Read the text
through with your teacher to generally understand.
Speak about the text and ask about any new words etc.,
Play taboo on each paragraph.
The words marked like this
may be the most interesting.
Look at each question and locate line numbers in the text
that relate to each question.
Choose your answer carefully.
The incorrect answers may be wrong for different reasons.
There is no direct reference to this statement in the text.
(They may even be true but we can only guess)
Cirque du Soleil - A Little Circus Can Make it Big
Hurry! Hurry! Hurry! Step right up to
Cirque du Soleil, the greatest...well, one of the greatest shows
on earth. You'll thrill to the sight of
a single circus ring that has never been marked with
of a wild beast..
You won't see packs of elephants stand on their heads, but you will be
by the multiple talents of performers who play clowns and then transform themselves
trapeze artists and
You won't see an alligator
wrestle with the jaws of
death, but you will be treated to the
of two tango dancers
concluding their romance with an amazing hand-balancing
act. And you'll
as a tightrope walker strides
across the wire while playing a
theme on the oboe.
Easily as compelling, if not more so,
is the body-bending act by contortionist
Elena Lev of Russia (Cirque du Soleil has a
for what could be seen as
physical extremism), who
a batch of golden metal hoops
around herself. Other acts of
a bare-chested aerialist
who twirls a giant
cube in mid-air,
and Andrei Lev's Flying High Bar Act, seven Russians who do their
dangerously close to the top
of the circus' blue and gold tent.
At the heart of the Cirque du Soleil is the desire
to combine acrobatics with refined
acting perfectly designed everything.
music, dramatic lighting,
costumes, strange images
and mystical themes,
into a spellbinding whole,
Cirque du Soleil's productions
are entertainments without comparison
which have a charm all of their own.
This relatively new troupe
has captured the imagination of
audiences around the world by
pomp with up-close,
unusual thrills and surprises.
tiny 1, 754-seat tent,
one lone Cirque
just a few feet
above the heads of spectators,
without a net.
"Because you're so close,"
said one satisfied customer,
Sandy Willis, 21,
"you can see their facial
and their muscles
You feel like you're part of the performance.
Troupe member Debra Brown sees other
reasons for the show's success:
"usually a circus has spectacle
but no heart,
or intellect but no risk.
What's exciting about this one
is that it has a balance."
Brown, 33, a former
for the Canadian Olympic gymnastics team,
carefully plans every move in the ring.
"When you think of dance, you think of people on two feet,"
she says, "but my
explores four feet because of the way acrobats
use their hands."
and director, Guy Laliberte,
a college dropout
whose mother is
and whose father is
of an aluminium company,
was once just another
musician, fire-breather, stilt-walker.
in Baie Saint Paul,
an artists colony 55 miles
northeast of Quebec City where
street performers congregate
"I came up with our name,'
, "when I was looking
in a dictionary of symbols and
saw 'soleil, sun.'
It means youth, power, freshness.
Everything was there.
I just knew at that moment that we would be a success."
Magical Mystery Tour
The Cirque du Soleil is a different kind of circus because:
of the number of different acts
the animals which perform are treated humanely
of how dangerous the acts are.
there are only human performers who often have more than one skill
The Cirque du Soleil includes an act where someone:
spins a large ball
throws knives whilst blindfolded
plays music whilst on the trapeze
manipulates her body in unbelievable ways
The Cirque du Soleil has made a big impact partly because:
the audience gets to know some members of the circus personally
of the colours of their costumes
they involve members of the audience in the acts
of the proximity of the audience to the acts
Debora Brown believes
The Cirque is more exciting than other circuses
the essence of the Cirque is planning
she has more scope for creativity than a normal choreographer
her background as an Olympic coach is essential in her present work
always knew he would end up in a circus
got a poor college degree
initially was a fairly typical circus performer
seems to owe his success to his parents
He chose the name for the circus because
he associated the sun with success
it had all the characteristics symbolised by the sun
he only wanted young people as performers
of a previous experience at an artists colony
The reviewers attitude to the Cirque du Soleil is
essentially positive with one or two minor criticisms
largely neutral and objective
Which word from paragraph 2 most closely relates to gasp and awestruck
What is the difference between a tame animal and a trained animal?
a short bar hanging high up in the air from two ropes,
which acrobats use to perform special swinging movements A glamorous couple performed on the flying trapeze.
trapeze artists acrobat noun
a person who entertains people by doing difficult and skilful physical things,
such as walking along a high wire
verb ( ENTERTAIN ) [I or T] to throw several objects up into the air,
and then catch and throw them up repeatedly so that one or more stays in the air,
usually in order to entertain people We all watched in amazement as he juggled with three flaming torches.
mace noun ( ROD ) /me??s / n
[C] a decorated rod that is carried by or put in front of particular public officials
as a symbol of their authority
wild - tame
verb /we??l / v [I or T]
mainly disapproving to make a long, high cry,
usually because of pain or sadness The women gathered around the coffin and began to wail,
as was the custom in the region.
[+ speech] "My finger hurts, " wailed the child.
[I] informal to complain loudly or strongly
[+ that] Business people wailed that their trade would be ruined.
adjective / adj [before noun]
travelling from one place to another, usually to work for a short period an itinerant journalist/labourer/preacher
noun /st@fishlts / n [C usually plural]
one of a set of long pieces of wood or metal
used to support a building so that it is above the ground or above water The houses are built on stilts to protect them from the annual floods.
one of two long pieces of wood with supports
for the feet which allow you to stand and walk high above the ground
to walk on stilts
honed his skills - sharpened his skills
/ n [u] UK (US aluminum)
a light metallic element which is silver in colour and used especially for
making cooking equipment and aircraft parts an aluminium saucepan
Cover the fish with aluminium foil and cook over a low heat.
We take all our aluminium cans for recycling.
sharpen verb ( ABLE TO CUT )
to make something sharp or sharper My pencil is blunt - I'll have to sharpen it.
figurative The company is cutting production costs in an attempt
to sharpen its competitive edge (= in order to improve how competitive it is).
hone verb ( MAKE SHARP )
v [T] to sharpen an object The bone had been honed to a point.
Just like its title,
Zumanity brings with it a world of
This performance is much more than
your average Cirque du Soleil show which is usually bright,
and family friendly.
Zumanity will open your eyes to a
side of human culture that is normally suppressed and unexplored.
Zumanity tackles this delicate subject matter
unlike most Cirque du Soleil shows,
Zumanity is set in an
stage. Zumanity also steps away from the circus-like performance that you might
expect and takes on the feel of a
The performers, who have a range of characteristics, are
and at times even a bit strange.
The concept behind Zumanity focuses our attention on our
and ways in which humans may have feelings similar to
wild creatures which are usually kept hidden away in our civilised societies.
Zumanity, like all other
Cirque du Soleil shows, displays amazing physical skill.
One act, entitled "Waterbowl" is a beautiful display of two women swimming simultaneously
in a round tank.
They twist and turn their bodies,
weaving in and out of each other like two eels trapped in a tiny fishbowl.
Intensity builds until the final act,
when characters appear from all parts of the theater to
, and tease the audience towards the climax of the act.
You will be left with the feeling that
you are not unlike these creatures from Zumanity.