Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Good old-fashioned circus entertainment at 'MagiKaria'

I was fortunate to have been invited to the gala performance of Circus Vargas' Magikaria, A Fantastical Magical Experience last Dec. 23. A two-hour showcase of some good old-fashioned circus entertainment, it was loaded with acrobats, music, clowns, illusions, and more.

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Prepping up the contraption for that classic magician's assistant's disappearing and reappearing act.

It was a rather small setup, with several rows of monoblock chairs flanking all three sides of the stage. It may not have been the most ideal seating arrangement but it was well-suited to the show's intimate and interactive premise. Everyone in the audience can very well see what's happening onstage at any given time.

The show opened in a surprisingly low-key manner with just a single performer who immediately surveyed the audience for all sorts of stuff that he could balance on his chin. From the simplest objects like a baseball cap, he sure was able to hold the audience's attention by quickly progressing to bolder things like a shopping cart and a ladder--to much applause of course! A musical number soon followed.

MagiKaria is not one big choreographed script but a medley of different acts reminiscent of circuses of yore. Staying true to such old-school entertainment, you have a showmaster who sings and struts his stuff onstage, showgirls garbed in traditional circus fashion, acrobats of all sorts, and a bit of fire and magic thrown into the mix. It really was quite entertaining, so to speak. And judging from the reactions of the children in attendance, I can safely say that kids will enjoy this.

And oh, there was also this one performer who was quite a hit with the ladies. Oh, the shrieks every time he came out completely shirtless or even in some chest-bearing outfit. Moms, behave.

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The singing showmaster with an acrobat.

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Yes, MagiKaria has got showgirls and clowns.

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I really wonder what his chin's made of. I mean, that's a ladder for Pete's sake!

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As if a ladder wasn't enough, now this! Yes, it's one of those metal barriers they put up at concerts.

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The performer who got the most attention, from the ladies primarily.

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Abs aside, you gotta admire this guy's strength.

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After juggling clubs, he moved on to rings...

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...And then fire.

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However clowns scare you, don't worry; he's no Heath Ledger.

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My favorite performer. I was just awed by how strong and flexible she was.

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Not just mine but she was also My Bibe's girl.

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Oh look, it's a slinky! The hula hoop girl upped the ante by taking in a lot of hoops.

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There was also a bit of drama for show.

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The armor came to life...

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...And revealed Adam Lambert, with abs! Maybe it's the hair but he sure reminds me of Adam from afar.

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Magician's assistant goes inside box.
Magician shoots fiery spears through the box.
Magician opens box to reveal no one's inside.
Magician closes box and voila, assistant reappears! Classic!

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My girl doing another number. I don't know what those are called but they're staples in circuses.

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V for Vendetta sans the mask. He was quite the showman, though.

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Just one of several number where members of the audience were called to participate.

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Absolutely no harness.

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Mr Clown wooing the lady bird--in vain.

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The family that does acrobats together, stays together. They're Pinoys, by the way.

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These guys from Kenya were quite fun to watch. Tough balancing act in a ferociously fast-paced routine.

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Just how is it possible for just one guy to carry four huge men?

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The MagiKaria cast at the end of the show, all clad in white. Applause...

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My Bibe and I enjoying a selfie moment during a 15-minute intermission after the show's first half. We definitely had a good time.

MagiKaria runs from Dec. 25 to Jan. 1 (except Dec. 31) with two to three shows a day at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City. So while Metro Manila cinemas are inundated by MMFF crap at Christmastime, here's some alternative quality--and old-school--entertainment that's perfect for the whole family.

Show Schedules
Dec. 25, 28, 29, 30 and Jan. 1 (1pm | 4pm | 7pm)
Dec. 25 and 27 (4pm | 7pm)

Ticket Prices
VIP (Php 1,990) | Ringside (Php 1,790) | Platinum (Php 1,290) | Gold (Php 990) | Silver (Php 590)

Tickets are now available at SM Tickets, SM Cinema, and Snack Time outlets. For inquiries, call Tropical Productions, Inc. at 519-8984, email info@tpiguam.com, or visit www.circusvargas.com.

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