The best circus artists in the world, wildly creative new shows and high-flying outdoor acrobatics make MONTRÉAL COMPLÈTEMENT CiRQUE one of the most breathtaking family-friendly festivals of summer.

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Astounding sights for all

Entertaining audiences of all ages with fabulous feats, compelling stories and surprises by the minute, the 9th edition of MONTRÉAL COMPLÈTEMENT CiRQUE turns the city into a circus from July 5 to 15. This year's main stage shows transport us into their many incredible worlds. Renowned company Les 7 Doigts’s Sisters is an enchanting and darkly funny fairy tale set in a magical forest and steeped in the music of Lhasa de Sela. Charming Australian acrobatic company Gravity & Other Myths tests the limits of the human body in Backbone. Company 2 gets joyously messy in jazz cabaret meets rogue circus show Scotch & Soda. Skillful jester Jamie Adkins returns with a new balancing act and a tuba player in Espièglerie. Argentinian dancer-actor-acrobat duo Un Poyo Rojo gets steamy in a tongue-in-cheek courtship ritual. French acrobat duo La Volte falls and keeps on falling in Chute! And babies (and their parents) get treated to an adorable circus just for them in La marche du crabe's aerial ballet Le Mobile.

Free open-air performances

Making circus even more accessible, the festival takes to the city streets for 11 days. Every night on the impressive 360-degree stage at Place Émilie-Gamelin, see new creation Phénix, director Anthony Venisse's story of the never-ending cycle of life, told in acrobatics, Cyr wheel, dance, juggling and aerial feats. The dozens of acrobats of Les MINUTES COMPLÈTEMENT CiRQUE return for open-air performances all along St-Denis Street in the Quartier Latin – also where you can try out the tight-wire, trapeze, silks, aerial yoga and other circus apparatus. It's all about building human pyramids and towers at Old Montréal's Pointe-à-Callière museum, where Castellers de Montréal performs and holds workshops on July 15. Downtown's Complexe Desjardins hosts circus shows, parades, family workshops, a mini train and more from July 10 to 14, and Circus Hors Piste combines circus arts and social inclusion on July 14 outside Beaudry metro in the Village.


Friendly neighbourhood circus

Spend some time exploring different neighbourhoods in Montréal during MONTRÉAL COMPLÈTEMENT CiRQUE's “les Quartiers” weekends and evenings. Catch free outdoor circus shows L’Envers by energetic Québec-Swiss duo Ici’Bas and Truck Stop: La grande traversée out of Machine de Cirque's multi-stage caravan, play on local company Moulin à vent's acrobatic structures and see pop-up performances by National Circus School students at Station F-MR along the Lachine Canal on July 8, at Parc La Fontaine's Théâtre de Verdure on July 11, at the Esplanade Financière Sun Life on July 13, at La TOHU circus centre from July 14 to 15, and in more wide-open neighbourhood spaces throughout the festival.

Robyn Fadden

Robyn Fadden, blogger

Robyn Fadden is a Montréal-based writer and editor who searches out city secrets, new bands, life-changing art and things to do with her perpetually active kid. Robyn has covered major events for HOUR, MUTEK, ARTINFO, CKUT 90.3FM and more.

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