More than 30 artists become Christmas creations, transforming themselves into toy soldiers, peppermint-clad dancers and gingerbread giants.
They flip through the air, dance through the lights and suspend over the crowd to create a magic that can only be identified with the Holidaze.
“This is the biggest production that we have ever put out,” said Neil Goldberg, the director of Cirque Dreams Holidaze.
The holiday production is part of the Broadway in Augusta series and begins at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 11, at Bell Auditorium. Tickets are $45, $50 and $55 from BroadwayInAugustaGA.com.
Goldberg has been working his magic with shows like that of Cirque Dreams Holidaze, Cirque Dreams Rocks and Cirque Dreams Broadway for more than 20 years. The biggest magic of all has been making such a large production affordable for just about every family.
“I think Augusta is a perfect example,” Goldberg said. “We really were designing shows for stages to take into cities all across the country. Not everyone has the opportunity to go to New York to see a Broadway show or go to Vegas. For us to bring a show of this caliber with 31 artists, that was really our goal, affordable quality live family entertainment.”
“That is why Holidaze is in its fourth season,” he added. “We have three tours of the exact same show going throughout the country simultaneously.”
Putting on the production means a lot of work and a great deal of know-how, especially when it comes to working with so many artists who come from 15 countries. Every year presents a different challenge.
“The tour that we’re bringing to Augusta is the show that we had at the Kennedy Center two years ago,” Goldberg said.
“We have a template for it, but it changes a little bit every year based on the style of the artists we choose to put in. It’s really not any more challenging than usual, you know, 15 different languages and cultural differences. It is as much of a show that goes on behind the scenes and behind the stage as there is with what the audience sees up on the stage.”
The two-hour production includes roller-skating performers, jugglers, a gingerbread giant that is more than 15 feet tall, acrobatic cookies and toy soldiers marching on chains and thin wires across the stage.
There will even be some elves who also happen to be competitive jump-ropers.
“And one by one they tell their story,” Goldberg said. “It’s really action-packed. Everything again is really transformed into a theme that makes it a little bit less about what the artists are doing and a little more about a celebration of the holiday season.”