Set in a world where physical ability meets the extraordinary of
Cirque du Soleil, the show Zarkana has embraced its new home of ARIA
Resort & Casino in Las Vegas.
Taking the space formerly occupied by Cirque’s Elvis themed show,
Zarkana began its Las Vegas residency in November 2012 after engagements
in New York City, Madrid, and Moscow.
The name Zarkana is a fusion of the words “bizarre” and “arcane” (arcane means “mystery” or “secret”).
The twisted fictional world of Zarkana is an elusive destination that
is fantastic yet bizarre. The name refers to the irresistibly odd and
delightfully strange aura of this place and its inhabitants.
Zark, the ringmaster of an extraordinary circus coming back to life,
guides us in an abandoned theatre populated by a motley collection of
off-the-wall characters and incomparable acrobats.
Zarkana is a visual vortex set in a twisted acrobatic fantasy
universe where, little by little, chaos and craziness give way to a true
The show opens with clowns Hocus and Pocus who emerge after a hiatus
of many years in an abandoned theater to awaken the Movers, white-clad
spirits of the theater.
Hocus and Pocus lead the reunion together with the Movers, bringing
to life an extraordinary circus. Hocus and Pocus bungle their way
through an eye-popping acrobatic extravaganza of high-energy acts
reminiscent of the golden age of circus and side shows.
Here is a look at a few of the most entertaining acts:
A ladder duo exhibits a mastery of balance while climbing higher and
higher to reach Sleepy Clown, who is trapped in the theater rafters more
than 30’ above the stage.
Emerging from the depths of the theater, identical twin brothers
attach themselves to straps and fly high into the air and over the seats
of the theater, immersing the audience in the beauty of their
movements. Accompanied by the captivating melody of Mandragora, their
graceful maneuvers leave one and all breathless with their aerial
prowess and ethereal fluidity.
In a joyous reunion reminiscent of a day at the park, the Movers
enchant with childlike enthusiasm as they take part in a celebration of
the Russian Bar artists – one who is launched high above the narrow and
flexible bar doing twists and multiple somersaults before landing
expertly back on the bar with the aid of her powerful porters.
Under the spell of Kundalini, the snake lady, and accompanied by a
chorus of lithe fire breathers, the high wire artists exude amazing
balance, control and precision as they speed across their wire
performing jaw-dropping stunts – all while avoiding the ball of fire
that taunts them.
Cyr Wheels and Cerceaux
Chasing Pocus into a strange world seemingly on a planet far from
home, the extraterrestrial Jovians perform outlandish stunts on giant
wheels, while others fly through the air twisting through suspended
aerial hoops creating a dizzying tableau which reflects the kookiness of
this foreign land.
The Oracle, an accomplished visual artist, interprets and summarizes
the events that have been uncovered and those still to come as she
creates temporary masterpieces made of sand.
Caught in the web and under the spell of Tarantula, the spider lady,
flying acrobats crisscross high above the stage with meticulous timing
as they are launched off platforms and bars, creating an effect of
visual symmetry and tight choreography.
Wheel of Death
Testing the quantum machine, an experiment led by the Mad Scientist,
leads to the unveiling of an outlandish dual caged apparatus with two
artists who leap into place resulting in an act of high speed and daring
movements, powered by pure physical strength.
Illustrating a moment of quiet poetry and refined grace, complemented
by an enchanting and haunting score, a solo artist takes center stage
effortlessly balancing his weight with the fluidity of ballet and the
strength of an athlete.
Human pyramids engulf the stage in an act of amazing power and
agility. As the group of acrobats defies gravity and space, they race
across the stage with precise movements and playful choreography. Using
only their bodies to suspend and propel each other, the acrobats
astonish with their strength.
Zarkana performs Friday through Tuesday at 7 pm and 9:30 pm. There are no performances on Wednesdays or Thursdays.
Tickets start at $69. ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas is located at 3730 S Las Vegas Boulevard, Las Vegas.
Copyright © 2011 by Santa Monica Mirror. All rights reserved.