Quebec City Stories and Tips

Be a Circus Freak!

Teddy bear head on roller skates Photo, Quebec City, Quebec

This has got to be the most amazing free event I've heard of! For the past 3 summers, Cirque du Soleil (with its origins in Quebec City) has offered shows to the public 5 nights of the week from late June to the beginning of August. It sounded too good to be true. I had attended Cirque du Soleil in Portland, Oregon, as well as in Tokyo before and knew that tickets could go as high as $250. Still mildly suspicious, I arrived 45 minutes early for the 9:30 pm show at a non-descript venue under the (Dufferin) highway overpass. Doors opened at 9 pm, and I followed the line to the stage. And there I was, standing in the third row, center, at CIRQUE DU SOLEIL. Apparently, these shows are put on as trials before the performers take it worldwide. Yes, there were a couple of slip-ups in the jump roping scene (no big deal) and thankfully, none in the flying acrobatic ones. The combination of a live band, colorful characters, digital media, and an engaging narrative made the show spectacular. I loved how it felt like a "traveling circus" instead of a more formal theatre setting-- you could see the stage structure being supported by the highway overpass. And yes, there were a few bleacher seats to sit on, but it was the feeling of being part of a standing crowd, where dancing to the music and hooting and hollering our appreciation was contagious.

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