We Just Found the Perfect Experience for a Date Night in Toronto

Cirque du Soleil VOLTA is in Toronto from now until November 26. Relationship expert Jen Kirsch tells us why the show makes the perfect date night activity.
I’ve always said the best gift you can give someone is an experience, and not a material good. I mean, yeah, sure it’s nice to get jewellery or items of interest (I’m still human!), but there’s something heartwarming and fulfilling that comes with creating memories with another.
And so, with that in mind, I decided to gift my boyfriend tickets to see the new-to-town Cirque du Soleil production of VOLTA (which runs through until November 26.) If you’ve ever been to a Cirque show, chances are you can vividly recall where you saw it, who you were with, and how it made you feel as you watched awestruck at the amazing talent, and the storylines that always tend to tug on your heartstrings. It’s that feeling that I wanted to gift to my other half more than anything. And safe to say, I did good.
We got to the big top tent down at the Toronto Port Lands, grabbed adult-beverages and popcorn (mostly because the sign said there’s free refills, so we took advantage of that because we’re savages) and headed to our seats, not knowing what to expect.
As the show began and the talented performers began to do what they did best, I caught myself constantly squeezing my squeeze’s hand, like I do when watching a fearful scene. His hand basically lost circulation when one of the sequences was a woman suspended by her hair. Uh, yeah. Her hair was tied up in a bun, and the artist was suspended only by her hair, as she levitated slowly from a cushion beneath her. She rose up above the stage swinging back and forth (before spinning into a full-fledged spin like a top). We were so blown away by that and the breathtaking BMX finale where the artists did acrobatics on wheels.
cirque du soleil volta
Image: Patrice Lamoureux
But what really stuck with me during the show, and likely will forever, was the storyline. The show is about freedom, being your most authentic self, and setting your own path. As a screen displayed the shows main character as his younger self, we see him playing with his mom as she chases him and takes images of him, yet we never see her face. And this is what Cirque does best: They consistently have these tender, human, real moments that take your breath away and transport you to a different time and place. As I watched the faceless mom, I was brought back to a time when my mom was still alive and I was in her arms laughing — I swear I heard her voice. Goosebumps took over my body and tears poured out as I looked over at my partner who gave me a tender, knowing look, before squeezing my hand.
It’s these feels, and going through these feels and the whole wave of emotions that came up during the show, that brought us to that sweet spot where couples have the potential to be: One where we can bond over art, a shared experience and the knowingness that we were in it together.
Though I didn’t get it at the time (but just bought it on iTunes today,) the VOLTA soundtrack was remarkable. The music is done with international electronic group M83, as composer and musical director for the show, and not only do I get the chills when listening to it, but it brings me back to that night with my boy. Total bonus.
What: Cirque du Soleil VOLTA
When: Now until November 26
Where: Port Lands (51 Commissioners Street)

Get more details about Cirque du Soleil VOLTA here.

All images by Patrice Lamoureux

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