Sep. 19, 2012 - Issue #883: Best of Edmonton 2012
Afternoon tea takes to new heights for Firefly Aerial Arts' second annual High Tea mixer and fundraiser.
Guests will be able to sip on high-quality tea courtesy of Acquired Tastes Tea Co, imbibe in champagne, indulge in delectable pastries from Duchess Bake Shop and nibble on finger sandwiches, with a little twist. Firefly's own aerial artists will be dangling from the rafters as they serve guests.
The idea was sparked when Firefly creative director Annie Dugan discovered shopping bags full of tea cups in her old warehouse.
"My first thought was, 'This is junk, what are we doing storing this? The only thing we could possibly do with this is have high tea.' As soon as that came out of my mouth, I just immediately realized that that was ripe for an aerial company to do," explains Duggan, who celebrated her 25th year in circus performing this month.
For the last three to four weeks, artists have been practicing balancing trays while being suspended in different positions and rotating within their harnesses. It was a challenge, but Dugan says figuring out the logistics of it all was also the fun part of preparation. Trays haven't proven to be an issue, but there is still the challenge of pouring champagne while suspended.
"You have to figure out how can you hang upside down holding on by your arm or your leg and still operate a bottle of champagne," Dugan says.
In addition to being served in a rather unconventional setting, guests will be able to enjoy roving entertainment, tea leaf readings and a few surprises.
"I just had the impression last year that our patrons were waiting for something, like they were eating and drinking and looking around, but I just had the feeling, given who we are, that they were expecting something, so this year they're going to get something," she laughs.
The event not only raises necessary funds for Firefly's upcoming production of Zodiac Arrest in February, but raises awareness of aerial arts.
"We use space differently than anybody else in town, so we bring visual and physical dimensions to our work that is unique. The physical nature of our work appeals to cross-demographcis galore. It's not like we have an age range, we don't have social limitations—you know, rich or poor—our work is accessible to everyone," Dugan notes of the company, which moved into its own space in April and offers an extended variety of aerial arts classes for those looking to try their hand at the craft.
Sun, Sep 23 (2 pm)
Presented by Firefly Theatre
Transalta Arts Barns, $50 vueweekly.com comments: powered by Disqus
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