Cirque du Soleil's new touring show Kooza opened to press last night (8 January 2013) at the Royal Albert Hall in one of the first major openings of the year.

The show, which premiered in April 2007, is billed as "a return to the origins of Cirque du Soleil, combining two circus traditions - acrobatic performance and the art of clowning".

Among the showpiece acts is an "unprecedented approach" to the High Wire and a "breathtaking" Wheel of Death – an act that Cirque du Soleil has never before presented under the big top.

Guests attending the show on opening night included Craig Revel Horwood, Olivia Williams, Fay Ripley as well as Esther Rantzen, Elaine Paige, Arlene Phillips, Natasha Kaplinsky, Andrew Castle, Ronni Ancona, Angela Griffin, Jon Culshaw, Darcey Bussell, Steven Berkoff, Steve Redgrave, Mark Foster, David Jason, Phillip Schofield, Carol Vorderman, Jeremy Piven, Ben Kingsley, and Katherine Jenkins.

PHOTOS BY DAN WOOLLER FOR WHATSONSTAGE.COM