Q: Where does the name "Cabiri" come from?
A: The Kabeiroi were chthonic deities worshipped by a mystery cult that migrated to the northern Aegean region over 2,000 years ago, possibly from Anatolia. In Phrygian culture, the Kabeiroi were a form of fire djinn. Today, the Cabiri are performers who depict stories from ancient myth and folklore through physical theater, dance, puppetry, fire performance, stilts, and aerial arts.
Q: What is performative mythology?
A: Performative mythology, a term coined by Artistic Director John Murphy, is the act of depicting myth and folklore through the performative arts. Not to be confused with verbal retelling of myth through storytelling, performative mythology is the generation of a moving diorama that tells a dynamic tale and invites the viewer into the realm of the divine. Performative mythology is the induction of the shamanic mysterium tremendum that comes with the trance of the hierophant.
Q: How much training does it take to be a Cabiri performer?
A: Our principal cast trains and rehearses at least 20 hours per week, 16 of which is in the studio working as an ensemble. Additionally, company members spend a great deal of time outside the studio studying dance, acrobatics and physical theater.
Q: How do the Cabiri become so flexible and strong?
A: Our warm-up and training techniques draw from a variety of sources including yoga, dynamic stretching, PNF, and other fitness systems, but it is primarily based upon the guidance and instruction of our world-class coaches and ongoing advice from our troupe physiotherapist. Each performer within the Cabiri has their own customized system for optimal physical health, strength and flexibility. Students who participate in our aerial arts education program have the opportunity to learn many of our fitness routines. Visit our Classes page for more details about our instructional programs for students of all ages.
Q: Do your artists get scared performing aerial arts, stilts and fire dancing?
A: The Cabiri’s purpose is storytelling. What our artists do often inspires awe and disbelief among audience members, and some of our feats at times appear impossible and dangerous. The reality is that everything we present on stage has been rehearsed to a degree that we are quite relaxed and able to focus upon the characters and stories we bring to life onstage.
Q: Who engineers the technical elements of your productions?
A: The Cabiri use ETCP-certified riggers, structural and mechanical engineers, and certified technicians in all aspect of our creation. The Cabiri is recognized internationally as having production quality and safety standards at or above any other company in the industry.
Q: What is the music used in your productions?
A: The Cabiri has a variety of talented musicians who create accompaniment for our performances. Many songs are created especially for Cabiri productions; other songs are existing compositions that fit well with our productions. In general, we strive to use original works whenever possible. Show programs usually contain a complete bibliography of music from the production; we encourage our audiences to support the musicians with whom we collaborate.
Q: Are Cabiri shows family friendly?
A: Tales from mythology and folklore are not for the faint of heart, but we endeavor to create productions that are enjoyable and suitable for audience members of all ages. In general, children and adults alike are inspired, enchanted and completely in awe of the beautiful spectacle we create. The annual Ghost Game cabaret show (performed during Halloween) is the only show that is specifically restricted to an adult audience.