Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Never go back

I cannot shake the feeling that working for Cirque again has been a mistake.

The good memories that I once had have now being replaced by the grim realities of an organisation that appears to have lost its once beautiful soul.  In the past, all of us who worked for Cirque used to describe the atmosphere as having a "Cirque magic".  There was almost a feeling of joy being involved with Cirque and I cherished every moment that I was able to work.  It reached a point where even travelling to work elicited a feeling of excitement in me.

This atmosphere that captured my imagination (with my willing acceptance) seems to have disappeared.

In its place I find myself in a business, but it is an ordinary business.  There doesn't seem to be anything special or unique about this business and that is the most crushing thing of all.  The Cirque I once knew was far more than just a business, it was an organisation truly dedicated to the "show" and to the experience of the customer.

And yet, I cannot help but wonder about how much of the problem lies not the organisation and its undoubted changes but with myself.  I couldn't help but think back to a passage from one of my favourite books, "Keep the Aspidistra Flying" by George Orwell.

"It is like bathing for a second time on a summer day. However warm the day is, however much you have enjoyed your first bathe, you are always sorry for it if you go in a second time."

I have undoubtedly changed.  I have matured and grown with the passing of time as you would expect.  I wonder if this means that things can never be the same when you go back?  Does it mean that the old memories always linger like brambles that overwhelm the possibilities of new joys growing?

Monday, September 17, 2012

Some time in the sun

I never thought I would work for Cirque du Soleil again.

I had come to think of Cirque as something confined to my past.  I looked back on it with fond memories, but it was slowly slipping out of the range of what I could firmly grasp.  The experiences were becoming  faded and the emotions more distant.  I was even reaching the point where even some of the names of those I had previously worked with were becoming unfamiliar.  I was actually starting to forget names of some of those whom I had shared amazing experiences with.

So, when I found out that Cirque was returning to Australia with a new tour, I didn't pay too much attention.  It had been years since I had been able to watch a Cirque show and I had even overlooked going to the arena version of Saltimbanco when it had come through Sydney.  I sent a few emails to see if any friends were working the upcoming show, but that was mainly to organise catch ups and possible free tickets.

Then suddenly, a few changes in circumstances at my "real" job suddenly altered what was possible.  A change in my working hours now meant that working nights and weekends at Cirque was once again something within my realm of possibility.

This was an opportunity that was too good to pass up.  It was a serendipitous combination of events that was not going to happen again.  It meant a bit of extra money, the ability to watch some shows for free and a chance to meet some new people.  I couldn't think of any downside to this idea at all.....