Adem stars in ‘Cirque Dreams Holidaze’

Abdurazak Reshid Adem is excited to be showcasing his unique talents as a juggler to Pittsburgh audiences during the “Cirque Dreams Holidaze” show at Heinz Hall this week.

“People can expect to see some really different things that are based on the holidays. People will really be surprised,” said Adem, 27.

Adem, who is one of two jugglers in the show, will be playing a lumberjack ornament in the show.


He recently toured Germany, Austria, Holland, England and Italy showcasing his dizzying juggling tricks as a bounce juggler with the show, “Afrika-Afrika.” Adem was born in Nazareth, Ethiopia and began juggling 15 years ago at the age of 12.

“When I juggle I relax,” Adem said. “Juggling is about mathematics. You have to calculate how high you throw the balls and how you cross them. When I juggle it takes away the stress.”

Adem juggles nine balls and performs various tricks throughout the two-hour show.

Cirque Dreams Holidaze comes from the ground breaking Broadway hit, “Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy.” “Cirque Dreams Holidaze” is created by and directed by Neil Goldberg and is an original musical extravaganza that centers around Christmas ornaments coming to life as costumed characters who perform astonishing feats that showcase pageantry with gingerbread men flipping through the air, toy soldiers skillfully marching on thin wires snowmen balancing  and reindeer soaring high above a winter wonderland landscape.

“The audience will recognize the characters and the characters come to life and tell their own story,” explained “Cirque Dreams Holidaze” company manager, Jenn Sierra. “Everyone will enjoy the show. The kids are going to love the show and the parents will marvel at the acrobatics. This is really colorful and engaging and this is something that people have never seen.”

There are more than 30 acrobats and more than  100 costumes in this installment of the Cirque line of performances, which Goldberg started in 1993. The musical score will include carole favorites like “O Holy Night” and “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” in addition to original music.

“Cirque Dreams Holidaze follows in the spirit of the Cirque Dreams brand vision. Our dramatic and elaborate style of presenting Broadway theatrics with influences of European, American and inventive circus artistry continues to transcend imagination, appeal to everyone and offer high quality, affordable entertainment,” Goldberg said.

“Cirque Dreams Holidaze” is being presented by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, a non-profit organization whose mission is the cultural and economic development of Pittsburgh’s 14-block Cultural District.

The show will run from Dec. 21-26 at Heinz Hall, Downtown.

(Tickets range in prices from $22 to $62. Show times are: 7:30 p.m. Tuesday; 1 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday; 1 p.m. Dec. 24; and 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. on Dec. 26. For more information call 412-392-4900 or visit


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