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Saved by a song: Calgary performers have fun portraying real-life cougar encounter

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WATCH ABOVE: What should you do if you suddenly find yourself face to face with a cougar? Here’s Gil Tucker with some Calgarians setting out a solution in song – Feb 22, 2016

Opera may not be everyone’s ‘cup of tea’, and you can apparently include cougars in that camp.

Members of Calgary’s ‘Cowtown Opera’ are now enjoying showing how that works in a new cabaret show they’re creating.

It’s based on a real incident that happened in Colorado in 2014.

A woman hiking on her own suddenly looked up to find a cougar stalking her.

She tried frightening it off with a branch, but after that didn’t work, she started singing opera at it.

The cougar continued following her for a while, but she kept singing and it eventually did the trick – the cougar backed off and left the area.

The Cowtown performers are re-creating the encounter, drawing on some experiences of their own in the mountains.

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Singer Jacques Arsenault said “When I was hiking in Waterton I sure did some operatic high notes, to keep away any bears.”

Barbara Thorson, who plays the cougar, added “This is a training video for everyone that goes hiking in Kananaskis or the Banff area.”

Cowtown Opera’s cabaret show runs from Thursday February 25th to Sunday February 28th at Festival Hall in Calgary’s Inglewood neighbourhood.

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