Quidam: A Review

Quidam is one of the tours currently being performed by Cirque de Soleil, which just wrapped up their stint at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Quidam is a very brief show- only about 90 minutes long and done two acts, with a half hour intermission in between.  It’s a beautiful, amazing and wonderfully staged performance that sometimes alternates between mesmerizing and confusing. 
You’ll get the plot easily enough: a young girl, Zoe, is estranged from her parents through their inattention and drifts into the make-believe world of the titular character, Quidam.   
Quidam himself is a headless man with a bowler hat and an umbrella, who is somehow supposed to represent everyone and no one and only makes a handful of appearances in the performance.

When you figure it out, let me know.
Typical of any artsty-fartsy performance, there’s lots of subtext to pick up on.  My favorite was John- one of the main characters who acts as something of a guide/MC throughout the show.  He’s got a dual role as both teacher and father figure to Zoe, signified by literally stepping into her father’s shoes after he misplaces them in his aloofness.  Don’t worry- John gives them back at the end of the show.

John- even though he dresses funny, an all around cool dude.

As I said, some of the performances are incredible.  A contortionist suspends herself about 100 feet above the stage and performs an aerial silk routine that traverses the entire length of the curtain, all the way down to the stage.  Despite the band playing in the background, you can hear a pin drop during this one. 

Another stunner is the Statue- a pairing of male/female gymnasts who move incrementally in sync with each other to create some impressive balancing acts.  Another real crowd pleaser there.
The funniest part of the show is The Clown- creating a show within the show to cheer Zoe by bringing audience members onstage to help out with some improv.  Naturally when you have amateurs being set up by a pro, the results are hilarious.  Maybe even hysterical.  
When this guy’s on stage, good things happen.
The show wraps up with a spectacle of imagery as the entire cast returns to stage and Zoe reconciles with her parents.  Tickets are pretty affordable, and trust me when I say a good time was had by all.  Working the venue I got to see it four times and never got bored.  If you get the chance, check it out. 

Cirque de Soleil Quidam Trailer

2 thoughts on “Quidam: A Review

  1. Ah, John, I'm green with envy. I've wanted to see Cirque du Soleil for years. Almost saw a show a few years ago while on vacation in Orlando, Florida. I was off on my own, got within sight of the building where they were showing, and decided to wait until someone could go with me. I've been kicking myself ever since.

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