Looking for something unique to do in Central Florida you’ll be talking about for weeks? James Cameron and the creative team behind “Avatar,” the highest grossing movie of all time, has combined forces with Cirque du Soleil and created a unique arena show headed to Tampa on Thursday, March 17.
We have been following Toruk – The First Flight since it opened in October 2015 and the photos that have come from the show so far have been stunning. In a first for Cirque, Toruk is narrated by an English speaking storyteller and serves as a sort of prequel to the James Cameron blockbuster.
However, it’s the show’s amazing lighting system I’m most fascinated with. In total, there are 40 projectors that bathe the arena on not only the stage, but the audience as well. This system is so sophisticated that certain performers wear tracking devices in their costumes that allow spotlights and certain projections to follow and react to them in real time.
Perhaps even more impressive is the app that you can download before the show that gives audience members a chance to be involved in the show. In addition to getting information and videos both before and after the show, you can input your seat number and face your screen towards the stage and images will appear in real time in conjunction with what’s happening on stage. For example, snowfall can sweep across one part of the arena and reach the far side through hundreds of cell phone screens in unison. Check out the video below for more info.
The show has 16 unique puppets that bring Pandora to life. “On Pandora, the animals are strange, menacing and beautiful all at once,” explained puppet designer Patrick Martel. “These six-legged muscular creatures exude a sense of grace and nobleness, which I wanted to convey. I wanted my designs to be a tribute to nature, as is the show.”
Toruk mixes a blend of familiar creatures from the Avatar movie as well as new creations for the Cirque version. Which brings us to the various Banshees which fly all around Pandora. In this case, 16 kites fly around the arena and even above the audience’s heads.
If you’re a fan of Cirque du Soleil spectaculars, love Avatar, or are just plain curious what Disney’s version of Avatar could be inspired by, you can buy tickets to Toruk by clicking this link. Stay tuned next week and TPU will deliver a full review of the show!
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Images Copyright: Errisson Lawrence © 2015 Cirque du Soleil