Cirque du Soleil’s Volta: A Spellbinding Display for All Ages

Photo by Emily Cordonier

The crowd buzzed with excitement and anticipation at the opening of Cirque du Soleil’s newest production, Volta. The impressive tents can be seen at the Zibi Site along the shores of Gatineau, and the Cirque spectacular is drawing fans of all ages – including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau who took some of his family along to opening night.

Of the dozens of Cirque du Soleil shows currently in production around the world, Volta stands apart due to the new addition of action sports such as BMX biking and parkour. These extreme sports are interwoven seamlessly into a show that also includes a stunning musical score, acrobatics, basketball and juggling, jump rope, ballet and some classic clowning.

Volta is about the freedom to choose and the thrill of blazing your own trail. The show centres on the character of Waz, a popular gameshow host, who has lost touch with his inner self in the pursuit of fame. Throughout the performance Waz is enlightened by childhood memories as he encounters free spirits who mean to help him open doors to his inner soul.

During a Cirque performance, it isn’t always the easiest to interpret exactly what is happening at every moment, but that never takes away from the jaw-dropping spectacle that the performers – who are both athletes and artists – put on. Volta takes your breath away with stunts that defy explanation – such as the aerialist who attaches her hair to a metal ring and is then suspended high above the stage, where she proceeds to dance and spin at dizzying speeds. It is truly something to behold.

The deep Volta stage uses every inch to showcase the stunts and talents of its daring performers. In a tent that seats 2,600 audience members, there really are no bad seats in the house.

Volta runs from August 3 until August 27, except Mondays. Shows are at 8:00 pm Tuesday at Saturday, 4:30 pm Thursday to Saturday and on Sunday shows run at 1:30 pm and again at 5:00 pm. Tickets start at $39.