Aerial performance group, including former Homer resident, to perform at Salmonfest

Quixotic is an aerial-performance dance group based in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo courtesy of Quixotic)
Quixotic is an aerial-performance dance group based in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo courtesy of Quixotic)

Quixotic, an aerial performance group, will perform at Salmonfest, a three-day music festival that occurs the first weekend of August at the Kenai Peninsula Fairgrounds, Ninilchik.

This year, the festival will showcase an artist who grew up in Homer, Mica Thomas who helps produce lighting for an aerial group from Kansas City, Missouri.

Thomas said, describing Quixotic as creating an experience. “It’s kind of where you’d go to watch a performing arts piece mixed with a concert, and how you merge all those things together to create spectacle and broaden the imagination,” Thomas said.

Quixotic will perform Saturday, Aug. 6, at midnight during the festival, and their performance is scheduled to go until 2 am.

Thomas and his business partner, Anthony Magliano, are the producers of Quixotic. Magliano is the founder and artistic director of the group, whereas Thomas mostly focuses on the lighting aspects of the show.

This year, Quixotic is one of four headliners for the Kenai’s annual Salmonfest.

Jim Stearns, the director and producer of Salmonfest, says that this year has one of the strongest line-ups the festival has had yet.

“Indigo Girls are the top act, although Trampled by Turtles is a very, very close second,” Stearns said. “They’ve been on a mediocre rise since they were here (at Salmonfest) three years ago.

Although Thomas is the only member of the group from Alaska, this is not the group’s first performance in the state. Quixotic did an Alaska Tour two years ago, and performed in Fairbanks, Anchorage and at the Mariner Theater, Homer.

Getting the entire group and all of their equipment up to Alaska requires a lot of work, Thomas says, so they can only bringing a few members of their cast and crew with them. They even had to ship a portable aerial truss all the way from Kansas City to make this performance happen.

The group is bringing some great aerial performers, live music from percussionist Simon Huntly and violinist Shane Borth and some light to accompany the darkness of the midnight show, Thomas said.

“We’re doing lots of fire performances as well within the show we’re bringing to Salmonfest,” Thomas said. “So we wanted to make sure that we could work with kind of having darkness around to help make all the fire performance shine a little brighter.”

The fire acts will be integrated into the performance, alongside aerial performers and dancers, who will perform in front of a canvas screen that Thomas will produce the light shows on during the performance.

Quixotic are comparable to the famous Cirque du Soleil, whom the group have collaborated with in the past. Thomas says that he’s looking forward to sharing the Quixotic experience with fellow Alaskans.

“I mean I’m excited for the whole festival,” Thomas said. “I’ve never been able to go to the festival before, and I’ve been hearing about it for years and years and years, and so I’m really excited to just go check out the whole experience as a whole.”

Quixotic also is providing aerial-teaching classes in Homer, Aug. 9-13, in the Mat Room at the High School.

You can find more information on how to sign up for the classes by calling the Homer Council on the Arts at 907-235-4288, or by visiting their website at www.homerart.org.

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