Cirque de Soleil kicked off its latest performance Totem at Citifield last week. (Well, technically the parking lot of Citifield, but more on that later.) The show is filled with crowd-pleasing acts that have audience members holding their collective breath; stunning physiques, including the best pair of abs I’ve ever seen on another woman; the borderline annoying antics of the ubiquitous Cirque de Soleil clowns and the most stunning set of any NYC-based Cirque in recent memory.
Totem starts with disco ball man descending from the heavens on to a set of colorfully costumed jumping frogs, setting the tone for the evolutionary theme of the show. My other favorite acts included the foot jugglers, two women who simultaneously spin flat sequin pillows with all their limbs,
the unicycle and bowl performers, because, seriously, who knew watching girls on unicycles toss bowls at each other could be so entertaining?
the flirtatious and impressive duo trapeze act
and the sexy Native American themed roller skating duet.
The deceptively simple set changes through the use of video image to become a lake, ocean, volcano and a starry night sky.
I noted two things that could be improved on the show: the music was lacking its usual haunting quality and I would have like to have had a lot more vocals from the soulful Esi Acquaah-Harrison.
My other issue was the setting in the Citifield Parking Lot. While the Cirque set was amazing and infinitely more appropriate and intimate than Cirque’s last New York City stage at Radio City Music Hall, it was cold! The worst part is that the porta-potty bathrooms are outside and uncovered. Fortunately, it wasn’t raining or snowing the night I was there, but if it had been that would have been an unpleasant mess.