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There's Nothing Creepy About the Insects in Cirque du Soleil's OVO

One of the insects in OVO
One of the insects in OVO Cirque du Soleil
Phoenix, it’s time to get buggy.

A new Cirque du Soleil show is coming to Talking Stick Resort Arena from February 20 to the 23. OVO is about a day in the life of an insect colony that gets an unexpected visitor, which comes in the form of an egg. It's slowly welcomed into the colony and even forms a special bond with one of the ladybugs.

Unlike other Cirque du Soleil shows, this one, which premiered over a decade ago and is making its debut in Phoenix, has been curated with all ages in mind.

The Montreal, Canada-based entertainment company usually bases its shows loosely around a theme, such as water with O, or with ideas, like The Beatles Love. “I think something important to note is that this show has a clear beginning, middle, and end,” said Christine Achampong, Senior Publicist for OVO. “There is less need for interpretation with this show.”

Because of the easy-to-follow storyline, Achampong stressed that the show is more family-friendly than others in the franchise. The artists straddle a fine line between making sure the costumes are life-like but palatable enough for those who may be uncomfortable around bugs.

The performers do insect-like movements, so the creatures don’t exactly look like they do in a science textbook. Achampong added the costumes are "very lively and colorful" to help ease any fears that viewers may have.

The process of making these costumes took numerous hours of background research to create something that was both true to the insect and also flexible enough for the acrobats to perform in.

Music is an essential part of any Cirque du Soleil show, and OVO is no exception.

“Unlike a ballet where the performer follows the music, the musicians follow the acrobats,” said Achampong.

This practice allows for safer performances, because not all stunts take the same amount of time during each performance, which helps prevent injuries and other accidents. 

There are 52 acrobats from over 14 countries performing stunts that include trampolining, juggling, and tumbling. Traveling and performing for so many months at a time can get draining, but Achampong said that it’s not as lonely as one may think. Much like the insects they perform as, the cast has formed strong bonds with each other.

click to enlarge It's an insect party in OVO! - CIRQUE DU SOLEIL
It's an insect party in OVO!
Cirque du Soleil
“It really just feels like one big family,” said Achampong. “There is always something new to learn from someone.

Cirque du Soleil OVO is scheduled from Friday, February 20, to Sunday, February 23, at Talking Stick Resort Arena. Tickets can be purchased via Ticketmaster.
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Barbara Smith
Contact: Barbara Smith