Cirque Eloize iD is in Chicago at the Cadillac Palace Theatre for a limited run through May 8.
The show is Cirque du Soleil meets “In the Heights”; a grittier, more urban version of the well-known, dreamy shows filled with acrobats and trapeze artists.
The show opens in a cityscape filled with blaring horns and traffic noises. Pedestrians soon give way to acrobats, contortionists and jump-rope artists. The first act moves quickly through a city’s night and early morning hours, but thankfully doesn’t try to impose a plot on the acts. It simply grounds them in a place and time.
The costumes and scenery are also funky, city cool. No trailing feathers or whimsical umbrellas. Eloize iD outfits its gymnasts and hip-hop dancers in jeggings and leather coats.
The second act loses some of this focus as the city scene gives way to a more generic place and sound. Some oft-used acts (the girl who swings from ribbons of fabric and the suspended hoop) slow the fun and pace. If you’ve seen a lot of Cirque du Soleil shows, this section will have a been-there, done-that feel, as Cirque du Soleil is a partner in Cirque Eloize.
All picks up for the final act of crazy trampoline acrobats diving off skyscrapers with lighting effects borrowed straight from a video game. It’s energizing and makes you want to rush the stage to try out that trampoline!
Go see this show if you have 8-12 year olds who are too big for the circus, but still want to be wowed by amazing feats. Skip it if your family has been to every Cirque du Soleil show that’s come through town. There aren’t enough new “wow” acts to hold everyone’s interest.
Cirque Eloize iD is in town April 30 and May 1, 6, 7 and 8. For show times and tickets, visit broadwayinchicago.com.