Cavalia Odysseo Offers Up Thrilling Music City Debut

The massive white 58,000 square-foot big top across from the Gaylord Opryland Hotel was abuzz with excitement Wednesday night (Aug. 30) as Mayor Megan Barry, Senator Bill Frist, artists like Chris Young and Tracy Lawrence, local council members, and thousands of Nashvillians welcomed the anticipated arrival of Cavalia Odysseo’s Music City debut.

The breathtaking theatrical experience featuring 50 horses and an array of equestrians, acrobats, dancers, aerialists, and musicians finally arrived in Nashville after six years of touring the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, making us the 30th city to host the spectacular multi-million dollar production.

Cavalia Artistic Director and Creator Normand Latourelle, (who co-founded Cirque Du Soleil,) welcomed the eager crowd, saying Nashville was by far the warmest and friendliest city they had encountered throughout their extensive travels. Mayor Barry acknowledged the work it took and initiative by several council members to convince the Montreal-based Cavalia company to come to town before the curtain unveiled on the set, which is a marvel in itself.

An 8,400 square-foot screen projects the multitude of scenic backdrops used in the massive production, and the 17,000 square-foot stage is covered in 10,000 tons of a sand/earth mixture providing the horses plenty of room to roam and run. At one point in the production, an actual lake is created by flooding the stage for the four-legged stars to frolic in with their riders. Picturesque waterfalls, serene mountain pastures, and even an African desert are created in an almost 3-D like way to take the audience on the magical journey that is Odysseo.

From the pulse-pounding excitement of trick riders barreling across the stage unmounting and mounting back in the saddle at high speeds to the soul-stirring simple beauty of a pack of Lusitanos roaming free then on command lining up into perfect groups and marching towards the stage, the show offers plenty of jaw-dropping and unforgettable moments. Cirque Du Soleil fans will find plenty of moments to love as well in the ethereal numbers like the life-sized carousel segment, which blends horses and aerialists in an almost dreamlike way.

With visual beauty at every turn, heart-stopping action from the beautiful stallions gathered onstage, live music that accompanies each montage, and talented dancers and acrobats bounding across the stage at every turn, Odysseo is truly a can’t miss during its stop in Music City. Due to high demand, the company has extended its run in Nashville through September 17 before the rolling city of 110 semis transporting the world’s largest touring production heads off to its next destination.












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About the Author

Hollabaugh, a staff writer at MusicRow magazine, has written for publications including American Profile, CMA Close Up, Nashville Arts And Entertainment, The Boot and Country Weekly. She has a Broadcast Journalism and Speech Communication degree from Texas Christian University, (go Horned Frogs), and welcomes your feedback or story ideas at [email protected]

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