An Ode to Elsie Reford, performed by Les 7 doigts de la main

On August 24th and 25th, 2012, the world renowned circus troupe, Les 7 doigts de la main are coming to the Reford Gardens for a magical outdoor performance of acrobatics and music celebrating the legacy of Elsie Reford.

thumb-qualiaQualia is a new circus performance by Les 7 doigts de la main and it is sure to capture the imagination of the audience as it transforms and translates Reford Gardens into a landscape of poetry.

The brainchild of Viveka Melki, executive director of Heritage Lower Saint Lawrence, Qualia is inspired by the flower most associated with the Reford Gardens: “From the first time I saw the blue poppy in a photograph, I could not get enough of it, until l had managed to recreate it in every format, be it text, or image… or circus. Qualia is a philosophy around light perception. How each of us sees the blue of the flower is completely unique from anyone else – just as what the poppy represents is unique to each individual” says Melki.

One of the most notable specimens of the Reford Gardens is the Himalayan blue poppy. “Elsie Reford’s essence and that of the blue poppy will be captured beautifully by these uniquely talented artists,” commented Alexander Reford of the Reford Gardens. “It has been a thrill to work with the creative team putting on this show that is definitely not to be missed.”

A joint collaboration between Les Jardins de Métis/Reford Gardens, Heritage Lower Saint Lawrence and Les 7 doigts de la main, Qualia is a forty minute performance by eight artists consisting of nine acts, each highlighting a moment of Elsie Reford’s life journey and creation of the gardens.

Qualia was created to celebrate the contribution that Elsie Reford and her family has had on the local economy and culture of the region for the past 125 years. It is also a featured event in this year’s 50th anniversary celebrations as, although Elsie Reford began working on the Gardens in the 1920s, it was not until 1962 that her gardens were opened to the public. This forever changed the landscape and tourism economy of the Gaspésie and the Lower St. Lawrence.

Qualia will be performed on Friday, August 24, (at 8 pm) and Saturday, August 25, 2012 (at 4 pm) at les Jardins de Metis/Reford Gardens. Tickets are available as of June 15th 2012 at the ticket booth at Les Jardins de Métis, from Metro grocery stores in Mont-Joli, Rimouski, Matane and Amqui and on-line at www.qualia.jardinsdemetis.com. Tickets are $25 and $5 for children 13 and under. For more informationplease call 418-775-2222.

This production of Qualia is made possible with the generous support of the Canada Council for the Arts, Heritage Lower Saint Lawrence, Les Jardins de Métis / Reford Gardens, Tortuga Films and Rouge 100.3 FM and Groupe TVA Québécor média.

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