adventures · family

Cirque du Soleil – TOTEM

I remember watching my very first Cirque du Soleil show a million years ago. Ok, that is a bit of a stretch but it has been so long, I cannot even remember which show it was (Saltimbanco? Or was it Quidam?). Anyway, that is not important.

A good 10 years later, the circus is back in town! Cirque du Soleil’s Totem opened on 28 October 2015 and we were very lucky to be given 2 tickets to catch the opening show. I intended to leave the child at home and have a date night with the boy but he quipped that we should take Elliott along.


Okay can.

I was really apprehensive because this is a 2 hour and 25 minute show and the longest show Elliott has been to are the kids-friendly ones that lasted a grand total of 45 minutes. Plus, Totem was going to start at 8pm. Gulp.


As it turns out, my child surprised me once again. Not only did he survive the entire show, he remained quiet and transfixed throughout. No fuss at all. OMG HOW PROUD WAS I OF HIM! He was busy pointing out the creatures on stage (“monkey!”) and would watch with wide-eyed wonder at the performances. I have to say that we were really lucky to be watching from the front row so he had an unblocked view to the action from the comfort of lying on Mummy. Oh I have to add that I did give him a bottle of milk after the intermission to ensure continued good behaviour.


If you have seen other Cirque du Soleil shows and is expecting high-flying trapeze and death-defying stunts throughout the show, Totem is not it. This is not to say that it was not exciting – it was an entertaining show with a good mix of comedy by Valentino (an arrogant and loud tourist with a strong Italian accent) and the Clown Fisherman…


…and heart-stopping action in the various acts. I particularly enjoyed the Unicycles and Bowls act where these ladies balanced bowls on their heads WHILE CYCLING and catching them on their heads. I can barely balance 3 bowls on my 2 hands on a firm ground so yeah. It was pretty heart-stopping.


The other act that I found myself holding my breath for were this pair on roller skates on a 1.8 meter platform spinning so fast, I got giddy watching them. And because we were so close to the stage, I swear I could feel the wind from their high speed spinning.


Another act that I enjoyed was the ring trio because 2 topless men with taut hot muscles came out and twirled around on aerial rings. What’s there not to like?! I was so inspired, I turned to my companions and said: I am so going to start working out..TOMORROW! Well. That has remained….a thought. You’d have to watch it to know what I mean. They were all sinewy muscles with nary an ounce of fats on their bodies.

If you are keen to catch the circus, you may like to know that because there weren’t that many aerial displays, sitting in the first few rows will be ok. The best spots to catch it is, of course, the seats in Cat 1 and 2 which are located in the centre of the stage.


Our seats were at the first row of Cat 4 (B Reserve – the purple blocks) and it was good because it was near Door 8 which meant that if Elliott decided to scream the house down, I could beat a hasty retreat.


Also, the stage expanded to the back and from where we sat, you can see the opening parts of the act coming out from the back of the stage (on your right). The lights and music captivated Elliott and he would crane his neck to see what was happening.

I have to mention that the seats we were on were nothing more than tiny foldable chairs and were really close to one another. I’m not sure if this is the same for the VIP categories (probably not) so this is something to take into consideration. Leave your bulky bags at home because there won’t be much space to leave them.

Oh oh and please note: One bottle of mineral water costs $6 inside the tent so drink up before you enter! 🙂 There are toilets outside the tent but there were long queues at the interval so that is something to take note of too. And yes, it is an air-conditioned tent. I was expecting it to be cold and brought a cardigan but did not have to use it at the full-house show. If you are taking kids along, you may want to dress them a little warmer.


It made for a lovely evening out with some of my favourite people.

Totem runs at the Big Top (beside MBS!) from 28 October till 6 December 2015. Tickets from Sistic.

All images of the show from the official site. Seating layout from

Disclaimer: miss ene was given a pair of tickets to Totem (thank you, Gushcloud!) All opinions are my own.


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