“Odysseo,” which opened Nov. 12 and continues through Jan. 28, hosted a free 55-minute condensed version of its regular show on Dec. 21 for fire victims and first-responders. Also invited were foster kids from Camarillo’s Casa Pacifica Centers for Children and Families and children from area Boys & Girls Clubs,The $30-million, all-ages equestrian show mixes live action and digital projections and is playing under the white big top at 5230 Camino Ruiz next to the 101 Freeway at the bottom of the Conejo Grade.
The massive tent rises more than 120 feet above the ground.
“Odysseo,” presented by the Canada-based entertainment company Cavalia, was created by Cirque du Soleil pioneer Normand Latourelle.
The production starts with a setting that showcases the natural world and adds unique staging that includes a three-story mountain, a state-of-the-art video screen three times the size of an IMAX screen, and a lake made of 40,000 gallons of recycled water that magically appears for a splashing finale.
The equine stars of the show are the 65 male horses comprising 12 breeds and performing under the guidance of finely attired riders and trainers. For the scenes where the horses are unbridled and free to perform in unison, one may decide to veer from the herd and do his own thing.
The live band and one vocalist— who also appear onstage at times—are positioned within view of the action, so that if a horse indulges in playful independence, they accommodate him with extended music.
The human artists comprise acrobats, riders, dancers and aerialists from all over the world.
Video technology provides larger-than-life backdrops of a forest, Easter Island and the Sahara Desert. Sometimes these scenes are warmed by sunshine, drenched with rain or frozen with icicles.
Lighting techniques turn the ground beneath the performers from straw to sand to grass.
Props include a full-size carousel that lowers from the ceiling.
VIP tickets are available for purchase. VIP ticket holders enter a separate white tent that features a lounge-like atmosphere complete with a full meal buffet prepared on-site plus beer, wine and nonalcoholic drinks.
VIP tickets also include a backstage trip to the stables to meet the horses and photo opportunities with the performers after the show.
Ticket prices vary according to date, seating and availability. Service fees apply to all tickets. On-site parking is $20.
For more information, tickets and schedule, visit cavalia.com/ venturacounty.