Montreal Completely Circus | Circus over three steel giants

The Montréal Complètement Cirque Festival will offer one of the greatest projects in its history this summer with the installation of three giant structures in the city center, which will serve as the stage for as many circus performances.

Posted yesterday at 2:46 pm.

Stephanie Morin

Stephanie Morin

These man-made structures will be located in three locations in the expanded city center: Jardins Gamelin, Place Ville Marie and Parc Vinet (located a stone’s throw from the Atwater Market). Nearly 16 meters high, each of these “Giants” will host a different circus company, namely Cirque Éloize, Les 7 Doigts and Machine de cirque. A total of 60 free performances will be offered throughout the duration of the festival.

The Montréal Complètement Cirque festival and TOHU, which produces Les Géants, received $ 2.8 million from Tourisme Montréal for this project, which should contribute to the revitalization of the downtown area hit hard by the pandemic.

“Les Géants is currently under construction in Varennes and will start assembling in June,” said Nadine Marchand, director of the Montréal Complètement Cirque. “The performances presented in each country will be different, but related to a common theme, namely the cultural giants that have marked the history of Quebec. All three companies have chosen very human, very organic approaches. Music will also be very present at each of the shows. »

For Cirque Éloize, who will be performing at Jardins Gamelin, water will be a central element of the show.

Jean-Guy Legault, director, explains: “Our giant will have his feet in the water. The show will bring together several styles, colors and sounds, which form the great Montreal mosaic, especially with the presence of a singer. We got a lot of inspiration from the giants that brought Quebec culture beyond our borders. »

Les 7 Doigts will benefit from a central space at Place Ville Marie. The staging was provided by Isabelle Chassé, Patrick Léonard and Samuel Tétreault. “One of the first questions we asked ourselves was to know what qualities are needed to become a giant,” says Patrick Léonard. It takes perseverance, passion, sensitivity… ”


Isabelle Chassé and Patrick Léonard, co-directors for Les 7 Doigts

Because human emotions run through the heart, the company has chosen to give its steel giant a huge heart that will be assembled in seven scenes. “Ten artists will create beautiful group paintings,” adds Isabelle Chassé. For music, we can count on the talent of Camille Poliquin and Laurence Lafond-Beaulne [duo derrière le groupe Milk & Bone]. »

Finally, Machine de cirque will set up its Giant at Parc Vinet, in a green setting made up of trees and stones. “It will be a space where nature will regain its rights,” explains Maxime Laurin, who signed the staging with actor Alex Trahan. “It will be a pioneering journey marked by the singer Inès Talbi. »

To revive downtown life

As is well known, the city center has suffered greatly from the pandemic. But with the Giants, Yves Lalumière, president and CEO of Tourisme Montréal, hopes to find some of the animation that prevailed in the city’s central sector before the health crisis. “This is the most important project at the strategic level and it is also the one that has received the largest share of the budget allocated for the revival of tourism in Montreal. It is hoped that with their attractiveness, the giants will contaminate restaurants and businesses in the city center, for which the pandemic has been extremely painful. The project also confirms Montreal’s location as the world circus capital. »

The question that remains is whether these steel giants will be used for more than a year. This is what Nadine Marchand wants: “What we would like is for these giants to become a brand image for Montreal. But we need to find funding. Yves Lalumière has the same argument: “We would like to be able to use these structures for three to five years. But for this it would be necessary that the environment [des affaires] get more involved. »

The performances of the Giants will be presented from the 7th to the 17th of July. There will be two shows a day, at 18:00 and 21:30.

Learn more

  • 14,061 kg
    The weight of each of the giants. Including the scene, this figure climbs to 21772 kg. A total of 45,400 kg of painted steel will be used.

    16 m
    The height of each structure, for a width of 9 m.

    source: Montreal entirely circus

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