It’s true that most Cirque productions elicit “Os” from audience members but in this case the “O” stands for the French word “eau” which is phonetically similar to the way the letter “O” is pronounced in English.
n French, “eau” means water. It’s an appropriate appellation since the “O” takes place in, on top of, and around a 1.5 million gallon pool of water!
Those with “O” tickets will be treated to 11 amazing acts of artistry including synchronized swimming, trapeze acts, fire dancing, high diving, and aerial hoops. O’s cast includes 85 performers all of whom are scuba-certified. The performers wear special costumes that can endure the water and the chemicals in it.
Some of the outfits, like the ones worn by the show’s swimmers, only last a few months, others only 20 shows. A few performers have multiple get-ups so they can quickly change and appear like they’re dry even though they’ve just exited the water. Each O show produces about sixty loads of laundry. For the outfits that can’t be thrown into the dryer a special room has been built where they can air-dry.
The O Theatre is a work of art unto itself. Fashioned after a 14th century European opera house, the O Theatre seats 1,800.
Each one of those seats has its own heater. While these heaters keep O ticket holders warm and comfortable, the goal is to have the stage at higher temperature than the rest of theatre. Think about it, condensation would ruin the production.
Don’t worry about having to dress warm. The pool is kept at 88 °F so even if the rest of theatre is ten degrees cooler it will still be comfortable.
The show’s pool is not like the one at your local Y. It’s equipped with speakers so the performers can hear underwater.
There are also regulators strategically placed so swimmers and divers can grab a breath of oxygen without having to surface. Another unique aspect of the 1.5 million-gallon pool is its underwater stage. It can rise and fall without producing a wake.
Whenever maintenance needs to be conducted, workers drain the pool into Bellagio Lake. Draining of the water takes about 12 hours and causes the lake to raise an inch.