The winter-themed, acrobat-filled spectacle had its world premiere last year at MSG's WaMu, at 34th Street and Eighth Avenue. Annual return visits are planned. This season's run officially opens on Nov. 14, after previews.
In recent years the WaMu venue found holiday-season success with productions of A Christmas Carol, Peter Pan and Annie.
Cirque du Soleil, MSG Entertainment and BASE Entertainment are producing Wintuk, which was designed exclusively for the WaMu Theater at Madison Square Garden — billed as Cirque du Soleil's first permanent address in New York for a show presented outside the Big Top.
Wintuk was the first Cirque du Soleil show created specifically for a family audience, and the first Cirque du Soleil production to be built around a specific premise: the theme of winter.
According to MSG, "Wintuk is an enchanting winter tale about a boy named Wintuk and his quest to find snow and adventure. Wintuk lives in a city where the arrival of winter has brought long shadows and intense cold — but no snow! He interacts with an extraordinary cast of high-energy urban street characters, including acrobats, dancers and talking marionettes. But when the snow does not arrive, he embarks on a quest with three companions — a female shaman who's lost in the city, a shy man destined to discover his courage, and the shadow of a young girl — to find the snow and bring it back to where it belongs." The adventurers journey to an imaginary Arctic — a world without sunlight — "where they encounter the rich culture of the People of the North and extraordinary giant characters made of ice." When at last the sun returns, "they fly home on the wings of a giant crane and generate a swirling snowstorm."
New to Wintuk this year is "Power Track," a trampoline act that requires precision acrobatics and split-second timing. "Cirque du Soleil will take advantage of the elaborate set design and intricate staging as multiple performers burst with energy and spring into action," according to production notes. "The fast paced choreography, feverish energy, and daring feats encompassed in this new number is sure to be a show-stopper."
Also new to this year's show are fantastical puppets, designed by Tony and Emmy award-winning puppet designer Michael Curry, who is also the puppet designer of Broadway's The Lion King as well as Cirque du Soleil's KÀ, and Love.
A cast of 50 performers "weaves thrilling circus arts, breathtaking theatrical effects and memorable songs into a meaningful seasonal story that resonates with the whole family."
Richard Blackburn directs. Fernand Rainville is director of creation.
For Wintuk tickets visit www.cirquedusoleil.com, www.wamuatmsg.com or call Ticketmaster at (212) 307-1000.
From a group of 20 street performers at its beginnings in 1984, Cirque du Soleil is now a major Quebec-based entertainment organization with over 3,500 employees from over 40 different countries, including 900 artists.
Cirque du Soleil's work has been seen by 60 million spectators in over 100 cities on four continents. In 2007, Cirque du Soleil will present 14 shows simultaneously throughout the world. The company has received such prestigious awards as the Emmy, Drama Desk, Bambi, ACE, Gémeaux, Félix, and Rose d'Or de Montreux. Cirque du Soleil International Headquarters are in Montreal, Canada.
For more information about Cirque du Soleil, visit www.cirquedusoleil.com.