REVIEW | Marvel Universe Live turns spectacular stunts into theatre

31 January 2020 - 00:00 By Busang Senne

The action-packed Marvel Universe Live is undoubtedly something superhero movie fans should not miss. 

The performance features the Earth’s mightiest heroes like you’ve never seen them before — in the flesh and bending the laws of physics like a Cirque du Soleil of superhero theatre.

The dynamic production, showing at the Sun Arena in Times Square, Menlyn Maine, meshes acrobatics and innovative tech to tell the story of 25 Marvel characters, including the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy, through flame throwing and gravity-defying stunts.

Iron Man joins his team of avenging heroes at Marvel Universe Live.
Iron Man joins his team of avenging heroes at Marvel Universe Live.
Image: Sebabatso Mosamo

“It’s an epic experience with lots of pyrotechnics, visual effects, projection, motorcycle acts, aerial rigging acts ... this is the only venue in SA that this production can fit in,” said Willem van der Walt, technical and production director at Marvel SA.

“It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience. There’s only one of these shows in the world, so it’s pretty much now or never ... It’s an epic extravaganza with your favourite Marvel characters,” he said.  

The Guardians of the Galaxy join the Avengers in a battle against time for the coveted Wand of Watoomb.
The Guardians of the Galaxy join the Avengers in a battle against time for the coveted Wand of Watoomb.
Image: Sebabatso Mosamo

The production takes the Marvel cinematic universe and translates it on to the stage, but instead of hunting down infinity stones or retrieving cosmic cubes as seen in some of the main themes of the movies, the heroes’ mission is to save an ancient relic called the Wand of Watoomb from the clutches of some of the franchise’s most nefarious villains.

Captain America, Spider-Man, Black Widow and Black Panther work together to prevent the evil Loki from stealing an ancient artefact.
Captain America, Spider-Man, Black Widow and Black Panther work together to prevent the evil Loki from stealing an ancient artefact.
Image: Sebabatso Mosamo

For the first time in SA, the touring Marvel Age of Heroes turns the fantasy of seeing the Avengers assemble into a sensory spectacle, complemented by Marvel fans' favourite characters, light shows, costume design complete with authentic prosthetics, video installations and an immersive feel that makes the performance interactive.

Black Widow and Nebula battle it out with spectacular pyrotechnics at Marvel Universe Live.
Black Widow and Nebula battle it out with spectacular pyrotechnics at Marvel Universe Live.
Image: Sebabatso Mosamo

But did the larger-than-life characters on stage live up to their screen counterparts? Seeing performers not only act, but perform motorcycle stunts, soar on barely-there cable wires and somersault with the grace of gazelles is enough to earn the Marvel stamp of approval.

Marvel Universe Live is on at the Sun Arena in Pretoria until February 9.


Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.