Mesmerizing circus ship show docks at
Port of Everett on Labor Day weekend
The tall ship and its performers light up the sky as part of the show.
EVERETT — Part theater, part tall ship, part communal living quarters for 20 performers, the Amara Zee is all that and a plate of fish and chips, and she’ll be docking in Everett for shows this weekend.
The Caravan Stage Company is a unique iteration of the ages old traveling show: indeed, Captain Paul Kirby used to lead the troupe on tour by hoof, relying on Clydesdales to transport the traveling entertainers’ wagons.
He’s been at it for 48 years now.
“We don’t know any other lifestyle, we have no house, car, no mortgage. We feel very free and very mobile,” he said.
He says the life aboard the 90-foot tall ship isn’t as cramped as audiences might imagine.
“The most traditional warships they had — those are ones you see, the tall ships that go to festivals: Everything’s very tight, the concept is to fill all the space ... we’re doing the total opposite. It’s a much more breathable and livable environment,” Kirby explained.
Once the Amara Zee transforms into a stage, audiences will experience a spectacle in the Caravan Stage Company’s original production, “Nomadic Tempest.”
“Tempest” is a parable about climate change which balances message with entertainment value. The narrative show shares the “mythical saga” of a band of migrating Monarch butterflies from Mexico, China, the Salish Sea and Syria. The performance is multilingual with subtitles in English. In an earth-threatening conflict an oracle, Kanandra, and the Monarchs battle an oil industry personified by “SwallowWarts.”
Audiences engage in the story through Kirby’s eclectic staging, he both writes and directs shows, making full use of the vessel. There are aerial feats, movie screens affixed to the rigging, live music and high-impact lighting that highlights fantastical costumes.
While the style is hard to define, the troupe uses “climatopian spectacle rock opera” for shorthand.
The show opens at Everett’s Boxcar Park, 1200 Millwright Loop W., on Aug. 31 and continues Sept. 1 and 2, at 9 p.m. each night. Theatergoers are advised to bring low backed chairs and dress warmly enough for a waterside show. Tickets are available by donation. Suggested donations are $25 for adults, $10 for children under 14, and $20 for seniors. Tickets are available at www.caravanstage.org
The 2018 season concludes with four 8:30 p.m. performances Sept. 12 - 15 in Port Townsend.
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