SAN JOSE (KCBS) – It’s an innovative, multi-media show involving 47 horses and acrobats from around the world performing amazing stunts. Cavalia: A Magical Encounter Between Human and Horse is coming to San Jose July 18, 2012.

Cavalia has traveled across North America and Europe for nine years. It premiered in the Bay Area in 2010, but this will be the first time in San Jose.

One of the founders of the world-famous Cirque du Soleil, Normand Latourelle, is the founder and artistic director of the show and describes the show as an integration between equestrian arts and performing arts that tells the history of the relationship between humans and horses. But, he adds, you don’t need to be a horse person to enjoy the show.

KCBS’ Connie C. Kim talks to Normand Latourelle, founder of Cavalia:

Latourelle, who has been in the business for 40 years, says he didn’t know anything about horses when he first thought of the concept for the show. His philosophy has always been to have an understanding of horses, rather than making horses understand the humans around them.

“When you get to see Cavalia, you feel that special bond between human and horses,” Latourelle describes. “The horses are totally free on stage. This is their playground, we don’t correct them.”

The custom-designed stage is large enough for the horses to run around and play. In some scenes the performers are riding the horses 25 miles per hour while hanging on upside down.

“This is not a circus but more a theatrical experience.”

The 32 artists, acrobats, dancers and riders are from Canada, France, Belgium, the United States, Morocco, Kyrgyzstan, Moldavia, Poland and Russia.

To date, the show has been enjoyed by some 3.5 million people.

“That’s my reward.. every time I go to the show and see 2,000 people standing up at the end and screaming and clapping.. they’re happy and that’s what we consider ourselves, we consider ourselves happiness merchants,” Latourelle shares. “In this difficult world it’s good to bring happiness and joy to this planet.”

See video clips of the show here.

For tickets and more information go to

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