The playful red spider climbs the wall in OVO

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Svetlana Delous almost had a master’s degree in education when Cirque du Soleil came calling.

“My classmates were very excited about my acrobatic training and they weren’t at all surprised that I was joining the circus,” she said in a phone interview from the road. Delous plays the red spider in OVO, Cirque du Soleil’s new traveling show in Rio Rancho (formerly Santa Ana Star Casino) for six performances from March 3-6.

OVO’s story involves the life cycle of fantastic insects in a busy world. Just look at the word “OVO”. Does anyone see two eyes and a nose?

“The kids in the audience love the red spider,” she said. “She is very fun and moves quickly. There’s so much to see and enjoy – all that acrobatic talent, live musicians and video projections.

Delous describes her character Red Spider as mischievous, inquisitive, and full of energy as she scrambles all over the stage. Her trickiest move is on the climbing wall where, near the end of the show, she positions her toes on two protruding handles and holds onto them hands-free.

It takes about an hour and a half for Delous to completely make up and dress up (see the video). “Makeup especially takes a lot less time than it did in the beginning,” she said. “It’s all muscle memory now.”

She is keen to say that she and her bandmates take great pride in placing their gear backstage for quick costume changes, as well as footwear and props. “We have a huge team of riggers and stage managers, but it’s my responsibility to have everything I need – shoes, rosin, my hat with the mic in it for sound checks – in place. We are a well-oiled machine.

March 3-6, Rio Rancho Events Center, six shows, ticketsonsale.com

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