I was provided with tickets to see Volta in exchange for my review. I received no other compensation.
I have been obsessed with Cirque du Soleil since seeing Alegría in 2004, (then Quidam in 2005, Kurios in 2013 and now Volta in 2018). Completely obsessed.
I watch videos on YouTube of shows and stunts and their headquarters in Montreal when I’m having a bad day. We have Cirque magnets scattered across the front of our fridge. Having abandoned (most of) my
weirdly unrealistic dreams of being a member of a troupe performing under the Grand Chapiteau, I harbor a (now not-so) secret desire that one of my children will be bitten by the bug and want to join the circus.
So I like Cirque du Soleil a little bit, and when they contacted me to come see the newest show at Marymoor Park in Redmond, WA, I jumped at the chance. In fact, I believe I yelled out loud, texted three people and responded to the email rather rapidly.
(I didn’t realize we were being invited to the opening night, so that was just an added surprise.)
Volta by Cirque du Soleil
Volta is INCREDIBLE.
It starts out with a bang, big lights and glitter and a game show…and the excitement never really dies down from there.
There’s a killer double-dutch team with light-up jump ropes, then a guy doing some tricks with a giant hoop. There’s an amazing duo on a unicycle, a colorful rollerskating imp, and a giant trampoline apparatus that spins around.
The hair suspension artist (YES, that is a thing, and incredible!) and the BMX ramps in the second half are just as stunning…our friend who came with us had their mouth open the whole show.
Cirque du Soleil shows really are a treat for all of the senses (including the Dragons’ Breath, if you want to get “taste” in there too), and Volta is no exception.
They also have some amazing merch options as well – from sassy teeshirts for small people to fuzzy furball pompoms you can put on your keys or purses to actual purses. Prices are actually pretty reasonable for merchandise!
So now that I’ve told you all about my trip to see Volta, let me convince you to take your kids to see a Cirque du Soleil show!
Why you should take your kids to see a Cirque du Soleil show:
- The Story. There’s always a story behind the performance. Sometimes it’s obvious, and sometimes it’s kind of subtle, but you can always check the website or one of the official programs to get the backstory. It adds another layer to the experience for sure!
- The Music. It’s catchy & haunting (I can still sing you most of the Alegría theme song, 14 years later), and the performers are incredible. The young lady in Volta also played a glorious electric violin, as well as belting out some pretty gorgeous notes.
- The Costuming. Every single detail of the costumes is stunning and goes with the theme. It differentiates one type of character from another, or accentuates the movement of the artist. The colors go with the scenery and complement each other and I can imagine somebody’s kiddo wanting one as a Halloween costume.
- The Good Clean Fun. All of the shows I’ve seen (and most of the ones I’ve read about, EXCEPT ZUMANITY) are free of cursing and sexual innuendo. Other than the fact that you’ll have to deal with your kids wanting to do acrobatics off your couch for a few weeks, these shows are good for all ages (except AGAIN, Zumanity.)
- The Skills. In Volta, there was an articulated ladder that dropped down from the ceiling and spun around while people hung off it, and a woman who spun around, suspended by only her hair. In some shows, there are contortionists doing amazing, stunning things with their bodies, and swings flinging people every which way. There are dozens of people doing incredible things, drawing you in and capturing your child’s imagination.
- The Timing. Cirque shows are manageable as far as theatre goes. It’s 2 one-hour acts and a 25 minute intermission between them. Short enough to hold a kid’s attention with a long enough break to have them run any excess energy out (or use the restroom, should the need arise).
- The Wonder. The look on Wolfgang’s face made the 4 hours roundtrip drive 100% worth it. The small children sitting around us had a really similar look. Most of the adults did too (though I’m pretty sure I saw one guy with a really confused look on his face during the hair suspension part.)
- The Prices. Tickets are not as pricey as you would think. It’s only slightly more expensive than a Friday night at the movie theatres, and definitely FAR more memorable than whatever is playing at the cinerama.
So all in all, give Cirque a shot for a special family night out. Despite the fact your kids will be vaulting off the walls for weeks, it’s something your family will talk about for years.