We had the chance to see Cirque du Soleil's Ovo about a month back and I enjoyed parts of it tremendously especially the parts on ants and grasshoppers. The clown acts were a little over the top I thought. Later I also had a chance to watch Alegria on DVD and came away thinking that Ovo was much better. Alegria also seems to have evolved since the DVD was made. The website indicates that there are now two contortionists instead of one.
I searched online for some literature on life with Cirque du Soleil but found very little. The clips at the end of the Alegria DVD gave the impression that all's well but I was more interested in things like how long do performers stay on with the show, what the training and practices are like, what it's like to raise a family on the road, etc. (Some information is available on Cirque's web site, including education for minors, benefits, etc - no 401(k).)
The Wikipedia entry was very informative for me. It seemed to indicate that as much of Cirque du Soleil's success might have been due to luck as it may have been due to hard work of Guy Laliberté.
I'm looking forward to their next show. This show played at the National Harbor and we ended up staying overnight at the Hampton Inns. The hotel was new so it was a nice place. In retrospect, waiting to take the bus back from the site to the hotel probably took longer than driving out of the parking lot although it was nice not to have to navigate home after a late night.