Cirque Italia pours it on at Dover Mall

Cirque Italia’s water circus takes up residence in the Dover Mall parking lot starting today through Sunday. (Submitted photos)

Cirque Italia’s water circus takes up residence in the Dover Mall parking lot starting today through Sunday. (Submitted photos)

DOVER –– Cirque Italia is bringing its water circus to the parking lot of Dover Mall this weekend, a spectacle complete with acrobats, aerial artists, feats of strength and fountains choreographed to music.

The Sarasota, Florida-based circus was founded by the Italian-born Manuel Rebecchi.

Mr. Rebecchi is the nephew of Moira Orfei, considered the Queen of the Italian Circus and grew to love the profession while traveling with her across Italy and Europe. He brought the passion with him when he moved to the United States in 2003, eventually starting Cirque Italia in 2012.

“He had a vision to do something unique and so the water was integrated into the show and the fountains play a small role at the beginning when the stage gets a lot of use, but as the show progresses, the fountains and curtains of rain become featured more,” said Nicole Fusco, spokeswoman for Cirque Italia.

The two-hour show also features a 35,000-gallon water stage.

“I want to see people have fun, enjoy the show, and go out with a smile and the desire to come back,” said Mr. Rebecchi in a press release.

The circus features a variety of acts.

The Musical Clowns are the show’s animators, displaying a wide variety of musical slapstick and comedy.

The Verticali Act from Italy features artists sing operatic music while performing upside down.

The Laserman plays with the laws of physics as he “holds” a beam of light in his hand, splits it into two, then bends it and wields it like a saber of light.

Children should enjoy the mermaid as she emerges from her shell and swims through the fountains!

The first two years, the circus stayed in the southeast United States and in 2014, it started traveling up the East Coast and into the Midwest.

The Verticali Act uses balance and artistry during Cirque Italia.

The Verticali Act uses balance and artistry during Cirque Italia.

“We are definitely growing and would like to eventually do shows across the country,” Ms. Fusco said.

The circus has a team of 40 on the road, hailing from all over the world and all working various jobs at each stop.

The performers double as ticket and concession salesmen and pitch in wherever else a hand is needed.

“Working closely is very European and makes for a better experience for the attendees too,” Ms. Fusco said.

“You get to meet the performers who may be selling the tickets and even after the show, the performers are available to talk and take photos.”

The unique atmosphere extends to the seating, as the tent is smaller than the average circus tent.

“There isn’t a bad seat and it makes for a really intimate atmosphere,” Ms. Fusco said.

“Everyone in the tent gets a great view of each high-energy act whether it’s the acrobats, jugglers or clowns.”

The team is on the road from January to late November, starting out in Florida and going from there.

At each stop, the first circus members start arriving on Sunday night and by Tuesday morning, everyone is at the new location setting up for that week’s show.

It takes about two and a half days to set up the tent, fountains and to pump in the 35,000 gallons of water that are used in the show.

Shows are in the mall parking lot next to Dick’s Sporting Goods and Sears.

Show times are today at 7:30 p.m., Saturday at 2:30, 5:30 and 8:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2:30 and 5:30 p.m.

Tickets range in price from $10 to $50 depending on seating location and can be purchased online at, by calling 941-704-8572 or at the onsite box office which is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. now through Sunday.

Children are admitted free with adult admissions of higher levels.


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