On Monday and Tuesday, Jan. 16 and 17, the New Shanghai Circus will return to Maui Arts & Cultural Center (MACC) to perform three beautifully orchestrated shows in the Castle Theater.
During the Han Dynasty two millennia ago, Chinese audiences witnessed the first acrobats, magicians and jugglers. Acrobatics, which showcase amazing skills of strength and balance, developed out of the lunar New Year village harvest celebrations. Chinese farmers and craftsmen, having relatively little to do over the long winter, spent their time improving their positions on the social ladder by becoming acrobats.
They practiced the art form with just about anything they could find around their homes--cups, saucers, tables, chairs, plates--even their own bodies, with which they built human walls and pyramids. Performers passed their skills down through the generations, and great acrobatic families of China entertained everyone from city rulers to village people.
The New Shanghai Circus will return to the Maui Arts & Cultural Center on Monday and Tuesday, Jan. 16 and 17, to perform three beautifully orchestrated shows in the Castle Theater.
Building on these traditional performances, artists of today's New Shanghai Circus add layers of complexity and daring with new techniques and spectacular stunts, thrilling audiences around the globe.
Kids of all ages, from preschool to senior citizen, will enjoy the circus performers as they dive through hoops, balance on each other's shoulders and legs on a unicycle, or spin dozens of plates on the ends of bamboo. Contortionists will enthrall as they bend and twist with graceful movement to form living sculptures.
Bring the whole family! Tickets are $12, $20 and $26, plus applicable fees. A Saigon Cafe will cater pre-show dining.
The MACC premieres a new series on Sunday, Jan. 15: Starry Night Cinema in association with Maui Film Festival. This free and fun-filled family event features films projected on a giant screen in Yokouchi Pavilion. Patrons are invited to bring a blanket or beach chair to relax on the A&B Amphitheater lawn and enjoy casual dining and activities under the starry night sky.
The first film is the computer-animated comedy, "Surf's Up," by Sony Pictures. Jack Fisher and his surf-rock band SoundWave will play from 5 p.m. when gates open until the movie starts at 6:30 p.m. Pre-show dining will be catered by Rodeo General Store.
Call the MACC at 242-SHOW (7469) or visit MauiArts.org.