by Cirque du Soleil
KÀ, the unprecedented, gravity-defying production by Cirque du Soleil takes adventure to an all-new level. Be awed by a dynamic theatrical landscape, as an entire empire appears on the KÀ colossal stage and a captivating display of aerial acrobatics envelops the audience.
Behind the Scenes
Archers & Spearmen
A malevolent underground society built on war and domination by violence. They mine a rare element that can be processed into powerful explosives for weapons.
Wash-Up on Shore
Created and directed by Robert Lepage, KÀ began show previews on November 26, 2004 and the show premiered on February 3, 2005. KÀ was the first Cirque du Soleil show to encompass a cohesive storyline. The show's title, KÀ, is inspired by the ancient Egyptian belief in the "KÀ" an invisible spiritual duplicate of the body that accompanies every human being throughout this life into the next
KÀ is the first Cirque du Soleil production that deviates from the company's usual format - the production presents a more straightforward story, unlike the more abstract visuals presented by other Cirque productions. The show and the theatre cost $165 million to develop.
Set and Technical Info
Creator and Director
Director of Creation
Theatre & Set Designer
KÀ lacks a conventional stage with a permanent floor; instead, two giant moving platforms and five smaller lifts and platforms appear to float through a bottomless space. A narrow boardwalk separates the audience from a deep abyss where the stage floor would normally be. From the stage level of the boardwalk up to the high grid is 98 feet (30m), and the pit drops 51 feet (16m) below, amounting to a total of some 15 stories from the highest ceiling grid to the lowest floor level. The opening width and depth of the performance area are each 120 feet (37m) This enormous performance space is reconfigured with each scene change by the complex movements of the show's lifts and platforms.
Acrobatic Equipment and
Aerial Acrobatics Designer and Head Coach, Creation
The largest moveable platform employed in the show, the Sand Cliff Deck, measures 25x50x6 feet (7.6x15.2x1.8 m) and weights 50 tons. A vertical gantry crane supports and controls the Sand Cliff Deck, lifting the platform up and down 72 feet (22m), rotating it 360 degrees and tilting it from flat to 100 degrees. This is attached to four 75-foot-long (23m) hydraulic cylinders that run along two support columns. The Sand Cliff Deck is equipped with show and work lights, circular elevators to bring performers in and out, 80 'rod actuators' that sprout from the floor surface to enable performers to climb it when it is tilted vertically, and the video projection tiles that allow computer generated images to appear on the floor of the deck. In one scene, the entire deck is covered with 350 cubic feet of imported granular cork from Portugal which creates the realistic appearance of a beach.
The second largest platform, the Tatami Deck, is a cantilevered 30-by-30-foot platform located upstage of the Sand Cliff Deck. It weighs 75,000 pounds (34,00kg), and slides in and out like a drawer to provide a horizontal stage and carry massive set pieces such as the Wheel of Death.
These two decks can appear alone or together or simply disappear from view; they can move in front of, behind, above, or below each other.
The theatre and stage were designed by British Architect Mark Fisher; the structural design and engineering of th stage platforms was by the New York City engineering firm McLaren Engineering gGroup, owned and operated by Mal McLaren. The torsion tube, wrist, and arm assembly for the Sand Cliff deck were built by Timberland Equipment, and company that normally builds mining equipment.
in 2008, the unique floating stages earned KÀ the prestigious Thea Award for Outstanding Technical Achievement from the Themed Entertainment Association.
Sound & Video
The KÀ theatre, which has a capacity of 1950 people, is equipped with total of 4774 loudspeaker drivers in 2139 cabinets: a pair of speakers at ear level in every seat and hundreds more strategically placed around the auditorium. The digitally mixed audio system routes an intricate mix of sound effects and music to these speakers to create a very dynamic surround-sound audio experience. Sound effects can be targeted, manipulated and customized to any of the 16 seating zones.
The multimedia projection in the show utilizes both infrared video motion detecting as well as a system of touch-sensitive panels beneath the surface of the main Sand Cliff deck. This allows the system to track the location of individual performers and change the video content accordingly. A similar example of the infrared portion of this technology can be seen in some movie theatre lobbies where people can step on and burst video projected bubbles.