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Cirque Mechanics returns to Cache Valley with a new look

By Natalie Deaver
thenataliejill.wordpress.com

Cirque Mechanics, an acrobatic group known for its use of mechanical gadgets, began its fall 2015 Pedal Punk tour in Logan, Utah on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The group will stop in 11 locations throughout the duration of the tour — and aside from New York, Logan is the only place that has the group for more than one night.

“It is a big deal that Cirque Mechanics came to Logan but it’s an even bigger deal that their opening show was held in our very own Ellen Eccles Theatre,” said Wendi Hassan, the executive director of the Cache Valley Center for the Arts.

Chris Lashua, who spins about on a circular metal structure known as a German wheel, founded Cirque Mechanics in 2004. The acrobatic act showcases aerial performances, trampoline stunts, and other common circus tricks – but with a mechanical twist.

Pedal Punk will also be performing later this year in the New Victory Theatre in New York. “It is amazing that the group would even think to put Cache Valley in the same category as a theatre on 42nd Street,” Hassan said.

Cirque Mechanics last came to Logan in September of 2011 with a show called Boomtown. This year, the group has centered its Pedal Punk performance on bikes and wheels to create a new feel for those who saw the previous show. The performers wanted to “emphasize the awe factor,” Hassan said.

After the intermission on Wednesday night one of the acrobats called audience member Michael Torrace to the stage. For a little under five minutes, Torrace participated in a fake bicycle race to help entertain the audience while crew members set up the next act.

“It was fun that they actually involved the crowd,” he said. “I felt like I was a very effective prop. If Cirque Mechanics ever returns to Cache Valley I will definitely buy another ticket. I’ll just have to remember to avoid the front row.”

-mdl