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Swiss Christmas: A show like no others!

Magnificent, you have to see it for yourself! Outstanding performances!

I would not find a better way to wait for Christmas and get into the holiday spirit than by going to Swiss Christmas!

But what is Swiss Christmas?

It’s a show in Zurich celebrating its second season. In a matter of minutes you are brought into the world of Christmas with powerful music, songs, dances, illusion, acrobatic and comedy performances.

Anna Mayer Cosco and Johannes Mayer the producers got the idea for this brand new spectacle and it took them 2 1/2 years to fulfill their dream.

Thirty one artists from five nations will perform 43 shows in 34 days until the 31st of December. They will be a Christmas and a New Year gala.

 

Stylize and other dancers with singer Fabienne Louves at Swiss Christmas in Zurich

Stylize and other dancers with singer Fabienne Louves at Swiss Christmas in Zurich

Anne Gorgerat Kall, PR Consulting for Swiss Christmas, told me how they selected the artists. They were chosen at various time of the year. For instance for some it was in February 2011 and for others later in July. The producers did not organize castings but rather made a decision after either looking at the artists videos, visiting them at festivals or while observing them during other previous shows.

Many artists are from Eastern Europe (Hungary and Ukraine). Anne explained that they “choose artists by their act and not their nationality.” It is common to find many circus schools in Eastern Europe compared to other parts of the world like North America and Western Europe.

This year’s show is different from last year as they “changed the story of the show, we enhanced the decoration, the tent infrastructure and other technical items”.

 

Banquet room of Swiss Christmas

Banquet room of Swiss Christmas

Some things stay the same, said Anne. They “kept the modern Christmas design and the LED Video wall as an essential part of the show” as they find the design “in the Foyer and Banqueting high and the show concept special and extraordinary”.

This year they decided to reduce the number of days and stop after the New Year gala show because after that day Christmas spirit is over. Most visitors in 2010 were from the Cantons  Zurich and Aargau.

The show takes place in a huge tent of 4,000 sqm in Oerlikon on the open racetrack next to Theater 15, Hallenstadion and 8 minutes from train station. It takes about a month to build the tent. This year it started on October 19th, with a crew working six to seven days a week with 10 to 30 men at a time.

Before the show people can have dinner or lunch. You can enter the foyer and choose to sit inside of the large beautiful decorated banquet room or decide to eat in the cheese Stube or something quick like a tarte flambée or a waffle standing up. The foyer is opened to everyone with an entrance ticket. Last year Swiss Christmas sold 8,000 dinners.

 

Little girls with traditional Swiss costumes and bells at Swiss Christmas

Little girls with traditional Swiss costumes and bells at Swiss Christmas

Christmas trees are spotted everywhere in the tent, on the stage and around. Colorful balls, decorated tables give its holiday spirit.

And is it really a Swiss Christmas?

Yes, we are constantly reminded it is Made in Switzerland!

We see Swiss cross signs on some artists jackets and we hear cow bells ringing in the foyer. For the Première there was a Swiss dance with traditional costumes. As well at one time Isabel Florido, the story teller, says that a particular smell reminds her of the Zurich Oberland.

 

And how really was Swiss Christmas?

When the Première ended on Saturday night around 10:15 p.m, I was so happy after such a memorable evening.

I had caught the Christmas! I was now ready for Christmas.

 

Finale of Swiss Christmas Première

Finale of Swiss Christmas Première

To have a powerful show, you need top artists. Some of them have trained in prestigious schools and worked in re-known circuses like Cirque du Soleil. At Swiss Christmas you can see solos, duos or larger groups. They love what they do, you could feel it and see it.

The producers invited once again, the Swiss group Stylize due to their popular success in 2010. “The public loved them and we had a lot of requests from guests to have them again in our program”, said Anne Gorgerat.

It is understandable that this group of six is doing so well. The friendly young men based in Zurich are dancers, but not any dancers. They can change from Hip Hop, step, ballet, break dance, jazz or something more modern in an instant. I met three of the group members, Sandro Minasi, Andy Müller and Daniel Borak, during the Première Party. Sandro told me that they had done a show in the US but before going on Tour starting in March 2012, the group was going to take a two month vacation.

 

Daniel Borak, Andy Müller and Sandro Minasi from Stylize after the Première of Swiss Christmas

Daniel Borak, Andy Müller and Sandro Minasi from Stylize after the Première of Swiss Christmas

But what I was eager to see is Vincent Vignaud, the French magician and illusionist. Why? First, because I love magic. Second I was really impatient to see his performance with his two ladies as we were meeting after the show.

I quickly noticed that Vincent was playing a big role in the show in addition to his four illusions. I am still amazed of what he did and wish I knew the secrets to all his tricks.

Incredible what Simon Nadeau could do with a ladder, Kata Kiss with her net and Hulo Hoop and Oaskana with her air ring.

Vincent Vignaud and helper at Swiss Christmas

Vincent Vignaud and helper at Swiss Christmas

What would be so dangerous for us looked so easy for them. But one knows that to accomplish such difficult acts, one needs to work so hard to get it right.

“Crossroads” two artists, Taras Hoy and Aleksey Egorov walked, danced and jumped on a string blindfolded with great precision. And there was the two Ukrainians for “Once on the Street”, who did an admirable performance in the air.

 

La Vision at Swiss Christmas

La Vision at Swiss Christmas

The performance of La Vision was spectacular, a man and a woman moving together, making one, like a statue. They were all powdered in white, wearing only a bathing suit. Suddenly the spectator can notice how the light moves and accentuates the lines of their body muscles, showing all the strength in their arms and legs. It is perfection at its most.

The public loved the U- Show team jumping and flipping on a trampoline while a Hip-Hop song was playing.

The music, a combination of low, upbeat, classical, tzigane, Hip Hop or soul, can only please every type of music lover. Same thing with dances going from break-dance, ballet, steps to Hip-Hop.

The performers showed how much agility, precision, balance, coordination, trust in others and body and mental strength is important to succeed.

Who are the singers of the show?

Fabienne Louves is the main singer at Swiss Christmas. Her voice is just beautiful and she sings either in German or English. During the show she wore different costumes from evening dresses to a colorful saloon dress.

Isabel Florido, the storyteller, pretending to be a little girl, sung a couple songs as well and changed her outfits often. I personally loved her in her purple Bavarian attire and her flashy long evening dress!

At the end of the show Isabel found what she was looking for, but you will have to go see it to find out what it is.

 

Swiss Christmas - Isabel Florido pausing after the Première

Swiss Christmas – Isabel Florido pausing after the Première

The crowd loved the show tremendously especially when it was reaching its summit toward the finale.The only regrets of that evening is that it had to end!

So don’t wait any longer and let yourself be transported into the magical world of Christmas.

 

 YOU WANT TO GO?
  • Where is it: Zurich Oerlikon – Offene Rennbahn (Open Racetrack) – Visit their website for more info.
  • Prices: from CHF 39 to 220 with discounts for families on special days or shows.
  • Children are welcomed – They should be able to sit twice 1 hour with a 20 minute break.
  • The show is appropriate to foreigners with no knowledge of German as talking is limited.

 

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