Cirque du Soleil Thursday afternoon was preparing for opening night.
Actors were loosening up, jumping on the trampoline, lifting weights and doing run-throughs to get ready at the Rio Rancho Events Center for the insect-themed show “Ovo.”
Janie Mallet, part of the tour management team, said the group rolled into town Wednesday with 20 semi-trucks of equipment.
“We’re self-sufficient in a lot of ways,” she said. “If it’s not attached to the building, we carry it with us.”
The trucks haul such things as washing machines, training equipment, athletic equipment, costumes, lighting, sound and video equipment, and the stage, among other things.
“We travel with a lot of material,” Mallet said. “We kind of take over.”
Backstage, there’s the massive aerial practice equipment that looks like scaffolding rising up toward the roof, called the Jungle Gym, where aerialists practice their parts flying through the air. There are thick mats to protect the aerialists in the event of an accident.
A trampoline sits next to the Jungle Gym.
“We have a lot of aerials in the show,” Mallet said.
There are areas for quick-changes, cricket-leg costumes hanging on a rack, an area for the band that plays live for the performance, even areas for the artists to put on makeup as part of their costumes , a line of washing machines so artists’ costumes can be cleaned between shows and workout equipment.
The show, which runs through Sunday, unveils the hidden world of insects in a colorful splash of energy. Insects crawl, flutter, fight and court each other in the energetic explosion.
But today, it was about preparation.
“By tonight,” Mallet said, “we will have everything we need to have the show done.”