Denise's Corner

La Nouba by Cirque Du Soleil Adds New Acts to Already Impressive Show: Aerial Bamboo and B-Boys

Hi everyone!

One of my favorite experiences at Walt Disney World over the past nearly 20 years has been La Nouba by Cirque du Soleil. I’ve averaged a viewing every 2-3 years since it first opened in December 1998, and have had the pleasure of selling it in the past both as a Disney Reservation Center Cast Member and as a travel agent. The La Nouba “tent” is located at the Disney Springs (formerly Downtown Disney) West Side, the first permanent freestanding structure built by Cirque du Soleil. We were delighted to be invited to check out some of the new additions to this long-running show. In recent time, La Nouba has made changes to about 30 percent of its performances, giving a fresh update but keeping many favorite acts. The show also retains the same feel to it that has made it a crowd pleaser for so long.

Cirque du Soleil La Nouba is in this large building that resembles a tent, next to House of Blues and DisneyQuest on the Disney Springs West Side. There is parking behind the building, but also at the parking garage that is about a 5 minute walk away.

The two newest acts can’t be more different from each other. The first is a married couple from Moscow presenting as Aerial Bamboo, and the second is a trio of talented performers called the B-Boys.

It was quite surreal to be in this building I’ve been in many times, but without a performance going on. The costumes for Aerial Bamboo were displayed.

Before talking about the newest acts, we did have a chance to enjoy the comic antics of The Pablos, a clown act that is still relatively new (debuting in 2014). They bring their interactive humor to the audience. One aspect of La Nouba that has never changed is the recommendation that guests should arrive a little early for the pre-show, I suggest  sitting at least 20 minutes before the show starts.

Alexander and Ekaterina Abramov met while performing circus acts separately over 15 years ago. It didn’t take long for them to blend their personal and professional lives together, learning aerial bamboo in 2004. While bamboo is no longer used (the pole is now made of stainless steel), the performance is beautiful and nail-biting at the same time. Alexander holds Ekaterina while in the air, including by his teeth at one point. It is incredible to see in person! This is the first time that the couple have even visited the United States, and Aerial Bamboo is now one of my favorite acts in the show.

Courtesy of La Nouba

The B-Boys are Josh Ortiz (“Incredible Josh”), Jean Carlos Lloret (“Bebo”), and Dmytro Li (“Flying Buddha”) performing together as the B-Boys. B-Boying was known better as breakdancing for a while, but dates back to the 1970s as a performance art. Ortiz (“Incredible Josh”) actually worked entertainment at theme parks including Walt Disney World about 10 years ago, eventually left and is now back here with La Nouba. Lloret (“Bebo”) has an audition video for “So You Think You Can Dance” that has more than 1 million YouTube views. Lloret and Ortiz were on the set of Step Up 4 together, but the trio had never performed together before La Nouba.  Li (“Flying Buddha”) is from the Ukraine, where he found his passion for b-boying. This is also the first time that La Nouba has dedicated an entire act to b-boying.

Courtesy of La Nouba

We had the chance to see the B-Boys share their craft up-close, it is a very high energy part of the show.

We spoke with artistic director Daniel Ross about refreshing the show, which has changed some over the years, but not to the extent of the last couple of years. Considering it is closing in on 20 years, it was good to have some new life in La Nouba. Ross felt that now they knew the partnership with Disney was continuing, it was time to update the show.

What we learned that I found very interesting about La Nouba is that some of the original performers are still here! Because performers often are a little younger, I didn’t expect that. One of the acts, the Diabolos, are a fan favorite (and one of my favorites), the young Diablos girls only spend a year or two with the show. We were told that one of the Diabolos coaches performed during the opening year of La Nouba, which is hard to believe.

This was a media invite event, we were given two tickets to La Nouba and drinks and sushi at Morimoto Asia (new to Disney Springs). All opinions are mine! I will continue to purchase La Nouba tickets in the future to this fantastic show. Note: Photos and video are not allowed in the theater.