Itsuko Noto lives in Japan, which means it takes her a minimum of 12 hours to fly to Las Vegas. But at least twice a year she grabs her passport and makes the journey to Sin City for intensive Cirque du Soleil immersion–two shows a night, 14 total per week.
Although she sees nearly all of the company’s seven different Vegas shows (except Criss Angel’s “Mindfreak Live”), as well as many of its other shows around the U.S., Asia, and Europe, “O” is her mainstay. First opened in Vegas in 1998, “O” is Cirque’s famous water show, probably its most ambitious, given its clever and beautiful incorporation of a 1.5 million-gallon swimming pool that, at certain points, seems to magically disappear.
Every night she’s in Vegas, Noto makes her way over to the grand 1,800-seat theater at the Bellagio for “O’s” late show. All told, she takes in 10 “O” performances a week, and over the course of her career as an all-star Cirque fan, she’s seen it well over 100 times.
“It touches my deepest emotion,” Noto tells me by email. “I feel the tears welling up at the end of the show every single time.”
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