Cirque du Soleil's AMALUNA Extends New York Engagement Through 5/18

Cirque du Soleil's AMALUNA Extends New York Engagement Through 5/18

With only one more week until the iconic Blue and Yellow Big Top is raised adjacent to Citi Field in Queens, Cirque du Soleil has just announced that Amaluna, written and directed by 2013 Tony Award winner Diane Paulus (Pippin, The Gershwin's Porgy and Bess, Hair) will extend its New York engagement through Sunday, May 18. Performances begin Thursday, March 20; with an official premiere Thursday, March 27.

A convoy of 65 trucks is currently making its way across the countryside from Northern California to New York. The Amaluna crew will begin unpacking the 2,000 tons of equipment next week in preparation for the show's New York premiere. Performances are now on sale until May 18 and audiences can visit for tickets and details.

Amaluna invites the audience to a mysterious island governed by Goddesses and guided by the cycles of the moon. Their queen, Prospera, directs her daughter's coming-of-age ceremony in a rite that honors femininity, renewal, rebirth and balance which marks the passing of these insights and values from one generation to the next.

In the wake of a storm caused by Prospera, a group of young men lands on the island, triggering an epic, emotional story of love between Prospera's daughter and a brave young suitor. But theirs is a love that will be put to the test. The couple must face numerous demanding trials and overcome daunting setbacks before they can achieve mutual trust, faith and harmony.

Amaluna is a fusion of the words ama, which refers to "mother" in many languages, and luna, which means "moon"; a symbol of femininity that evokes both the mother-daughter relationship and the idea of goddess and protector of the planet. Amaluna is also the name of the mysterious island where this magical story unfolds.

For the first time in Cirque du Soleil's history, Amaluna features a cast that comprises 70% women, with a 100% female band. "Amaluna is a tribute to the work and voice of women", explains Director of Creation Fernand Rainville. "The show is a reflection on balance from a women's perspective", he adds. Director Diane Paulus, winner of a 2013 Tony Award (Pippin) says: "I didn't want to build a 'women's agenda' show. I wanted to create a show with women at the center of it, something that had a hidden story that featured women as the heroines." Paulus drew from a series of classical influences when creating the concept of the show; including tales from Greek and Norse mythology, Mozart's The Magic Flute and Shakespeare's The Tempest.

Diane Paulus serves as the Artistic Director of the American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.) at Harvard University and is the 2013 recipient of the Tony Award for Best Director of a Musical. Diane's recent accomplishments on Broadway includes A.R.T.'s 2013 Tony Award-winning revival of Pippin, A.R.T.'s 2012 Tony Award-winning revival of The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess and The Public Theater's 2009 Tony winning revival of HAIR. Her recent work with A.R.T. includes The Donkey Show, a disco adaptation of A Midsummer Night's Dream; Prometheus Bound, a new musical inspired by Aeschylus's ancient Greek tragedy, written by Tony Award-winner Steven Sater (Spring Awakening) with music composed by Grammy Award-winner Serj Tankian; Tod Machover's Death and the Powers: The Robots' Opera, finalist for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in Music; Best of Both Worlds and Johnny Baseball. As an opera director, Diane's credits include The Magic Flute, Il mondo della luna, Don Giovanni, Le nozze di Figaro, and the Monteverdi trilogy L'incoronazione di Poppea, Il ritorno d¹Ulisse in patria and Orfeo. Other work includes Kiss Me, Kate (Glimmerglass Opera) and Lost Highway (ENO co-production with the Young Vic). Diane is a Professor of the Practice in Theater in Harvard University's English Department and was one of Boston Magazine's 50 Most Powerful Bostonians in 2012. She was awarded the 2012 Founders Award for Excellence in Directing from the Drama League and is the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate from Boston Conservatory. This is Diane Paulus's first collaboration with Cirque du Soleil.

Amaluna is Cirque du Soleil's 32nd production. From humble beginnings with a group of 20 street performers in 1984, Cirque du Soleil is a major Québec-based organization providing high-quality artistic entertainment around the globe. The company has over 4,000 employees, including more than 1,300 artists, from over 50 different countries. Cirque du Soleil has brought delight to more than 100 million spectators, in more than 300 cities in over 40 countries. Cirque du Soleil will celebrate its 30th Anniversary in 2014.

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