Monday, July 22, 2013

Phare, the Cambodian circus, in Siem Reap, Cambodia

I had read so many positive reviews of Phare that we had booked our tickets upfront, online. The show was scheduled at 7.30 p.m., a late hour for my younger ones. We hoped that the long nap taken in the bus to Siem Reap would help them through the evening (and it did).

In the evening, we take a long walk to Phare and the kids grow impatient. We arrive early, sit on the front row, impatience rises. 7.30 sharp, blackout. The lights get on again, the artists are on stage. Dressed in black, with tattoos on their skins. So close we can hear them breathe. They start dancing acrobatic dances to the tunes of Khmer instruments. They juggle, play with fire. My son has a movement of fear. They scream in Khmer, fight with long bamboo sticks. The story is about a young man, a newcomer to the village who is rejected by villagers. Angels protect and save him. It comes to a peaceful end where all play and dance together. The show is lively and intense. My youngest one is fascinated. My 6-years old asks me about details of the story. I didn't get them all but it was scenic and powerful. Impressive too, with all those acrobatic moves performed so close to us.

When the show ends, we're invited to come on stage and greet the artists. We take a few pictures with them but the children are exhausted. We quickly wave goodbye and leave. It's only the next day that the children will talk about the experience but they loved it.

More about the "Eclipse" show and the Cambodian circus: