"Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy Adventure emblazoned Clowes Memorial Hall as a paradise of mime, movement and mimicry beyond imagination on Oct. 9, opening their weeklong Broadway Across America Indianapolis tour.
The two-hour show is billed as non-stop acrobatic action but creator and director Neil Goldberg is at heart a musical theater song-and-dance artist and the two dozen performers from around the globe are, underneath the hype, classically trained in movement, plying their talents in a variety of spaces and formats. The tip off for dance performance as opposed to pure circus is the through line with interweaving stories supporting the point that it may be a jungle out there, yet to survive we had better get along by being trustworthy and trusting others; by being respectful and expecting to be respected. Playfulness yes; over-the-top no.
Paired with what other critics term “sassy staging” by Goldberg is intriguing choreography by Tara Jeanne Vallee. Vallee’s credits are East Coast regional and worldwide touring as a dancer and choreographer. She’s won world tap championships. Her variety of styles applies distinctive characteristics to each emulated animal.
Cirque Dreams isn’t mere “acrobatic audacity” or “mind-tingling spectacle.” There’s a lot of down-home wisdom to absorb during two hours of “re-examining the body’s possibilities.”