Lifestyle

Neil Goldberg: The Visionary Behind Cirque Productions

Holiday Extravaganza 'Cirque Dreams Holidaze' Coming to MGM

The holiday season may never be the same — at least not for those fortunate enough to see the 2018 electrifying stage spectacular “Cirque Dreams Holidaze,” coming to The Theater at MGM National Harbor, Dec. 20-23.

The show, described by the Boston Globe as “entrancing … Las Vegas meets family entertainment,” features over 300 imaginative costumes, 20 world-class acts, singers, original music and seasonal celebrations of Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah and New Year’s in a two-hour show that’s sure to send everyone home smiling, singing and satisfied.

Neil Goldberg, the creator and artistic director of Cirque Dreams, says his notion of entertainment has been foremost in his mind since the tender age of 8. Now, with five major productions going on at the same time in five different cities, there’s little time to rest. But for him, it’s an act of love.

“When my mother took me to see a Broadway show when I was a little boy, I was bitten by the bug,” he said. “We have choreographers, technicians, designers and performers totaling more than 150 people and we all love it. As artists, we live for this — the excitement, the anticipation, the adrenaline — there’s nothing else like it,” said Goldberg, a Broadway director and founder of Cirque Dreams and Cirque Productions whose career now spans more than four decades.

“I’m proud and humbled by the enormous popularity and success of our productions,” he said. “Fans really love our blend of new, contemporary circus artistry with Broadway musical theater included which seeks to celebrate the holidays.”

“This is something that I’ve been developing for decades — doing something unique, seeking a way to create a brand, embracing culture and diversity with special talents into a unique formation that would invite people to come, sit down in a theater and escape reality through beauty and imagination on stage. That’s been the common denominator for all of our shows.”

“Who doesn’t love the holiday season? As I developed ‘Cirque Dreams Holidaze,’ I thought back to when I was a little boy and being fascinated with the splendor of the holidays,” he said, noting that he’s since collected more than 10,000 Christmas ornaments from his journeys around the world.

“When the curtain rises, you’ll see a 24-foot tree with 30 artists in full costume, each representing an ornament. They’ll begin to come to life. That’s when the fun really begins. But the real payout, what makes this all worthwhile, is seeing the faces of children, some as young as three, who sit mesmerized for two hours. Parents send me notes all the time saying how amazed they were and how many of their children, after seeing the show, begin to show an interest in acrobatics or gymnastics. It’s all about motivating and encouraging young minds.”

“I’m a living example that what you imagine or conjure up in your mind, can really happen. Dreams can come true,” he said.

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D. Kevin McNeir – Senior Editor

Award-winning journalist and 21-year Black Press veteran, book editor, voice-over specialist and college instructor (Philosophy, Religion, Journalism). Before joining us, he led the Miami Times to recognition as NNPA Publication of the Year.

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