Skip to main content

Review: Cavalia's Odysseo (Continues into August 2012 in Toronto)

Cavalia - Odysseo
continues into August 2012
at the Port Lands, Toronto

An enchanted evening awaits under the ingeniously designed white big top tent on the Port Lands at the foot of Cherry Street. Cavalia has pulled out all the stops in Odysseo, their second touring show, designed to dazzle and delight with the undeniable beauty of horses, acrobats and a lush set design. The show unfolds in a seamless flow of riders, acrobats and horses with live music that's played from the wings.

Under the tent is tiered seating around a magical stage setting full of Cirque-style bells and whistles, including a carousel that drops from the ceiling, a mountainside, and for the finale, a small lake that fills up as you watch. Video backdrops and curtains add to the multi-dimensional effect, with the stage blending right into the background.

The performers hail from all over the world, including Canada, the U.S., France, Russia, Spain, Ukraine, Poland, New Zealand and Brazil and a troupe of dancer/drummer/acrobats from Guinea who play the kora for good measure. The troupe of 61 gorgeous and talented horses includes a range of breeds- and hours and hours of grooming to keep those long manes and tails tangle free. Interestingly, 22 are stallions and the remainder geldings. Speaking from experience, it's quite unusual to encounter more than 1 or 2 stallions in a stable; they're highly competitive and feisty to say the least. The unusual ratio explains the absence of mares - surely how they keep all those virile males in line.

I studied dressage myself for about 15 years and I know what they made to seem effortless is in fact an immense labour of love. They performed some of the art's more advanced moves, including the half and full pass (when the horse moves laterally as well as forward), passage (a trot with an extended moment of suspension) and piaffe (when he seems to trot nearly on the spot). There was jumping and acrobatic riding, often at what looked like breakneck speed. Most impressive are the choreographed movements of the horses without riders. Despite the occasional skirmish amongst the all-male equine members of the cast, they returned to formation flawlessly.

I'm trying not to be consumed with envy - had I known I could have made a living as a dressage rider, you'd be reading a review from someone else.


Popular posts from this blog

Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company Spring 2013 Toronto Performances

From a media release:

The new season brings
Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company
to new heights and new audiences

March 20-24, 2013 - A Night in Madrid
April 25-28, 2013 - Annual Toronto Season - World Premiere of Portales

TORONTO : Following on the heels of Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company's (EESDC) 30th anniversary year where its production Aguas/Waters was named one of the top five dance shows of 2012 by NOW Magazine, the early months of 2013 are full of excitement and possibility for Esmeralda and the company, which brings the finest flamenco and Spanish Classical Dance to Toronto stages.

March 20-24, 2013 - A Night in Madrid
Company dancers Esmeralda Enrique and Paloma Cortés perform Spanish Classical dance with the celebrated Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir for A Night in Madrid featuring the Iberian flavoured music of composer Luigi Boccherini who made his home in Spain. His work is infused with the sounds of Spanish and gypsy folk music.

March 20-24 …

Film News - imagineNATIVE Embargo Collective at the Berlin Film Fest

Hot Off the Presses:
(and gosh, doesn't that expression sound quaint these days?)

to have its European Premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival 2010
(Internationale Filmfestspiele Berlin 11.-21.02.10)

(Toronto, February 3rd, 2010) The imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival is pleased to announce the official selection of the festival’s Embargo Collective programme for the Forum Expanded section of this year’s Berlin International Film Festival. This programme of works was commissioned by the imagineNATIVE festival for its 10th anniversary and will have its European premiere Monday, February 15th, 8.30pm at Cinema Arsenal 2 and a repeat screening Wednesday, February 17th, 4pm at CinemaxX 6.

Curated by imagineNATIVE’s Artistic Director Danis Goulet, the Embargo Collective is an international group of seven Indigenous artists at the forefront of the changing global landscape of Indigenous cinema. Inspired by Lars von Trier’s The Five Obstructi…

Guitar Rock | Happy Freuds - Echo Of Sounds Independent: May 31, 2019

Guitar Rock
Happy Freuds - Echo Of Sounds
Independent: May 31, 2019
Stream/Buy on Bandcamp
Stream it on Spotify

With tight musicians and intriguing lyrics, Happy Freuds delivers high energy guitar rock with stylistic flair on Echo Of Sounds, their debut release. Produced with a minimum of overdubs or fixes, the album consists of a mix of original material, rearrangements of works from others and selected, less known, classic rock.

A kinetic rhythm section is the bones of the music, offering interesting patterns that augment sometimes unexpected harmonic changes. It's brainy rock, in other words, meant for music lovers who can appreciate the quality. Teo's vocals are raspy and expressive, growly when necessary - perfect for the musical mode. Teo also covers lead guitar, adapt at ear worm leads, with a tone that can be clean or dirty as required

Their sound ranges from straight up hard rock in tracks like The Mountain to the pop-flavoured acoustic Background Noise and folky To …