marquardt+ (work performed as Design Collaboratives), in partnership with Miller-Zell Atlanta, was selected by Cirque du Soleil to create a completely new Front of House/Retail experience. This is the complete interior public entry experience of the event space and/or tents and contains retail, food concessions, corporate sponsorship information and way finding to the performance space.

After 25 years of creating their own Front of House presentation internally, Cirque du Soleil came to the conclusion that they needed to source creative assistance with expertise in retail environments, product display and information presentation to overhaul the experience. As well, the Front of House solution had to be designed to allow set up and take down in one day, be mountable within the restrictions of the existing tent structure and engineering, and pack tightly into their transport semi-trucks.

After being short listed through a competitive Request for Proposal process, our team was selected by Cirque du Soleil to become the first outside creative group in Cirque's 25-year history to provide design services to the organization. We developed three alternative ideas based on the abstraction of a perceived cultural experience; one that is not specific to any country or culture, (much like Cirque du Soleil performance experiences themselves). This idea allowed for the development and application of the selected design to be incorporated into any present and upcoming shows touring the world and in permanent locations without specific customizations other than projection.

Our team completed the finalized design and development package at the beginning of 2009. Miller Zell proceeded with fabrication resolution, production and installation of the first new Front of Space for the tent performance debut Cirque du Soleil's newest show, OVO premiering in May 2009 in Montreal.

The following images profile the complete presentation of the selected design direction including ideation and concept development, documentation photography and narrative shots of the first installation in use. The documentation photography was graciously provided by Miller Zell and the narrative photography was taken by Mary Beth Rampolla while attending the OVO Montreal premiere and debut of our design!