Here comes the ‘Rain,’ circus style

Home > Culture > Arts & Design

print dictionary print

Here comes the ‘Rain,’ circus style


Performers play in a downpour during the last scene of “Rain,” a production by Cirque Eloize that runs through July 10 at LG Arts Center in Gangnam, southern Seoul. Photos provided by Credia

The rain outside is not the only water falling these days. “Rain,” a production by Quebec-based contemporary circus troupe Cirque Eloize, fills the stage with water in a 10-minute torrential downpour that takes over the theater at the end of the production. The show started a two-and-a-half-week run at LG Arts Center in southern Seoul last Friday.

Although the show invites the inevitable comparisons to Cirque du Soleil, which was here last month, “Rain” has its own vision. Incorporating elements of theater, dance and music with traditional circus arts, “Rain” is closer to dance or performance art than dizzying acrobatics. Instead, the production is a subtle, more nuanced take on what the circus can be. And there are still plenty of tricks to keep audiences openmouthed.

The show takes place during a rehearsal for a circus show and takes its inspiration from a childhood memory almost everyone shares: frolicking in the rain with friends.

That memory is recreated with unabashed joy at the end of the show as the performers run, leap, splash and slide their way across the stage, getting soaked from head to toe and laughing all the way.


Performers show off their acrobatic skills in “Rain,” which has plenty of tricks to keep audiences openmouthed.

“The rain is about freedom and nostalgia of the childhood. When you were young, you were allowed to go play in the rain, all dressed,” Dominique Mercier, the tour director, said at a press conference last Friday at LG Arts Center. She added that running through the raindrops is an experience almost everyone has had once in their lives.

“Everyone in the audience can make their own stories,” she said.

“Rain” premiered on Broadway in 2005 and has since been presented more than 4,000 times in 31 different countries.

Written by Daniele Finzi Pasca, “Rain” is the second in his “Sky Trilogy,” a series of performances he created that are related to the sky. The series also includes “Nomad” (2002) and “Nebbia” (2007), the latter of which was presented in Korea in 2008.

Finzi Pasca, who also directed Cirque du Soleil’s “Corteo” (2005) and the closing ceremony of the 2006 Torino Winter Olympics, imbues his creations with personal stories, to elevate “entertainment” to “art,” according to the press release.

“Through this performance, I wanted to get people to drag out the memories they have buried somewhere inside them,” it quoted him as saying.

Finzi Pasca is more interested in these memories, including the ones that performers make while rehearsing a show. This is because the premise of the show is based on a rehearsal for an upcoming production, giving the audience a sneak peek into what happens behind the curtain. We see usually silent dancers talking about what they will do once they get on stage and the mistakes that are a normal part of the rehearsal process.

Meanwhile, the songs in the production are rather somber, in contrast to the high energy of everything else. But that seems to underline the idea that no matter how happy the memory, you cannot turn back time and go back to your youth. Another statement the show seems to be making is that although adults have mixed feelings about rain, children are still free to get wet without thinking too much about how they are going to clean up the mess. Kind of like life.

*“Rain” will run through July 10 at LG Arts Center. The performance starts at 8 p.m. on Tuesdays to Fridays, at 2 p.m and 7:30 p.m. on Saturdays and at 2 p.m. on Sundays. Tickets range from 40,000 won to 100,000 won. Go to Yeoksam Station, line No. 2, exit 7. For details, call (02) 2005-0114 or go to

By Lee Sun-min []

한글 관련 기사 [연합]

“폭풍우 속에서 뛰놀던 기억 되살렸죠”

빗속 서커스 ‘레인’ 연출가 이메일 인터뷰

"어릴 때 폭풍우 속에서 뛰놀던 기억이 있어요. 폭풍우에 우리 모두를 내던졌지만 아무도 우리를 꾸짖지는 않았죠. 때로는 자유로움이 폭풍우처럼 우리를 덮치는 것처럼 이번 공연에 자유로움에 대한 의미를 담아냈습니다."

뮤지컬을 접목한 서커스 공연 '레인(RAIN)'이 오는 24일 5년 만에 다시 한국을 찾아온다. 마지막 장면에서 10분 동안 무대 위에 2t 규모의 물을 쏟아붓는 빗속 서커스 장면이 압권이다.

연출가인 대니얼 핀지 파스카(47)는 최근 연합뉴스와 이메일 인터뷰에서 "마지막 소나기 장면을 상상하면서 '레인' 공연을 구상하기 시작했다"면서 "제가 마지막 장면을 만들 때 느꼈던 것처럼 관객들 사이에서도 감동이 폭발하기를 희망한다"며 한국 공연을 앞둔 소감을 전했다.

캐나다 서커스 단체인 '서크 엘루아즈'에 몸담고 있는 파스카는 2005년 '레인'을 초연한 이후 31개국을 돌며 4천회 넘게 공연을 진행하고 있다.

서커스 공연을 준비 중인 청춘 남녀의 애틋한 로맨스를 줄거리로 보사노바 선율에 맞춰 서커스와 무용, 애크러배틱이 어우러진 공연으로 담아낸다.

파스카는 "공연을 올리는 모든 나라마다 큰 감동이 터져나와 매일 밤 마치 처음처럼 무대 위에 올라야 했다"면서 "한국 관객들이 '레인' 공연에 담긴 시적인 언어에 매혹될 것으로 생각한다"고 기대감을 드러냈다.

그는 "어릴 때 폭풍우 속에서 모든 것을 내던진 채 놀았던 기억이 있는데 아무도 우리를 꾸짖지는 않았다"면서 "이러한 자유로움을 무대에 담아내고자 했다"고 연출 의도를 전했다.

'서크 엘루아즈' 소속 11명의 배우가 내한해 6월 24일~7월 10일 LG아트센터에서 공연한다.

티켓은 4만~10만원. ☎02-2005-0114.

Log in to Twitter or Facebook account to connect
with the Korea JoongAng Daily
help-image Social comment?
lock icon

To write comments, please log in to one of the accounts.

Standards Board Policy (0/250자)