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Circus act emulates city legend

A CANADIAN circus group wowed visitors yesterday by arriving at the Plaza of America through a giant "tunnel."

The circus show was specially created for Montreal Day at the Expo to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Sister City relationship between the city and Shanghai.

Montreal Day also marked the grand opening of Espace Montreal in the Urban Best Practices Area in Expo's Zone E.

Montreal was chosen for the UBPA for its success in turning a 20,000-square- meter wide and 70-meter deep quarry-cum-landfill into a public park.

Montreal Mayor Gerald Tremblay said the example proved that a mistake could be changed for the better with wisdom and creativity.

"We can only achieve a better future when people realize their responsibility to make a change," Tremblay said.

The 30-minute circus show, "11,373 Kilometers to Celebrate Friendship" by Cirque Eloize, is based on a Montreal legend about a man who tunnels all the way through the earth to emerge on the other side in China.

It is Cirque Eloize's first performance in China's mainland.

"China was like a far-away dream world when I was a kid," said circus artistic director Jeannot Painchaud.

"And almost every kid had dreamed about arriving here through a tunnel," he added.

Canadian violinist Angele Dubeau also performed a concert at the Citizen Square.


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