Cirque du Soleil - X: The Land of Fantasy
Cirque du Soleil’s lastest show in China offers an immersive experience like no other thanks to VYV technologies
X: The Land of Fantasy premiered August 10, 2019 at the Xintiandi Group Sun Theater in Hangzhou, China.
With a set design that shape-shifts as the story unfolds, a moving audience and a 360- degree immersive experience, X: The Land of Fantasy needed the full range of our systems’ capabilities not just running at max capacity but above it. We delivered.
In Cirque du Soleil’s resident show in China, East truly meets West. X: The Land of Fantasy is the story of an epic quest to reunite two kingdoms: one underground in the West; the other, an aerial kingdom in the East. This split was not only integrated into the extraordinary design of Xintiandi Group Sun Theater, but also into the show’s technical design itself. In this custom-built theater, the audience is seated in two separate platforms that both move and rotate to eventually come face-to- face. This means that our systems have to run two shows at once—without either interfering with the other. Our real-time calibration was there to ensure stunning visuals from any angle as projectors, projection surfaces and audiences moved.
Cirque’s content creation group, 4U2C, also needed fluid playback of stunningly high- resolution video. This was a particular challenge on the Great Wall, a series of nine independently moving projection panels. Even our workhorse PHOTON was working at its already astounding limits to run one video across those giant panels.
Great Wall featured an additional difficulty, as each panel was made up of three sections featuring different materials to meet the needs of the acrobats, sound team, and video projection. Pushing projection on the top third of the panel—perforated to improve sound—was a particular challenge but PHOTON was up to the task.
While Cirque du Soleil has used the ALBION tracking system on touring shows, they took the technology to new heights in The Land of Fantasy. Cirque needed their moving lights to automatically respond to tracking data extracted from the position of performers. It took 32 calibration lines, 82 tracking cameras, and 40 pairs of COPERNICS—and much soft skills collaboration with the performers and wardrobe department—to achieve. The result? Twinkling stars trailing four aerial artists performing synchronized, jaw-dropping acrobatics against the backdrop of a night sky, 30 moving light fixtures following a duo of swift roller skaters to create a ballet of light to match their performance, and artists who seem to appear and disappear out of nowhere.
VYV once again proves that magic is possible—with the right tools.
Writer and Director:
Director of Creation:
Composer and Musical Director:
Carlos Navarrete Fred Caron
Acrobatic Performance Director:
Jérôme Le Bau
August 10, 2019 to present