a picture from your computer or directly from a web site (e.g. Flickr). Supported are the standard formats JPEG, PNG and GIF.

I can only suggest to jump right into it and play around with all the features available yourself. That’s what I did and it worked out pretty well. If you don’t think that it feels right or could work for you, you just leave and never come back. That’s the beauty of a web based (and free) application. There is nothing to uninstall or something like that, because you never installed anything to begin with.

Here is a screen shot of my experiments with the editor.


Here is a screen shot of the light weight Photo Express application for last minute photo tweaks. Notice the photograph? It’s the only photograph with that many SAC members in it. It was taken at the BDN Party 3 in Berlin, Germany (where I won the “Fast ANSI” graphics compo and a T-Shirt as a prize hehe).


A quick note for web masters and web developers. Pixlr provides a web API that you can easily integrate the image editor into your own web application. The API has some nice features that let you control, if the user can save the image on his computer or not, if he can change the title, or if you specify it for the user, the source (e.g. an image template that you automatically load or just the image that the user uploaded on your web site and wants to make some tweaks to it, without doing it on his own computer and re-upload the modified image again. The possible implementations are probably somewhat limited, but in those few cases where it makes sense, having the option to provide a pretty good editor versus none or just a crappy one comes in very handy.

So go and check it out. It’s free, no trial, no premium versus basic free features or stuff like that (at least I didn’t see anything like that, when I checked out their web site and products).


Carsten aka Roy/SAC

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Cirque du Soleil - Historic Time-Line 1984 to Present

This article is part of my Cirque du Soleil Primer Article Series.


stilt walker 5-17-2009 19-19-41 "Those who are able to walk on stilts can roam the earth unstopped by mountains or rivers. They are able to imagine flying and therefore to reach the Isles of the Immortals."

P'ao-Pou Tseu

In the early eighties, a group of young street performers pooled their talent and dreams and founded the "Club des Talons Hauts" or "High-Heels Club", aptly named because most of them were stilt-walkers. The Club also featured fire eaters, jugglers and other buskers. At that time, Quebec did not have a circus tradition as did several European countries.


So the Club members decided to organize a festival, where street performers could come together to exchange ideas and techniques. They called it the "Fête Foraine de Baie St-Paul" (the Baie Saint-Paul Fair). That was all a few visionaries needed to hatch the idea of bringing all this talent together under one roof, or - why not? - a big top! Cirque du Soleil was born.


Cirque du Soleil – Historic Time-line 1984 - Present

The story begins in 1982, in Baie-Saint-Paul, Quebec. In this haven of creativity whose rural charm attracts artists, art collectors and tourists alike, a group of young street performers mix with the crowd, walking on stilts, juggling and eating fire. Inspired by the spectators' obvious delight, the performers hatch the idea of organizing an entertainers' festival-the precursor of what is to become Cirque du Soleil.




Cirque du Soleil is born with the assistance of the Quebec government, as part of the celebrations surrounding the 450th anniversary of Jacques Cartier's arrival in Canada. Cirque is based on a totally new concept: a striking, dramatic mix of the circus arts and street entertainment, featuring wild, outrageous costumes, staged under magical lighting and set to original music. With not a single animal in the ring, Cirque's difference is clear from the very start. The show debuts in the small Quebec town of Gaspé, and is then performed in ten other cities throughout the province. The first blue-and-yellow big top seats 800.



After performing in Montreal, Sherbrooke and Quebec City, Cirque du Soleil leaves its home province for the first time to take its show to neighbouring Ontario. It performs in Ottawa, Toronto and Niagara Falls.




Cirque du Soleil takes La Magie Continue to eight other cities across Canada, including Vancouver, where it puts on several performances at the Children's Festival and Expo 86. Cirque makes its name on the international stage too, as acts are awarded top honours at competitions and festivals around the world. As interest in Cirque grows, so does the big top, which now has room for 1,500 spectators.



clip_image003Cirque du Soleil visits its American neighbours for the first time. Having triumphed in five cities in Quebec, We Reinvent the Circus is performed at the Los Angeles Festival, and then moves on to San Diego and Santa Monica. Exhilarated by the Californian public's response, Cirque du Soleil is an overnight success.



We Reinvent the Circus continues its North American tour, after a brief appearance at the Calgary Winter Olympics. It stops in San Francisco, New York and Washington, and spends several weeks dazzling Toronto. Wherever it goes, the result is the same: the performances sell out and the critics rave. cds-sep-line clip_image004


Miami, Chicago and Phoenix are added to the We Reinvent the Circus tour. Since its beginnings in 1984, Cirque du Soleil has won many prestigious prizes, including Emmy, Drama Desk, Bambi and Ace awards, Gémeaux and Félix trophies, and a Rose d'Or de Montreux.

Cirque du Soleil's performers have taken part in and won several awards at various festivals throughout the world, including the Festival international du cirque de Monte-Carlo, the Festival mondial du cirque de demain (France), the Festival international de cirque de Vérone (Italy), the Festival international de cirque de Gênes (Italy), and the Wuhan International Acrobatic Art Festival (China).



clip_image005Montreal is the setting for the world premiere of a brand-new production, Nouvelle Expérience, in a new, 2,500-seat big top. The show then hits the road for an extensive run in California.

With this new production, Cirque du Soleil shatters all previous records for ticket sales, and it decides to make its first foray into Europe, staging We Reinvent the Circus in London and Paris. The overseas excursions have just begun.



Nouvelle Expérience continues on its travels across North America, visiting Atlanta for the first time. By the end of an extensive 19-month tour of Canada and the United States, 1.3 million spectators have cheered the show. cds-sep-line


Cirque du Soleil crosses the Pacific and makes a name for itself in the Land of the Rising Sun with Fascination, a collage of the best acts from past shows. The show opens in Tokyo and then moves on to seven other cities, for a total of 118 performances in four months. Meanwhile, in Europe, Cirque du Soleil joins forces with Switzerland's Circus Knie and stages a show in over 60 towns throughout the country. In North America, 1992 sees Cirque du Soleil make its Las Vegas debut when Nouvelle Expérience kicks off a year-long engagement under a big top at the Mirage Hotel. Already juggling several productions, Cirque du Soleil adds a monument to its repertoire of shows: Saltimbanco. Premiering in Montreal, this latest production begins a lengthy tour of North America. cds-sep-line


Following Nouvelle Expérience's successful run in Las Vegas, Cirque du Soleil moves into a theatre built to its specifications at the new Treasure Island Hotel. A 10-year contract is signed with Mirage Resorts to stage Mystère, a gigantic production befitting this show business capital. Saltimbanco completes its 19-month North American tour of a dozen cities, receiving resounding ovations from 1.4 million spectators. cds-sep-line


clip_image006Saltimbanco embarks on a six-month run in Tokyo in 1994 that attracts a great deal of attention. The same year, Cirque du Soleil celebrates its tenth anniversary with another production, Alegría. True to tradition, the two-year North American tour is launched in Montreal. Meanwhile, Mystère continues to create a sensation in Las Vegas, and Saltimbanco returns to Montreal for a brief run.

cds-sep-line clip_image007


While Alegría pursues its triumphant North American tour, Cirque du Soleil responds to a request from the Canadian government and creates a show for the heads of state gathered at the G7 Summit in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Also in 1995, Saltimbanco sets out to conquer Europe. Cirque's spectacular white big top with seating for 2,500 spectators makes its first stop in Amsterdam, followed by Munich, Berlin, Düsseldorf, and Vienna. Amsterdam becomes the site of Cirque du Soleil's European Headquarters. cds-sep-line


clip_image008In April, Cirque launches Quidam in Montreal. After finishing its hometown run, Quidam heads off on a three-year North American tour.

Meanwhile, Saltimbanco continues its European tour, with stops in London, Hamburg, Stuttgart, Antwerp, Zurich and Frankfurt, while Alegría sets out to tour Asia for a few months.

In November 1996, Sylvie Fréchette, Olympic synchronized swimming gold-medallist, joined Cirque du Soleil as a performer and coach for the aquatic show "O".



Quidam continues to capture the hearts of North American spectators, adding two new cities, Denver and Houston, to the tour. On the other side of the Atlantic, the curtain falls on Saltimbanco at London's Royal Albert Hall, marking the end of a two-year European tour. Alegría kicks off its own tour of Europe a few weeks later. But Cirque du Soleil's adventures do not end there. In May 1997, Cirque du Soleil announced that shooting would begin for a film inspired by its show Alegría. In Alegria the film, the magical spellbinding universe of Cirque becomes the backdrop for a tender love story between a street performer (Frac) and the lead singer of a travelling circus (Giulietta).

The year 1997 begins with the inauguration of the brand new International Headquarters in Montreal, the Studio, where all of Cirque's shows will be created and produced.

Construction of the International Headquarters was completed in late 1996, making it possible for more than 500 permanent Montreal employees to work together. It is there that all of Cirque du Soleil's shows are created and produced. Construction of the Headquarters represented an investment of approximately 40 million dollars.

Cirque du Soleil's International Headquarters are in Montreal. In addition, it has four regional headquarters: the Americas, Asia-Pacific, European and Las Vegas headquarters.




While Alegría pursues its journey across Europe, Quidam finishes up its North American tour, which includes a stopover in Dallas, a first for Cirque du Soleil. During its three-year tour, almost 1,000 performances have been held under the blue-and-yellow big top. All in all, over 2,500,000 North American spectators have applauded Quidam.

Furthermore, in October 1998, Cirque du Soleil's second resident show, "O", takes to the stage of a new theatre at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. This production is Cirque's first aquatic show. In December of the same year, Cirque inaugurates yet another permanent show, La Nouba, at the Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Florida. Cirque du Soleil also restages Saltimbanco in Ottawa for a few weeks before sending it off on an Asia-Pacific tour scheduled to last three years.

In November 1998, shooting began on a first large-format (IMAX) film, which will feature performances by various Cirque du Soleil artists in natural and historic sites around the world. Journey of Man has opened in movie theatres in December 1999.



clip_image011Saltimbanco sets up shop in Asia and the Pacific and begins a three-year tour of the region in Sydney. In March, Quidam embarks on a four-year European tour in Amsterdam. In addition, Cirque du Soleil's brand-new production, Dralion, launches its North American tour in Montreal.

In May 1999, the Alegría production, which has already dazzled audiences on three continents, finds a permanent home at Beau Rivage, a new resort in Biloxi, Mississippi. This resort is a property of Mirage Resorts Incorporated, Cirque du Soleil's partner for its two Las Vegas productions. The dinner show Pomp Duck and Circumstance sets off on a European tour. To top it all off, the multimedia division Cirque du Soleil Images releases its first feature film, Alegria, inspired by the show of the same name. Incorporating actual Alegría acts, the film is directed by Franco Dragone and produced by Stéphane Reichel ("Crash", "Black Robe", "Quest for Fire"). Alegria the film was launched in theatres in April 1999.

Its dynamic team also produces Cirque du Soleil Presents Quidam, a spectacular television version of the show to be aired around the globe.



CirqueDuSoleil-JourneyOfMan-0686 Audiences on three continents continue to marvel at Cirque du Soleil's four resident shows (La Nouba, Mystère, "O" and Alegría) and three touring productions (Quidam, Saltimbanco and Dralion). In the year 2000 alone, close to 6 million spectators will attend Cirque du Soleil shows worldwide. Moreover, movie fans will enjoy seeing Cirque du Soleil in its first-ever large-format IMAX production, entitled Cirque du Soleil Journey of Man (Cirque du Soleil Passages in French). Distributed by Sony Pictures Classics, the film will open in Montreal, New York and Los Angeles in May 2000 after a grand premiere in Berlin in January.

Since 1984, more than 23 million people from around the world have seen one of Cirque du Soleil's productions. On a typical weekend in 2000, some 50,000 people will see one of Cirque's several shows being staged simultaneously around the world. Cirque employed more than 2,100 people, including 500 performers, from several countries. The average age of Cirque du Soleil employees is 32.



cds hq 2 5-17-2009 19-11-49 In Auckland, New Zealand, Alegría kicks off a three-year tour through the immense Asia-Pacific region. In addition, Cirque du Soleil keeps on growing with the February inauguration of a 14,000-square-metre addition to its International Headquarters in Montreal. Audiences on four continents continue to marvel at Cirque du Soleil's three resident shows (La Nouba, Mystère, and "O") and four touring productions (Quidam, Saltimbanco, Alegría and Dralion). In the year 2001 alone, close to 6 million spectators will attend Cirque du Soleil shows worldwide.

Since 1992, close to 2 million people have attended a Cirque du Soleil show in Asia.

By 2001 Cirque du Soleil has produced numerous shows: Cirque du Soleil (1984-1985); La Magie continue (1986); We Reinvent the Circus (1987-1989); Nouvelle Expérience (1990-1991); Fascination (1992); Saltimbanco (1992-2001); Mystère (running since 1993); Alegría (1994-2001); Quidam (1996-2002); "O" (running since October 1998); La Nouba (on stage since December 1998); and Dralion (1999-2001).

Cirque du Soleil has performed in over 120 cities throughout the world, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, New York, Tokyo, Osaka, Hong Kong, Paris, London, Amsterdam, Berlin and Vienna.



card_creative_vigie_3 The touring show Varekai, by first time director Dominic Chapagne (who will continue to direct other Cirque du Soleil productions since then), premiered in April 2002 in Montreal.

During the creation process of Varekai, a film crew was shooting a reality TV series about some of the shows performers and their struggle in the process of the shows development and creation from start to finish. The series was aired world wide in the same year.

On March 24, 2002, Cirque du Soleil performs at the awards show for the 74th Academy Awards (Oscars) at the old Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood (Los Angeles, California).



2099264359_c1f3710a96[1] July 2003, Zumanity at the New York, New York hotel and casino in Las Vegas. First Cirque du Soleil production for adults only. Created by Dominic Chapagne and René Richard Cyr.

Cirque du Soleil creates it first ever production for Television called “Solstrom”. Solstrom is a 13 parts TV series featuring over 250 artists in over 130 acts from many Cirque du Soleil shows and elsewhere. It also includes a number of celebrity guest performances.



img_ka02 On June 16, 2004 - Cirque du Soleil set a new record for the Guinness Book of World Records when they gathered 544 employees in the Montreal Headquarters and had them stilts walking at the same place, at the same time.

November 2004, the epic show and biggest Cirque du Soleil production to-date, KA, directed by Robert Lepage was launched at the MGM Grand hotel and casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Cirque du Soleil celebrates its 20th birthday with the people of Montreal in the streets of their hometown and location of their corporate headquarters. The recording of this event is later published on TV under the name “Midnight Sun”  (Soleil de Minuit).



The first touring show after almost three years was launched in April in Montreal, Canada. The name of the show is “Corteo” and has an “Italian theme”. It was created and directed by another new director for Cirque du Soleil, Daniele Finzi Pasca.

Reflections in blue - 2005 - FinaleCirque created and performed the special creation "Reflections in Blue" (Réflexions de bleu), a unique one-night water show as part of the opening ceremonies for the XI. World Aquatics Championships (FINA) in Montreal, Canada



love large Logo_36a699 The Beatles “Love” at the Mirage resort and casino in Las Vegas. The first official collaboration with the Beatles since their last public performance on January 30, 1969. It is also the first Cirque du Soleil production that does not incorporate live music, since it uses original Beatles material that was mixed and re-arranged by Sir George Martin and his son Giles Martin.

Delirum, the first Music Concert and arena show production is launched in January of 2006. The concert show was created and directed by Michel Lemieux & Victor Pilon and is full of references to traditional Cirque du Soleil touring shows, visually and musically. Delirum will run for only two years and not continue to tour outside the United States (with the exception of its final performances in London, UK) for unknown reasons.

For the World Out-games 2006 - Cirque du Soleil performs the Hand in Hand Act. The opening ceremonies for the 1st World Out-games with 30,000 spectators was held in Montreal's Olympic stadium on Saturday night July 29, 2006.



After another two years without a new touring show, Kooza, directed by David Shiner, debuted in April in Montreal, Canada. Kooza goes back to the traditional Circus theme and elements.

November 2007, debut of the seasonal resident show Wintuk at the Wamu Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York City, NY.

The oldest active touring show of Cirque du Soleil, Saltimbanco is converted from a Big Top show to an Arena show. This will allow the show to visit new places where it could not go before, reaching new audiences to capture their imagination.

xlisuperbowl Cirque presented a Pre-Game Show at Super Bowl XLI (41.), the American football game to decide the National Football League (NFL) champion for the 2006 season at Dolphin Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida. The American Football Conference (AFC) champion Indianapolis Colts (16-4) defeated the National Football Conference (NFC) champion Chicago Bears (15-4), 29-17. This performance was produced by David Saltz.

kooza_news122_2On September 25, 2007 - Cirque du Soleil's contortionists, Natasha Patterson, 10, born in San Francisco, Julie Bergez, 14, from France and Dasha Sovik, 15, from Russia, who perform in KOOZA, set a new Guinness World Record™ for the Highest Circus Act ever performed at the top of Toronto's CN Tower, the World's Tallest Freestanding Tower. This feat was performed in the Glass Floor observation deck, 342 meters (1,122 feet) above the ground and as high up on Toronto's CN Tower.



First resident shows outside the United States opened in Asia. Zaia, a production for the Sands Corp. resort and casino “The Venetian” at the Cotai-Strip in Macao, China and Zed, a production for the Walt Disney resort in Tokyo, Japan. Also launched was the first production that involves a celebrity and star in his own right, the show “Criss Angel – Believe” at the Luxor hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

Delirum, which tour ended earlier in 2008, returned, but this time in big-screen format. It is only shown for a few days at selected theatres within the United States in August and once more for another three days during its “Encore” performances in October the same year.

cds-expo2008 Cirque du Soleil's tribute to The Beatles ”A Day In The Life” and Carol Woods & Timmy Mitchums (from "Across the Universe") performance of "Let It Be" at the 50th Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, California. In the same year, Cirque du Soleil performed during the day-parade, called "Awakening of the Serpent", for the "Water" Expo 2008 in public at the city of Zaragoza in Spain, Europe. Cirque du Soleil also created a special show for this anniversary, which was performed 5 times on three days at the Colisée Pepsi in Québec City. In December,  Cirque du Soleil presented an almost 1 hour long special one-time performance at the "La Notte Bianca" festival and street performances in Lecce, an ancient and annually celebrated event, in Italy, Europe.



The big-top show Alegria is converted to an Arena show, like the other older Cirque du Soleil production “Saltimbanco” a few years earlier. A new touring show with Insects as theme, featuring Brazilian music and vibes, “OVO” premiered in April in Montreal, Canada.


Cirque du Soleil Articles in this Series