Something feels a bit kindred between the old-timey allure of the circus and queerness. We’re at home in the outer fringes, getting a little bit weird and a lot bit theatrical. The camp, the sparkle, the drama, the costumes, the spectacle, the song “Circus” by Britney Spears, Hugh Jackman singing musical numbers about the greatest show on earth—that’s a whole vibe for us. It’s quite appropriate, then, to learn that Cirque du Soleil is hosting an Equality Night benefiting Houston LGBTQ+ center, Tony’s Place.
Cirque is a truly evolved, modern, high-art version of the circus arts that somehow unleashes both your inner high school theatre kid and your inner “did you just see that FLIP” kid. Part drag, part opera, part trapeze act, part extreme sport, Cirque has been traveling through the US and hosting Equality Nights in each city, bringing even more the communities they are entertaining.
Along with the spectacular costumes, vibrant sets, and powerful music, Alegria by is a classic Cirque du Soleil piece that has been reimagined, fitting quite well in 2020. Alegria tells a story of the aristocratic ideals of the old guard being challenged by the revolutionary ideals of a youth in revolt, of an emergent movement that sets in motion a series of changes to the status quo—a message that resonates with LGBTQ+ communities.
Cirque du Soleil is putting their money where their mouth is by choosing to benefit Tony’s Place while here in Houston. A vital resource for the community, Tony’s Place is a drop-in center in Houston focusing on LGBTQ+ youth up to 25 years of age who are unstably housed, couch surfing or experiencing homelessness. Providing solutions for immediate needs, Tony’s Place’s services are provided free of charge for anything from hot meals and showers to clothing, even access to WiFi or just a place to charge your phone. Not just helping LGBTQ+ youth grow, but helping them to thrive, Tony’s Place also provides educational programs, health and wellness programs, occupational training, and cultural enrichment.
Members of the public can purchase $50 regular tickets and $175 VIP tickets by visiting https://cirk.me/2G21mG4. A wide array of celebrities and other personalities—many of them identifying as LGBTQ—will attend and walk the rainbow carpet that evening. There will also be photo opportunities with Alegría artists. VIP tickets include access to the Hennessy Black VIP Experience.
Tickets are now on sale by visiting https://cirk.me/2G21mG4 or by calling 1-877-9CIRQUE (1-877-924-7783) or visiting cirquedusoleil.com/alegria and using promo code TONY.