The bad reviews keep coming in for Criss Angel’s “Believe,” his collaboration with the Cirque Du Soleil — although they aren’t actual reviews. Producers have asked for no reviews during the first few days, while the show works out the tweaks and kinks before its Halloween debut.
Agreeing with that detail, Mike Weatherford of the Las Vegas Review-Journal was allowed in to see the show. True, he didn’t review the show. But he did dish about some of the effects, and that the show has a long way to go toward living up to promises that it would reinvent magic. From his column:
Weatherford suggests that Cirque’s production approach might be the problem, in that they didn’t go to the right illusion builders. Weatherford’s biggest beef is that he didn’t see any illusions he hadn’t seen before.
That seems to be confirmed by a story in the L.A. Times, which states there is a disconnect between Angel and Cirque’s developers about what “Believe” is supposed to be. According to this quote from Gilles Ste-Croix, Cirque’s senior veep for creation:
“It’s a Cirque show where he is the main character,” Ste-Croix said by phone from Montreal last month. “We used this man who has the following of a star, but in our scenario. It’s not MGM with Criss Angel, it’s MGM with Cirque du Soleil. Because he is the main artist, we had him participate with input.”
Angel’s response in the story to the notion that it’s a Cirque show, not a Mindfreak show, is chilly:
“That’s not the case,” he said, looking to a coterie of managers, publicists, lawyers and illusion specialists in his room for confirmation. “We need to have a conversation with Mr. Gilles Ste-Croix.”