The media got its first glimpse this morning of Iris, the new permanent Cirque du Soleil show set for previews at the Kodak Theatre in July and an official opening September 25th. The Quebec gang presented two show-stopping numbers, the first involving a pair of airborne male acrobats and the second showcasing what can best be described as the Cirque’s rooftop version of a James Cagney gangster movie climax (“Top of the world, maman!”).
FishbowlLA has seen a few Cirque shows, and we can honestly say that there’s something extra special going on here, thanks to the subject matter of cinema, the heart-of-Hollywood show location, and the fact that the music is provided by none other than Tim Burton right-hand band Danny Elfman. The composer’s sensibilities are as perfect a match for a Cirque moviola as they are for the filmmaker’s phantasmagorical canvases.
Cirque President and COO Daniel Lamarre explained to the assembled audience that the spark for Iris came when he attended the 2002 Academy Awards at the very same theater (just the second year the Kodak hosted the show). Watching A-list celebs give the Cirque number a standing ovation, he told himself that there was something extra-special to be harnessed in his beloved LA. His instincts, based on this morning’s evidence, were spot on.
What’s going to be really interesting to watch is how the arrival, at the Kodak, of a tribute to cinema that appears to hit the kind of high marks missed in recent years by the Oscars, will impact the Academy’s perennial attempts to revamp their show. Certainly, these are two different beasts, but as if the Oscars didn’t have it hard enough already, they are now going to have to deal at the Kodak with an extremely hard act to follow. Ca, c’est le showbiz…
[Photo: Mark Dulong]