Corteo Cirque Du Soleil: A Unique Celebration of Life

Julie Dionne, Sante D'Amours Fortunato, Aurelie Deroux-Dauphin, and Inna Teslenko are the four artists that perform acrobatic stunts on giant chandeliers. Credit: Lucas Saportiti

Cirque Du Soleil’s Corteo is a circus production that follows the story of a clown who dreams about his funeral in a carnival setting. During the show, his memories and dreams are combined with comedy, music, and impressive performances. The Dreamer Clown’s former lovers dance and sway on chandeliers and acrobats perform stunts on trampoline beds giving them the appearance of young grandchildren. An artist marionette acts like a puppet to play with Mauro the Dreamer Clown which brings back a childhood memory from the beach.

Original music is used to make the mood upbeat and brings out a sense of fun and celebration during a typically sad time. Watched over by graceful angels, the clown plunges into a world of dreamland to imagine his funeral as a parade of life.

Corteo is an extremely unique experience because it includes acts from acrobats on ladders and poles to humourous acts with golf and balloons. Using large helium balloons, the clowness Valentina Paylevanyan floats over the audience with delight similar to a child. Characters like Paylevanyan also interact with the audience to enhance the experience and make it more fun.

Not only is Corteo diverse in its acts, but it is also diverse in the performers and people who make the show come to life. There are 51 performers from 18 different countries who travel around to perform shows all over the world.

Johan Juslin, a 26-year-old juggler from Finland, has been juggling for 16 years but joined Cirque Du Soleil in October 2017. He was invited to auditions after graduating from The National Circus School in Montreal. He says his favorite thing about being part of Cirque Du Soleil is juggling and feeling good about his performance. “I enjoy doing it in a different way,” he says, “[it] feels less like a job.” Like Juslin, performers are able to bring their personalities into their acts which makes for a more unique performance.

But there’s a lot that goes on behind the stage needed for the show to come together. Performers have to train and not just for their acts. Since Cirque Du Soleil travels, there can’t be makeup artists and hair stylists for every performer, so they have to learn to do it themselves.

For Corteo and all Cirque Du Soleil shows, there are seamstresses and designers to make sure costumes are both eye-catching and comfortable. Costumes are custom made for each performer to ensure mobility and there can be many different costumes for each performer; some of them have up to five costume changes in one show.

Traveling with Corteo are 110 people with ages ranging from 23 to 60. Organization is vital for easy setup and clean up, but even with meticulous organization and efficiency, it takes 12 hours to set up shows and about 4 hours to take down and expertly pack in 21 trucks.

Produced by Daniele Finzi Pasca, Corteo with a duration of about 2 hours and 10 minutes has already visited 64 cities in 19 countries and it will continue to travel to other places. Cirque Du Soleil’s Corteo is in Broomfield until Sunday before it moves to Loveland. Corteo is an exciting experience with memorable characters, music, and acts that bring the story of celebration and fun to life.