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Cavalia: Of Horses and Men

Ever since we spied the white tent tops during my birthday dinner last month, I’ve been keen to check out the production, Cavalia, which is housed inside. I read numerous reviews of the show on various blogs, and was really intrigued by the idea of an equestrian ballet. We had high expectations of Cavalia, because it was conceived by Normand Latourelle, one of Cirque du Soleil’s co-founders, and couldn’t wait to see what magic the performers and horses would conjure up. 

The show started with some questions about Cavalia being flashed on the large screen, and the audience gamely participated in this interactive segment. I thought it was a good way to share information about the show, and one of the things we learnt was that the horses in Cavalia are mainly geldings, which are castrated male horses.

The constantly changing digital background, projected on a 60 metre-wide screen, was an interesting way of creating the set, and was instrumental in transporting the audience into various dream-like environments. This made the various acts even more impressive, and I found myself frequently watching the ever-changing backgrounds, while the horses galloped around the stage.

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I couldn’t help but marvel at how the artists performed stunt after stunt with deceiving ease, and was particularly amazed by those who were performing on (yes, on, not with) the horses. We went horse-riding once in Fontainebleau, and I was terrified when my horse started trotting, not galloping, mind you. I can only imagine the amount of skill needed to perform all those stunts on the horses, which were galloping across the stage at top speed.

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It was evident that the trainers shared a close bond with the horses, as they were constantly whispering to the horses, and patting them at the end of each act. It was nice to see that the horses looked so majestic and healthy, but more importantly, they looked like they were enjoying their time on the stage.

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The horses definitely made the show more unique, but I must say that I was equally impressed by the artists. I held my breath and grimaced as they somersaulted, lifted each other up, formed giant pyramids, twirled around, and did splits in mid-air. The audience clapped appreciatively each time a complicated stunt was performed, and you could see that the performers thrived on the applause, and were beaming away proudly.

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I could go on and on about the show, but you should really watch it for yourself, to be able to fully appreciate it. Here’s a preview of what to expect at Cavalia:

Cavalia is on at the white tents next to Marina Bay Sands, from now till Sunday, 5 October 2014. Tickets range from $58 to $308, excluding service fees. Get your tickets or check for ticket availability online at Sistic.

Tip: Do dress comfortably to watch Cavalia, as it can get a little warm inside the tent. If you’ve got a small paper fan or pocket fan, you can perhaps bring it along, especially if you’re catching the afternoon production.

*We received a pair of complimentary tickets to Cavalia, and all images used in this post are courtesy of Cavalia. All opinions are my own.


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