Written and Photographed by Danielle Boise
I had the distinguished pleasure of speaking with Stacey Magiera, one of the performers of Cirque du Soleil's TORUK - The First Flight, which happens to be at Infinite Energy Center in Duluth starting June 15 through June 19. Stacey, who is the Chief of the Anurai Clan, discussed with me how she got involved with Cirque du Soleil and what it means to be part of this creative family.
How does it feel to be part of the Cirque family?
It's amazing, it's a dream come true. Every single day I look forward to going to work. It's a really fun atmosphere, where everyone is creative and likes working together and I am really happy to be part of Cirque du Soleil.
Have you ever worked on another Cirque productions prior to TORUK?
Yes, I've been in two other Cirque du Soleil productions. I was in Viva Elvis in Las Vegas and KA in Las Vegas as well.
How does this show rank in comparison between the other two productions?
Every Cirque du Soleil show is completely different. It's a different storylines, different acrobatics. For me, I am just happy to be part of Cirque du Soleil period.
Having had experience with working on a residency show; how does it differ from working on a limited run show where you do six shows in a week and then are gone the next verses working with on a show, for instance under the big top, where you where you are in one city for much longer or even in residency where the show has a permanent home?
Yes, we are in a different city every single week. I really enjoy it and I've always wanted to be on a world tour. I think it's real fun going to all these different cities I've never been to before and to have the opportunity to explore the cities and see what they have to offer. As far as preparation, every single week we will have to reevaluate all the equipment and as far as the show's run, it's about the same.
What drew you to get involved with circus arts, that lead to becoming part of the Cirque family?
I did gymnastics for about fifteen years and I competed four years of division one college gymnastics at the University of Illinois at Chicago. After that I auditioned for a show called Cirque du la Mer in San Diego. I got the show and they taught me how to do Chinese Pools and Flying Trapeze into the water, which then segued me going from gymnastics into more circus arts. I then made an audition tape and sent it to Cirque du Soleil and then I got accepted.
For you, what is the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Cirque du Soleil?
I think of creative costumes, spectacular acrobatics and just a very imaginative production.
Does it get any better than this for you?
No! For me it's really a dream come true and I am so happy to be here.
What do you want the audience to take away from TORUK - The First Flight?
I would hope that they really feel like they are part of the world Pandora. The show is told through a story through acrobatics, live puppets and projections that take you through different environments – like forests, mountains and deserts. I just hope they feel a part of the world and part of the story.
Finally, what is your personal favorite moment in the show?
My favorite part is the Anurai act. The Anurai is a Clan in the show, there are five different Clans in that make up the show. I am the Chief of the Anurai Clan and we do a balancing act and that happens to be my favorite part.
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