Creative Team


Born in Leeds, United Kingdom, Wayne Fowkes now lives in Austria with his family. He began his career as a singer and dancer in London’s West End, where he acted in several big shows. His career path led him to explore choreography and artistic direction, among other things, for television productions in United Kingdom and Europe. At age 30, he became resident director for Andrew Lloyd Webber. In 2000, Wayne took on a huge London venue, the Millenium Dome, as artistic coordinator. The same year he became the artistic director for Notre-Dame de Paris, also overseeing its subsequent adaptations in eight different languages. Shortly after, in 2004, he became artistic director for the musical Don Juan. In 2007, he directed his very first production, Butterflies, presented in Beijing. For Wayne, working with horses in a creative environment is a totally new adventure and an eye-opening experience.


Born in Toulouse, France, Benjamin Aillaud has been constantly evolving in the equestrian world since childhood. At the age of 6, he bought his first horse and began jumping, vaulting, Western riding, dressage and carriage riding for pleasure. From this moment on, his objectives and philosophy began to take shape: training versatile horses that will enjoy and maintain their interest in performing. At the age of 37, his career is already impressive. Twice vice-champion of the world and four-time champion of France in four-horse carriage, he has also directed equestrian shows. Since 2009, he has acted as equestrian director for Cavalia’s two productions.


The versatile stage designer Guillaume Lord works in theatre, circus, dance, variety shows, rock concerts and musicals in Canada and abroad. Over the past 15 years, he has worked with Serge Denoncourt (Hosanna), Marie Chouinard (Le nombre d'Or), Jean Grand-Maître (Ballets de l’Opéra de Paris) and Gilles Maheu for whom he designed the scenography of Zaia (Cirque du Soleil). He also designed the sets for Nomade and Rain (Cirque Éloize). With Cavalia, he takes up the challenge of creating the set-design for a much quicker and more physical star performer.


The visual world created for Cavalia was conceived by Geodezik, a multimedia company specializing in video content production and system design for stage shows, public events and permanent installations. The Montreal-based company also acts as a consultant for various stage and architectural designs. Geodezik offers a comprehensive vision in multimedia, from project design to final spectacle, by creating original content and new technology with the help of a community of visual artists and stage and new media professionals. Numerous artists have relied on Geodezik’s expertise for their stage and video concepts, including Justin Timberlake, Cher, Pink, Bette Midler, Cirque du Soleil, Tina Turner, Taylor Swift, Usher, Katy Perry and Britney Spears among others. The visual world designed uniquely for Cavalia is meant to help bring to life the world of the show, all the while complimenting the lighting effects, scenography and staged numbers of the production.


Michel Cusson is a critically acclaimed, world-renowned musician, music director and film music composer. Initially trained as a jazz-rock guitarist at the prestigious music departments of Montreal’s McGill University and Boston’s Berklee College of music, Cusson transitioned into film composition in the early 90’s. Cusson is the founder of the jazz-rock group UZEB. The global breadth and quality of Cusson’s melodic contributions (25 films and 19 television series) and his musical versatility has established him as one of the most sought-after composers in the world. Cusson also composed music for many mega-shows all over the world. Two equestrian productions: Cavalia touring worldwide for more than 10 years, and Odysseo a new creation. In 2006, he was given the illustrious Chevalier de la Pléiade distinction, for outstanding cultural achievement for serving the ideals of cooperation and friendship of the Francophonie.


Michèle Hamel began her career as a costume designer in 1977, after meeting Canadian film director Gilles Carles. Since then, Michèle Hamel has been credited in over 50 Canadian film and TV productions, and her talent has been widely recognized with numerous awards. Together, these uniquely talented and experienced designers have left their mark on the artistic scene across Canada.

Manon Desmarais has been in the business for more than three decades. She got her start as the prop master for different theatres, including the world renowned Opéra de Montréal. It has been more than 15 years since she started creating costumes for circus performers and shows. She played an integral role in launching Les 7 doigts de la main and still serves as the costume creator.  Cavalia marks yet another milestone in her distinguished career.


Choreographer Alain Gauthier collaborated on numerous other large-scale productions. His expertise in acrobatic and aerial stunts proves invaluable. Some 2000 performances gathered under the Cirque du Soleil banner, Alain is also distinguished in his research developing acrobatic movement that Cirque du Soleil celebrates as their lasting legacy upon today’s audiences. His experience in staging and choreography comes with an innovation and familiarity in large scale shows on stages across the world, from Las Vegas to Paris and Shang Hai, including consultation on aerial concepts for the Black Eye Peas 2009 tour. Alain brings his unique stamp to Cavalia, one of the largest productions in the world that takes his intimate knowledge in staging and choreographic art forms to showcase them on the stage with a cast of highly skilled horses and humans.


A hair stylist and designer with many years' experience, his great reputation and artistic ability have earned him seven nominations to the Gala des prix Gémeaux, including winning the prize for "Best makeup and hair design", two years in a row. Louis Bond is pursuing his career in theatre, on television sets, in the movies and recently in the american production "Miroir miroir". To add to his long list of accomplishments is his creative involvement with American magazines "Vanity Dades" and "CACRS Puerto Rico", as well as "Notre-Dame de Paris" and "Mil feuilles" with the group Les éternels pigistes. Louis Bond joined the Cavalia family in 2006.


For over 30 years, Alain Lortie has been living his passion through his work and his reputation is well established in Canada, as well as in France and Asia. Through his associations with multidisciplinary artists, he lit Notre-Dame de Paris, Starmania, Cavalia and a few Cirque du Soleil shows. Alain has also actively participated in the Festival Montréal en Lumières. Lortie has won numerous industry awards, including a Dora Mavor Moore Award in Toronto.