Timber wins standing ovation for Iqaluit show
“They were able to do unbelievable things”
Timber, the lumberjack-themed circus show created by Artcirq and Quebec’s Cirque Alfonse, won a standing ovation during the Alianait festival for a production crammed with acrobatics, music and singing after they performed for a full house at the Nakasuk School gym in Iqaluit on the evening of June 30.
The 10-person cast, including four male members of Artcirq dressed in plaid, suspenders, beards and at one point, long underwear, displayed talent in many areas.
This included clog-dancing, axe-throwing, jumping over a long two-man saw, juggling, back-flips, somersaults, and spinning while hanging from the ceiling.
They also played guitar, fiddle, bongos and the banjo to accompany their French-language songs.
Set in a lumber camp, the cast acted out scenes of log-rolling, then ended up juggled axes, with the audience cheering every time they completed each feat.
There was an appearance by a performer clad in a polar bear suit who walked across a stage that was surrounded by curious kids keen on getting as close as possible to the show.
Both troupes performed on a wooden see-saw, with some cast members doing intricate back flips close to the edge of the stage.
At one point, one of the lumberjack acrobats balanced another performer on his head.
“They were able to do unbelievable things with very few things, the logs, the wood that is probably taken here from Iqaluit, besides the swing, everything was done very simply and I think it made the show even more creative,” audience member Marc Noreau said.
The Alianait festival last featured a circus performance in 2007, but it has always been a popular part of the event.
The cast from Quebec created Timber there, but travelled to Igloolik to meet the members of Artcirq to put together a northernized version of the production.
Artcirq began 10 years ago as a suicide-prevention project organized by Guillaume Saladin, who performed in the show.