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Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2Manila, Philippines--Less of the acrobatics, more of the storytelling is what the renowned circus troupe Cirque du Soleil decided to offer in its 37th production, "Toruk: The First Flight," where about 15,000 audience members at the SM Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena attended the show's opening night last Friday, June 23.

Based on James Cameron's epic fiction movie "Avatar" (2009), "Toruk" predates the film by thousands of years, and follows three brave Na'vis, best friends Ralu and Entu, and female warrior Tsyal, on their quest to collect the tribal talisman from each of the Na'vi ethnic groups. These amulets allow them to tame the great firebird called Toruk and prevent the catastrophic fate awaiting the Na'vis--extraterrestrial humanoids that inhabit the Polyphemus' fifth moon, the Pandora.

Employing highly-complex video mapping projections, "Toruk" simulates the intricate imaginary world of the Na'vis with palpitating lights in different colors and a massive stage that seems to have a robust life of its own. Marred by a "thin-to-I've seen that before" plot (Think "The Lion King," "Warhorse," or, even, "The Hobbit: The Desolation of the Smaug"), this Cirque du Soleil extravaganza works best when the acrobatic stunts are on display, which it sadly downplayed.

Since the Fall of 2015, "Toruk" has traveled across Canada, the United States, and Mexico. This run in Manila is the show's Asian premiere.

Michael Lemieux and Victor Pilon are the show writers and directors; Neilson Vignola, director of creation; Carl Fillion, set and props designer; Kym Barret, costume and makeup designer; Tuan Le and Tan Loc, choreographers; Bob & Bill, composers and musical directors; Jacques Boucher, sound designer; Alain Lortie, lighting designer; Patrick Martel, puppet designer; Germain Guillenot, acrobatic performance designer, and Pierre Masse, rigging and acrobatic equipment designer.

Tickets, starting at P1,500 only, are still available at www.cirquedusoleil.com/toruk and www.smtickets.com/.

You have until this Sunday, July 2, to catch the show at SM MOA Arena, Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City.

Below's inside opening night photos are c/o Ulysses Manuel.

high res photos

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
TORUK by Cirque du Soleil plays SM MOA Arena until July 2.

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
TORUK by Cirque du Soleil plays SM MOA Arena until July 2.

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
TORUK by Cirque du Soleil plays SM MOA Arena until July 2.

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
TORUK by Cirque du Soleil plays SM MOA Arena until July 2.

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Christine Babao

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Raymond, Mia Lauchengco and kids

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Nina Corpuz and kids

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Pinky Amador, Viktoria

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Barredo-Eckstein family

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Joaquin Valdes

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Chino Veguillas, Anna Yulo, Tim Yap, Pepper Teehankee

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Cherie Gil

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Luna Inocian, Chino Veguillas

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
TORUK by Cirque du Soleil plays SM MOA Arena until July 2.

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
TORUK by Cirque du Soleil plays SM MOA Arena until July 2.

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
TORUK by Cirque du Soleil plays SM MOA Arena until July 2.

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Marc Nelson, Franco Laurel, Rovilson Fernandez

Photo Coverage: TORUK by Cirque Du Soleil Plays SM MOA Arena Until July 2
Christine Babao and family

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