• ‘Corteo' opens in Charlotte as Cirque du Soleil returns to NC

    By: Melissa Key, Charlotte Business Journal

    Updated:

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Cirque du Soleil has returned to the Queen City after a five-year hiatus.

    Corteo, an arena show currently on tour through North American cities, is in Charlotte this week for seven performances, from Wednesday to Sunday at the Spectrum Center in uptown. Corteo premiered in April 2005 as one of Cirque’s big top shows in Montreal, Canada.

    [RELATED: Cirque du Soleil performer dies after fall during Tampa show]

    This week’s visit by the Canadian theatrical company marks the first time the circus has performed in Charlotte in five years, with 2013’s tour of Quidam having been Cirque’s most recent stop here. Other touring Cirque shows, OVO and Toruk, were scheduled to play in North Carolina in 2016 but were ultimately canceled amid controversy surrounding the state’s House Bill 2, which Cirque du Soleil said at the time was an “important regression to ensuring human rights for all.”

    Corteo tells the story of a clown dreaming about his own funeral — but the show is not meant to be sad, said Maxwell Batista, a publicist at Cirque du Soleil. Rather, he said, Corteo is meant to be a celebration of life, as the clown recalls happy moments in his life and people that he’s met, represented through traditional circus acts as well as a few modern additions, including an acrobatic performance on a suspended pole.

    Read more and see behind-the-scenes photos here.

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