OK, everybody already knows that Cirque du Soleil is not your average circus experience. Sure, there's a big top, but instead of questionably treated animals doing spirit-destroying stunts beneath it, there're incredibly talented acrobats, dancers, gymnasts, contortionists and every other sort of body artist doing death-defying feats that more than establish the heightened spirit, athleticism and creativity of the whole spectacle. That being said, there's always some bizarre plotline that goes with a Cirque show, and Corteo, Cirque's current touring production, is no different. For example, I know every time I think of going to the circus, I immediately think of a clown imagining his own funeral procession. But press materials assure that "the show highlights the strength and fragility of the clown, as well as his wisdom and kindness" and that he and the carnival-like cortège are, in fact, "watched over by quietly caring angels." Thank goodness. It just wouldn't have been real circus fun without some time spent analyzing mortality. But then, I suppose that's the magic of Cirque du Soleil: With enough acrobats hurling at you on vibrant ribbons and rings, you have the option to never even realize you've just been to an international clown's funeral. The Corteo show will go on Friday through March 11 under the Grand Chapiteau at Fair Park. Tickets are $40 to $75 (adults) and $28 to $52.50 (children). Call 1-800-678-5440 or visit cirquedusoleil.com.
Fridays, Saturdays, 4 p.m.; Tuesdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 1 & 5 p.m.; March 7-10, 8 p.m.; March 8-10, 4 p.m. Starts: Feb. 9. Continues through March 11