Best Circus Performers - 2006
Nouveau circus is full of the conventional balletic beauty we've come to expect from the art form. But mix it up with a dash of goth sexiness, surrealist debris, and an anarchic display of dance and pyrotechnics and you have Xeno, a new genre performance troupe whose over-the-top shows have cultivated a following. Naturally, the performers are some of Burning Man's most vaunted darlings beautiful bohemians who spread their enchantment through music, movement, and a hybrid theater of acrobatics and live-feed video projections. The company's band is fueled by a mohawked emcee snarling vocals through a bullhorn and a percussion- and didgeridoo-infused electronic soundscape that's both sensual and formidable. The five dancers are often decked out in dramatic outfits that make them look like celestial punks, their Olympian grace and athleticism matched by a stomping array of innovative floor moves, but that's only part of the spectacle. The ethereal trapeze and awe-inspiring fire dance are what really inspire ooh-ing and ahh-ing.