The Tech of Cirque – Ka

By on December 23, 2004

My wife and I recently returned from a trip to Vegas where we took in the latest Cirque du Soleil show, Ka. If you have ever experienced a Cirque show you know what I’m talking about when I say that there is nothing like it. Ka, however represents a change in direction for the 20 year old circus troop from Montreal. Ka leaves behind many of the acrobatic and gymnastic routines and instead focuses on a story while including martial arts and some gymnastics. (Review)

The star of the show is the technology created to stage the show. The theater itself cost an estimated $100 million to build. Every one of the 1,900 seats have speakers built into them so the sound completely surrounds you during the show. The stage consists of two pieces that move independently of each other. One piece is about 30’ by 30’ and slides forward and back. The other one is 21’ by 48’ and it lifts, tilts and rotates depending upon the scene. It is operated by a $10 million dollar gantry crane.

The development of which delayed the opening of the show for nearly five months. To see it in action is quite impressive. The highlight of the show was the final battle scene in which the stage is tilted completely vertical giving the audience a sky view of the battlefield as actors fight while dangling on wires. It’s obvious the pride they take in the stage itself. During the curtain call it is hoisted up and lit so the audience can see just how massive it truly is.

If you’re headed to Vegas go see this show. It ain’t cheap, but I’ve never left a Cirque show thinking it wasn’t worth the ticket price. Besides it’s the same as a ticket to see Celine. C’mon, that’s an easy decision.