Cirque du Soleil is bringing acrobatics on ice to Edmonton in 2025

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Already astonishing Cirque du Soleil performers will be upping the acrobatic ante by strapping blades to their feet to do stunts on ice at Edmonton’s Rogers Place next February.

Crystal — Cirque’s only show on ice — is about a teenage girl who doesn’t fit in on a whimsical, introspective journey.

“She goes to an upside-down world where she encounters different characters who take her through a self-discovery journey, and well, without spoiling anything, she comes back and reconnects with her family and friends,” Roberto Larroude, senior publicist for Crystal, recently told Postmedia from Rio de Janeiro, where the show is touring.

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“It’s a beautiful moment. The finale — it gives goosebumps every time I see it.”

The ice element presents an extra danger for the 45 performers — 20 skaters and 25 acrobats — as they backflip on skates, swing from trapezes and balance on precariously stacked chairs, Larroude said.

It’s the first Cirque production that uses real snow, with the team making around 300 snowballs each week.

“It combines the beautiful gliding on the ice with the famous acrobatics from Cirque du Soleil,” Larroude said. “It’s sharp blades on their feet. The skaters had to learn a few acrobatic disciplines, and the acrobats had to learn how to skate.”

Crystal by Cirque du Soleil is scheduled to hit Edmonton in 2025. Photo by Olivier Brajon /Cirque du Soleil

Artists wear three to four costumes per show, Larroude said, adding that 28 projectors are aimed at the gleaming white ice surface.

“We have projectors that map the ice with images that interact with the skaters. They wear little infrared sensors on their costumes, so when they skate, they change the projections,” he said, adding spotlights operate in the same automated fashion.

Crystal, which premiered in 2017 and was last in Edmonton in 2019, is for all ages.

“For the full, whole family, and it’s a very relatable story. Everybody has gone through this time in life where you’re not fitting in at home or at school,” he said.

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