Sean Gregory Interview
It all started while scrolling Facebook one day and coming across an ad. We all see ads on Facebook, right? This ad was different. It was appealing and eye catching and it lead to me clicking it and discovering Cirque du Soleil, for the very first time. Once discovering then I vowed to go to a show one day when they were closer to me. I got to attend my first Cirque du Soleil show a few months back, in Atlanta. Now OVO is on tour and they are set to hit my state at the end of July. In honor of OVO coming to Alabama, I received the amazing opportunity to interview Sean Gregory, one of the Crickets, from OVO. So what’s it like being a Cirque du Soleil performer in OVO?
- how long have you been with OVO?
I actually started with OVO in Australia when they were in the big top. I did a year long tour there. Then went on to Asia. That’s 4 years i think.
- Why OVO?
What first attracted me is the act I do. It’s a very high energy trampoline act with tumbling and air mats.
- Do you get travel a lot?
Right now we are in a new city every week. Our technical crew rolls in on Monday and Tuesday and they set the whole show up. Then we arrive on Wednesday and do some training then do a show Wednesday evening through Sunday. Sunday evening after the show we transfer to the next city and the technical crew load the show out and they join us in the next city.
- What got you into preforming?
I actually started as a tumbling gymnast, so I started gymnastics at about 5 years old. I guess my parents put me in because I have a lot of energy and they wanted to get rid of some of it. Then i started competing through Great Britain from about the age 11 to 18 and then I ran away with the circus.
- Do you still compete in competitions and performances?
No unfortunately, I can not it’s kinda one or the other because there isn’t enough time to train specifically for competition now. We’re just training for the show, it’s different.
- What does your training consist of?
A lot of us when we arrive we have a high skill level anyways, from the competitions, that’s why we’re scouted to come to the circus. Now really we just learn new skills and maintain. This week we’ve trained 4 times on trampoline with another training tomorrow. As well as the 7 shows this week we will also train 5 times for about an hour just trampoline.
- How is life on the road?
It’s interesting, very different now for me being an arena show. Before we were in the big top and we spend a couple months in a place but arena now we’re in a different city every week. Sometimes we don’t get time to see the city and sometimes we do. I think it’s great. I like this format, the arena format, we travel a lot. We have a fantastic catering team that cook food for us and a fantastic tour management team that organize all of our travel and things like this. So we do really well on the road.
- What sets Cirque Soleil apart from other circus’?
That’s an interesting question. We do a lot of things very differently. We don’t use any animals so we really physically acting animals, if we have to. Obviously the show is about insects, obviously we don’t have any insects but we are the insects. We have fantastic music, and fantastic costumes. We have a full wardrobe department who look after all of our costumes and keep them spic and span.
- What can we expect to see while attending OVO?
this show is very different from other shows because we only have insects, there are no human characters in the show. If your a cricket, like me, we have crickets all the time. Sometimes it’s hard but it makes the show very different from a lot of other Cirque shows. I think it’s a nice difference, you know. We have fantastic Brazilian music and Brazilian kinda style costumes, you know kinda extravagant and things like that. But I think it’s just different. A very high energy show, a celebration of life and love and things like this.
- How long does it take to prepare for a show like OVO?
As a whole there is a lot of things that go into it. We’re very appreciative of all the other people we work with. You know, it’s not just the artist on stage we have a tech crew in the mornings fixing and maintaining things. Then the artists will arrive to train, while you’ve got floor management and company managers and they are organizing the next city. You know, hotels, transport and things like this. I think it’s a really big well working machine. Everybody knows what they gotta do , everybody loves what they do, and it just works together somehow. It just works very well together.
- How many people/performers are involved in bringing OVO to life?
We currently have around 50 artists from 17 different countries, which is crazy but obviously we have the best of the best, you know. We tour with 100 people in total. That takes it up to around 20 different nationalities on tour.
We are excited to come to Alabama, I’ve never been, it should be pretty cool and we’re going to be there the 27th – 31st. I’m looking forward to it.
For more information on OVO’s tour schedule and to purchased tickets go HERE