Paranormal Cirque is neither for families nor for delicate souls.
In fact, the European-style Halloween-themed circus bans running 14-24. October under a large tent in Aurora’s Premium Outlets parking lot, all younger than 12 years from participating.
But if you want cirque-inspired entertainment with a touch of the macabre, this R-rated Cirque Italia production may be the seasonal show for you.
The Italian entertainment company was founded in 2012 by Manuel Rebecchi and originally produced family-friendly aquatic glasses until 2018, when Cirque Italien introduced the darker theme Paranormal circus.
Macabre magic, courtesy of James Giroldini, is among the chills Paranormal Cirque delivers when the R-character, Halloween-themed circle-style show opens this week in Aurora.
Greetings from Michael Gillman
According to general manager and contortionist Benjamin Holland, the producers wanted to deliver a cirque-style tour for people who love Halloween, scary movies and horror.
“In the United States, nothing suited that kind of niche,” said Holland, a Washington DC native who has been in the business for two years. “There was nothing here that filled that gap.”
The bet paid off, he said. “People love it.”
Artists include aerialists, magicians, contortionists, acrobats, clowns and others, but so far no jugglers.
“We’ll probably never get jugglers here because it does not feel scary enough,” Holland said.
Seen in the underworld, the Paranormal Cirque examines human evil, specifically sins such as anger, lust and greed, among others, Holland said, adding the circus performers portray characters “doomed to eternal (explosive) and lust.”
Signature acts include a high-wire performance with a motorcycle that Holland says is so intense he can’t bear to see.
Cirque Italia brings its Halloween theme, R-rated European circus show Paranormal Cirque to Aurora 14-24. October.
Greetings from Steve Hyde
To get audience members pumping, Paranormal Cirque added a preshow haunted house in an attempt to take “things bigger and better than they were before,” Holland said, describing the show as “an escape from the daily madness.”
“There really is no substitute for live entertainment,” he said. “People want to go out and be a part of something … something they can reach out and touch if they wanted to.”
Typically, the audience responds with gasps and expressions of disbelief, he said.
“I’m a perversion case,” he said. “Every time I do tricks and people say ‘Oh God’, that’s when I know it works.”
Participation shows it. The Netherlands says shows are usually sold out, even the socially distant shows that were performed during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I really hope people come out (to Aurora) and have a good time,” he said. “I promise you’ll love it.”
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When: 14.-24. October
Where: Under the white and black big top at Chicago Premium Outlets, 1650 Premium Outlet Blvd., Aurora
Tickets: $ 10- $ 50. For a mature audience. No one younger than 13 was admitted. Protectors 13 to 17 must be accompanied by an adult. (941) 704-8572 or paranormalcirque.com/tickets
COVID-19 Precautions: Limited, Socially Distant Seating and Mandatory Masks Required