In my blog post and video from January about some issues with Cirque du Soleil, I was complaining about three things. 1.) about the hard to impossible to find Wintuk show soundtrack 2.) the unavailability of merchandize, especially the media content (DVDs, CDs etc.) outside the United States and 3.) about the missing tracks on many of the so called official soundtracks of Cirque du Soleil shows.
It is two months later now and I decided to check once more to see if anything changed this my last “rant”.
If you rather watch and listen than reading my blog post, watch my 9 minutes video below, which covers pretty much the same content as I do in my writing below.
Backup Link to video on Vimeo
Issue 1 Reviewed – Where to Buy the Official Wintuk Soundtrack CD
Okay, first to the positive things (bitter sweet actually, because it is not all positive, only partially).
When I checked the CD section of the Cirque online shop (Cirque Boutique), I couldn’t believe my eyes at first.
There it was (see screen shot image to your right), the official soundtrack CD for the show “Wintuk” is now finally also available in the general Cirque du Soleil merchandise online store and not only in that special micro online shop on another web site that they created, just for that one lonely show.
You have to have “United States” selected as ship-to country to get that listing.
You can still buy the official Wintuk soundtrack CD at that special store. Regarding the listing. Also note that the United States version has even a second listing page for music cd releases (see second image on the left). I will get back to that one in a moment.
So I typed “buy official Wintuk soundtrack cd” into the Google search box and checked the results that I got back on my screen. You can look at the screen shot of the Google.com search results page with my comments below.
The number one results is still a torrent with the pirated version of the soundtrack CD. mmmh.
The number two result is an eBay auction listing for the CD. Also not so great, because folks are sometimes abusing the lack of availability or easy access to things to make a quick buck by purchasing the stuff for the original price from the original source that nobody can find and then turn around to sell the same product with hefty profit margins added to it at a place that people are actually able to find.
The number three listing is finally the official special mini store for the Wintuk show, where you can buy the CD without any problems or artificial mark-ups etc. Hallelujah.
This is funny. The number four listing is my blog post from January where I complained about the inability to find the soundtrack hehe. Well, that post has also (just like this one) a link to the CD at the official store. I wonder if my nice and descriptive text links from my Cirque du Soleil 101 primer article and my other blog post had enough “Google Juice” to push the product listing of the CD out of the supplemental search index hell of Google and up into the top of the SERP’s for the terms where it actually should rank number one?
Possible. My blog is getting older and older, more and more traffic and more and more authority and Google PageRank as a consequence of it.
The Cirque Boutique is nowhere to be found at all, but that does not surprise me a bit. I couldn’t even help them with a link to the item there, because last time I checked, deep linking into the Cirque Boutique eShop did not work at all (unless you had a cookie set from a previous visit to the same online shop already, where you selected the correct shipping destination (country), which makes no sense whatsoever). Why would I want to refer people who visited the store already back to the same place again. If they wanted to buy something, then they probably did so already.
Well, until now, the few okay to good listings are surrounded by junk or unrelated stuff, like promo videos on YouTube, Torrents, Torrents, Torrents, a Wikipedia article, the old out of stock Amazon.com marketplace listing of the CD, some forum posts and more Torrents to download the pirated version of the CD in MP3 format.
Issue 2 Reviewed – Cirque du Soleil Merchandise outside the U.S.
If you read the first segment of this post, then you already saw the CD listings for customers from the United States at the Cirque Boutique online store.
The listing shows 20 Music CD releases on two pages, available for purchase.
To your left is a screen shot of the DVD section of the store, also for customers in the United States only. Not too bad, 16 DVDs listed in total, 2 of them unfortunately out of stock, which makes it 14 DVDs available for purchase.
Now I went back, erased my cookie for the store that set the U.S. location and selected India as shipping destination instead.
The prices of the store are still shown in U.S. dollars, but the look and feel of the store changed (different site) and most importantly, the listings of available products changed as well. I did not embed the screen shots. I only linked to them via plain text link. Here they are:
The results were bad, really bad.
The DVD selection is worse that it was last year in September, when I checked the last time. Instead of 5 DVDs available back then, only 4 DVDs were available 7 months later. Nothing compared to the 16 (or 14) DVD releases available for U.S. customers.
The Music CD selection is almost as bad, but just not as bad as the DVD section. It lists 11 CDs, but shows 4 of them as being out of stock = 7 CDs actually available. Not convincing, if you consider that for U.S. customers are 20 CDs available to choose from at the same category.
Cirque du Soleil – Fix This!
Oddities in Cirque Boutique U.S. Listings
1. Mystère CD or Mystère Live CD or Mystère What?
Have a look at the product detail pages screen shots for the two CDs.
I will keep this one short. Look at the screen shots and tell me, if you notice something?
Okay, I am just kidding. They are the same, except for the Image and the Catalog numbers. The real product pages even link to the same music sample files. The CDs are virtually identical, except for the cover and booklet.
So don’t waste your money on both of them.. buy only one of them, unless you are a collector.
2. No Thrilling Ride to Kooza Show DVD
The Cirque Boutique lists the latest show DVD release for “Kooza”, but unfortunately it is out of stock. The release contains two DVDs and the item is sold exclusively through the Cirque du Soleil Boutique. It is not made (officially) available anywhere else.
I purchased the DVD (2 discs) already a while ago and even blogged about it, when I got it. Before the show DVD was released, a “making of” documentary about Kooza was released earlier. The DVD release called “A Thrilling Ride Through Kooza” is only 47 minutes in length.
See screen shot of product detail page for the documentary DVD “A Thrilling Ride Through Kooza”.
The documentary DVD is available for $19 for, which is a not so good price for a rather short making of documentary feature. Like KA Extreme, about the show KA, which is also short like this. They did a better job with “Flow” about the show “O” and “The Mystery of Mystère”, which are each 80 minutes in length or “Lovesick” about the show “Zumanity”, which is 99 minutes in length.
Anyhow, the thing is that the whole 47 minutes documentary that they sell for $19 dollars is included on the second DVD discs with bonus features of the show DVD release for only $10 more. That CD, where you get a lot more bang for your buck is out of stock. Not very good for their own latest DVD show release, which they did not make available for purchase at other large retailers like Amazon.com etc.
If you do not happen to walk by a physical Cirque Store location (in Vegas, Orlando, Tokyo or Macao) where they might have a copy of it left (if you are lucky), your options to get the DVD legally are thinning out quickly.
Guess what, the whole disc set is available for download in ISO format via warez torrents or on Usenet. It will probably not for long that pirated versions will be the only versions that can be found in Google, unless I write a few more blog posts about the DVD release to out-rank them.
Not good. FIX THAT!
That Cirque cannot do much that quickly about missing tracks on soundtrack CD releases is clear.
However, I hope that the OST CD releases for the shows that launched last year in Asia and Las Vegas will become available for purchase soon. The music for the show “Criss Angel – Believe”, which premiered in October in Las Vegas, Nevada, the show “Zaia”, which premiered in Macao, China last August and the show “Zed”, which launched also last October at the Disneyland Tokyo in its custom build theatre.
I hope that Cirque will not show the same attitude that it shows to U.S. content for non-U.S. customers in reverse. I mean that the merchandise for the Asian shows will not become available for purchase to customers outside of Asia (e.G. the United States). It would not surprise me too much, if this happens, but I try to remain optimistic and hope that Cirque will get their act together and fix this problem.
I also hope that the sound tracks will be complete. I will get them, one way or another, if not via purchase from a store officially, then via MP3 download from the Internet, where they will become available with absolute certainty.
Oh Boy, this post became longer than I originally intended. It also contains more stuff than my 10 minutes video. So if you read this post instead of just watching the video, them you got rewarded for hanging in with me :).
But now it is enough! Seriously!
Carsten aka Roy/SAC