January 3, 2013

Cavalia’s Odysseo: Breathtaking, Mesmerizing and Must See!


 Cavalia Odysseo

Throughout the year, there are many different shows and attractions that come to our cities. It’s difficult to figure out which ones to add to the calendar and which ones can be over looked. However, certain shows always rise to the top as “must see”. Cavalia is one of those “must see” if it’s in your town!

A few years ago, Cavalia came to Phoenix and it was so popular I wasn’t quick enough to get tickets and couldn’t see it. I have friends who went and loved the show. When I saw the billboards go up around town, I knew I wanted to catch the newest Cavalia, Odysseo, when it was in town.  When I was invited to opening night as a VIT (Very Important Tweeter), there was no question I’d be there.

As guests of Cavalia, BabyGirl and I attended the Odysseo premier and were treated to a tour of the stables after the show, as well as a very special meet and greet. Shown in two acts under an exceptional white “Big Top”, Odysseo is a showcase of both equine and human talent as well as feast for the senses. The show isn’t just “Cirque du Soleil with horses”, despite being created by Normand Latourelle, one of the founders of Cirque du Soleil and the artistic director having spent nearly two decades creating for Cirque.

Cavalia Odysseo is a theatrical experience, an ode to horse and man that marries the equestrian arts, awe inspiring acrobatics and high-tech theatrical effects. Set under a 38-meter tall White Big Top, audiences will be transported around the world as more than 50 horses and an international cast play and demonstrate their intimate bond. The 1,393 square meter stage features a real carousel and a magically appearing 302,000-litre lake in front of a stunning video backdrop the size of three IMAX screens. Odysseo is a two-hour dream that will move the heart and touch the soul. It is an evening that the audience will never forget.

From the moment the lights go down, you’re on the edge of your seat as you’re so close to the extraordinary horses and exceptionally talented artists. Both BabyGirl and I sat there, wide-eyed, watching the show unfold. I was fortunate to have permission to photograph, video and tweet during the performance. Although, I have to say, it was very difficult to divert my attention away from the show. Watching it through a camera lens is not how anyone should see Odysseo!


One thing BabyGirl recognized very early was that in addition to the live singers, all the music was played live as well. Situated on either side of the stage in specially designed “bird’s nests” areas, the musical performers are made to be a part of the show that you hear and feel rather than see. However, BabyGirl homed in on the violin and was excited to hear live violin music being integrated into a very modern show. The music is so important to the show that hearing the different instruments helps create the different experiences.

At intermission, there is an audible buzz as everyone was amazed by the show. With 56 horses and almost the same number of acrobats, each segment is a showcase of talent. The African drumming, singing and acrobatics are not only fun to watch but they get you moving in your seat, too. The horse riders are showing not only exciting tricks but also great strength and athleticism. And the aerial acrobatics will leave you slack-jawed as your eyes widen to take it all in.

After the show, BabyGirl and I were taken on a tour of the stables. This tour is part of the VIP experience that can be purchased as a seating package. The stable is housed in a separate tent and is quite pristeen. After each show, the horses are washed and brushed and settled in for the night. Many of the longer-haired horses will have their mane and tail braided to keep their hair from being damaged. Their care and management is very serious business. These aren’t your average horses. They’re celebrity athletes, really.

As an extra special treat, BabyGirl was able to meet and talk with the show’s violinist. David was exceptionally gracious, and Sarah (our PR liaison) was so kind to arrange this for us. As a student of violin, BabyGirl spends a lot of time playing classical violin. Having the opportunity to meet David and ask questions about playing in such a modern show was so nice. David was encouraging and shared some of his background, including his experience as a Suzuki student, a teacher, and the many hours of practice he still does each day. The Cavalia team really did go above and beyond to arrange this meeting after what was surely a very long and intense day preparing for the opening show.

It’s no wonder Cavalia’s Odysseo has been so well received in Phoenix that the show has been extended until January 20th. If you’re in Phoenix, hurry and get tickets now! If you’ll be in Phoenix, consider adding this to your “must do” while here. This is a very intimate venue and all the seats are close enough to the stage to experience the show as it is intended. There is also plenty of accessible seating for those with mobility concerns.

I was a guest of Cavalia for the Odysseo premier in Scottsdale. I was not required to write this post. This post reflects my views and opinions and was not reviewed or edited by a third party. BabyGirl and I were provided “VIT” tickets to the show, although I had already considered buying tickets before I was invited. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.


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