Off to join the circus

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Noah Bremer is an actor, artistic director of Live Action Set theater, and soon to be a clown with Cirque du Soleil.

Noah Bremer has always wanted to join the circus. And now, at the age of 33, his dream is coming true. The world famous Cirque du Soleil has offered him a part – a significant part – in its touring show “Varekai.” He starts training on June 3, which begins in Montreal (where he’ll learn how to do his own make-up – a 2 hour process – among other things) and then takes him to Frankfurt, where he’ll shadow the performer he’s replacing.

So, how does it feel to have a dream come true?

Both terrifying and obscenely fulfilling. It’s funny – Cirque really likes people who are a little more established, who have a real presence and character. What’s difficult about that, is that by the time you’ve achieved all that, you’ve set some roots down. It was easier to contemplate running away with the circus when I didn’t have such a great community of friends, and my own theater company.

Noah Bremer had to study this piece and replicate it as precisely as he could for his audition.

Bremer has been performing in the Twin Cities for years, and in December took on the position of sole Artistic Director of Live Action Set. But then in February, he got the offer from Cirque du Soleil.

Rather than drop the job with Live Action Set, Bremer says he’s going to continue working as Artistic Director… from Frankfurt, Belgium, and wherever else the circus takes him.

Our company has always been experimental – and now even the way we run the theater is going to be experimental, too.

Bremer says his colleague Joanna Harmon will transition into the role of Executive Director, handling the day to day details, while Bremer continues to set the vision for the company – via Skype – from abroad. Bremer jokes that he’s been overcommitted all his life, and he doesn’t think the circus is going to stop that. He also thinks it will be important to maintain a strong connection to Minneapolis while he’s on tour. Otherwise, he says, it would be easy to lose his identity in the huge performance machine of Cirque du Soleil.

Bremer is producing and performing in one last show with Live Action Set before he takes off. It’s called “The Happy Show,” and it’s a collaborative piece that will take over the Bedlam Theatre’s entire building with multiple vignettes.

The idea is during difficult times, this group of happymakers comes and performs the ritual of happiness. But it’s dangerous, because if they don’t succeed the world will literally explode.

Bremer says the play is responding to what’s going in the world right now, i.e. NOT happy stuff.

Every time I turn around there’s another natural disaster, or a pirate ship… it’s just there’s a lot of sadness in the world. We’re not trying to be trite with this, we’re looking at what is happiness, and whether you can be happy in this climate, through an experiential event.

“The Happy Show” runs April 29 through May 14.

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