Leuven in Scènes: Fous de bassins by Ilotopie

The main attraction of Leuven in Scène was a spectacle on the canal where we'd get to see some sort of "Cirque de Soleil" on water according to the festival's program. They had already performed in Paris, Rome, London, Chicago etc and now it was Leuven's turn. There was 45 min between the performance of Voala which was sufficient to walk the 30 min walk from the city centre to the canal....but I imagined that it would be quite tight to find a good spot to view it all.

Sure enough , in the midst of Voala's show there was a distinct stream of people leaving. Nevertheless we heard afterwards that the turnout of the crowd was so immense that the vast majority had not seen anything. A lot of disappointed people had attempted to see in vain while the organization was totally taken by surprise by the approx 20000 people in the street.

But it looked so cool so we were very motivated on Sunday to go well in time in advance and ensure we'd have a good spot. 80 minutes before the start we stood on the second row in the middle of the canal's winding hole. Frequently the first 10 to 20 rows of people were asked to sit down to give a possibility to the rows behind to get a glimpse of the show. Since I can't sit well yet, I more or less lay down. The big disadvantage of sitting down at the front rows is that we were now looking through the security fences...but I understood that it was the only way to increase the capacity. When a bit further some stubborn people didn't want to go sit down, the atmosphere got rather hostile with lots of yelling back and forth.

Sure enough by 11PM the entire canal was packed again: 30000 people had found their way along the canal and we praised ourselves lucky behind the safety fence at the midst of the action!

"Fous de Bassin" is a magical show where commuters seem to float over the water, a little volkswagen parks on the water, beds are rowed across the canal and a janitor can fish up a functioning street lamp. Strange bizar and magical. You're transformed into a magical world that doesn't make sense at all but which is highly intriguing and never dull. The water queen is throdden by on a huge water wheel, the boat that carries Poseidon has fireworks while other boast show a fire joust fight, the commuter's hair is magically on fire constantly.... It was hard to follow what was going on as we were sucked into a utopian world that is not ours but it was hard not to keep our eyes away from the touches of light and colours and fireworks in front of us.

I tried to take some pictures but the moving objects in the dark from behind a fence were impossible to take. Check out the excellent pictures made Erik O and Kris Luckermans on their blog.

I've attempted to film a bit with a tiny hand camera but since it was dark and I never found the zoom & on/off button easily and I was constantly distracted about all the things moving and exploding in front of me, I'll make you all seasick watching :p.
Anyway, here's some of my little films bu


Brian Miller said…
oh that had to be so cool...have watched it on TV, but to see in person...very nice.
Haley-O said…
Wow! crazy that you saw that live!

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