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Posts by Robyn Fadden

Music, food and dancing in the streets at OUMF Festival

September may mean back to school but it doesn’t mean summer festival season is over yet in Montréal – the  OUMF Festival of live music (this year starring DJ Jazzy Jeff and Skratch Bastid!), breakdancing, art and performance throws a free, three-day street party for students and everyone else who knows that sunshine and warm nights don’t end in August. With two stages and more music and activities than ever, the 6th edition of OUMF takes over St-Denis Street in the Latin Quarter from September 7 to 10, turning the street into a pedestrian-only zone between Sherbrooke and Sainte-Catherine in the Quartier des Spectacles. Along with live music, expect to see theatrical circus antics by troupe Cirquantique, friendly sports and game competitions, and the pavement transformed into a canvas for street artists of all ages. This year, OUMF even has its own beer, courtesy of 3 Brasseurs! On stage more than 20 bands play, programmed by the M FOR MONTREAL festival (held annually in November), make every night one to remember. This year, hip hop DJ legends DJ Jazzy Jeff and Skratch Bastid play back-to-back, amazing with their spinning skills and music selections.  Stick around for more great music from… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: August 12 to 18

Relax the way Montrealers do in August with outdoor classical music concerts and film screenings, set your kids free at family-focused events, or party like a Montrealer at Montréal Pride and the Fashion & Design Festival. And definitely eat like a Montrealer – we’ve got recommendations. Music for all ages Classical music enthusiasts of all ages will love the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal Couche-Tarde Classical Spree, August 10-13: 30 affordable concerts at Place des Arts starting with Kent Nagano conducting the OSM in Chariots of Fire, plus matinée shows for kids, free activities and two free outdoor concerts: Mozart’s Magic Flute opera on Aug. 12 at 7 pm, and four orchestras performing in Spotlight on Youth on Aug. 13 at 10:30 am. Make your own music just by swinging: outdoor art installation 21 Swings is back until Sept. 5 outside Place des Arts. The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts transforms a side street into Toulouse-Lautrec’s Belle Époque on Aug. 13 at noon, featuring Cancan dancers and music by the Alex Francoeur jazz trio. La Tohu circus centre hosts FALLA, a free event of world music, circus acts and kids activities, Aug. 11-13. And the Olympic Park hosts kids event Carnaval estival on Aug. 13. Montréal Pride… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: August 5 to 11

August in Montréal means it’s time to relax a little even while festival season keeps the energy high. This week we’ve got classical, metal, electronic dance music, anime and First Peoples festivals along with the start of Montréal Pride and the Olympics – plus all the food and drink to match. Festival pride Classical music meets the Olympic spirit this week at the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal’s Couche-Tard Classical Spree main event on August 10: free, outdoor show Galaxy of Heroes pays tribute to the 40th anniversary of Montréal’s 1976 Summer Olympics, at Olympic Park – music enthusiasts also won’t want to miss the Spree’s many affordable and abundant concerts, August 10-13 in the Quartier des Spectacles. Traditional music and hip hop, video and film, art and theatre made by Aboriginal artists take the spotlight as the Présence Autochtone Montréal First Peoples Festival, August 3-10 in and around the Quartier des Spectacles – evening shows include Innu singer Shauit on August 5 and Soirée ÉlectroChoc on August 6. Montréal Pride celebrates its 10th edition with parties, community and art events, cabaret shows, parades and more, August 8-14. For more festival fun, including Heavy Montréal and ÎleSoniq, see our live music section below. Fun and games The world… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: July 29 to August 4

Non-stop live music, world-class comedy and entertainment for all ages make Montréal the place to be this weekend and into the week. Whether you’re here for Osheaga, Just For Laughs, Mondial des Jeux, Fantasia, fireworks or Montréal’s great food, you’re in for a fun time. Laughs for all International comedy festival Just For Laughs brings the funniest comedians in the world to Montréal this week – see gala showcases hosted by Nathan Lane, Jeff Goldblum, Carrie Fisher, P.K. Subban, David Cross, Howie Mandel and Sebastian Maniscalco and stand-alone shows by Sarah Silverman, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Aziz Ansari, Judd Apatow, Maria Bamford, Hannibal Buress and more comedy stars until August 1. A new edition of The Nasty Show makes for a seriously dirty good time, hosted by Mike Ward. JFL’s free street festival features Cirque Carpe Diem on July 29, Boogie Wonder Band on July 30, the kid-focused V8energy labyrinth, puppeteer Jacques Boutin, dancer-clown Fifi Bric-à-Brac, musical Jukebox, plus an array of food trucks. JFL’s “underground” program OFF-JFL welcomes Janeane Garofalo, Tom Green and more. Add to all that Zoofest, dedicated to wild indie humour and theatre. Osheaga overload Thousands of festival-goers flood Parc Jean-Drapeau from July 29 to 31 for Montréal’s biggest indie-rock, pop, hip hop and… / Read More →

Anime, manga and games come alive at Otakuthon

Anime fans – many brightly and elaborately dressed as their favourite characters – come out to play at Otakuthon at the Palais des congrès de Montréal, August 5 to 7. The second-biggest convention of its kind in Canada, Otakuthon celebrates the storytelling and artistry of classic and brand-new Japanese anime, manga and games. Similar to July’s Montréal Comiccon, Otakuthon’s 11th edition features an exhibition space full of colourful merchandise and artwork, a roster of talent ready to meet fans, and a series of panels and workshops by artists and other experts. Yet Otakuthon’s abundance of upbeat energy really comes from the fans: thousands arrive in costumes far more detailed than you’ll see at any Halloween party. Known as cosplay (costume + playing), it’s an essential part of the weekend – a way to try on anime life, make new friends, participate in activities and show off all the work that goes into making a costume. See the best costumes all in one place on stage at the evening Masquerade event on August 6 and during the World Cosplay Summit competition on August 7 Along with all the incredible costumes, based on everything from mainstream Sailor Moon to much lesser-known anime,… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: July 22 to 28

Montréal turns the fun dial all the way up this week for comedy fest Just For Laughs, games fest Mondial des Jeux, two nights of fireworks, numerous outdoor activities and sports in the sun, new films and live music – we’ve even got Pokémon GO covered! Mike Ward, scène @videotron 🎉 // 16 juillet Une photo publiée par Juste pour rire (@juste_pour_rire) le 17 Juil. 2016 à 14h02 PDT Comedy gold Laugh out loud for days during comedy festival Just For Laughs, bringing headliners Nathan Lane, Sarah Silverman, Jeff Goldblum, Aziz Ansari, Julie Louis-Dreyfus, Russell Peters, Hannibal Buress and more comedy stars to Montréal until August 1. JFL’s free street festival outside Place des Arts entertains day and night – don’t miss the Twins Parade on July 23 and the Vintage Car exhibition on July 24, kid-focused V8energy labyrinth, puppeteer Jacques Boutin and dancer-clown Fifi Bric-à-Brac, nightly musical Jukebox and an array of food trucks. See new editions of The Ethnic Show hosted by Rachid Badouri and The Nasty Show, a seriously dirty good time hosted by Mike Ward. JFL’s “underground” program OFF-JFL features Janeane Garofalo, Tom Green, Scott Thompson, The Lucas Bros and more. Add to all that Zoofest, dedicated to wild indie humour and a… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: July 15 to 21

Sunny days and almost too much fun to handle make Montréal the place to be in mid-July: comedy, circus and music festivals fill the city with out-of-this-world performances, alongside an international film festival, a games festival, a world-class fireworks competition and more entertainment for all ages. Festival laughs Star-studded comedy festival Just For Laughs starts up this week with a free outdoor street festival outside Place des Arts – don’t miss the Mado’s Got Talent drag queen show on July 19 and nightly musical Jukebox – plus new editions of The Ethnic Show hosted by Rachid Badouri at Club Soda, and The Nasty Show  at Métropolis, a seriously dirty good time hosted by Mike Ward, who also performs a free outdoor show outside Place des Arts on July 16 at 9 pm. JFL’s “underground” program OFF-JFL begins with one-woman show 24 Hours with Mary Lynn Rajskub and new stand-up from Tom Green, with more shows running throughout the fest. Meanwhile, for kids there’s the V8energy labyrinth on de Maisonneuve Boulevard, daytime shows by puppeteer Jacques Boutin, dancer-clown Fifi Bric-à-Brac and more. Add to all that Zoofest, dedicated to wild indie humour and a fab drag show or two, and Oh My Fest!, celebrating a breadth of local YouTuber talent…. / Read More →

Get ready to play at Mondial des jeux Loto-Québec 2016

Games go beyond the screen at Mondial des jeux Loto-Québec, a free family-friendly event that installs hundreds of board games, video games and larger-than-life physical games outdoors in downtown Montréal – making it the biggest outdoor gaming area in Canada! Hot on the heels of Montréal Comiccon, the third edition of Mondial des jeux Loto-Québec takes over a few blocks of de Maisonneuve Boulevard in the Quartier des spectacles July 16 to 30, with game developers, producers and retailers offering not only their wide world of games to all but their expertise as well – every weekday from 6 to 11 pm and weekends 3 to 11 pm. Try your hand at award-winning new games developed in Québec and Canada and battle it out in games you may know all too well, like chess and Scrabble. The event’s giant games are definitely the Mondial des jeux’s most eye-catching and novel – nowhere else will you find a foosball table this big. As well, nowhere else boasts this many free-to-play classic, free-to-play arcade games all in one place. There’s even an ongoing juggling workshop for those who want to solve first-hand that particular mystery of physics and coordination. Known for decades as the go-to store for… / Read More →

More new music to groove to at MEG Montréal

Dive right into Montréal’s hip hop, electro and indie-rock music scenes this July at Festival MEG Montréal. The 18th edition of the Montréal Electronique Groove summer music festival keeps the beat alive July 21 to 31, at venues all along Saint-Laurent Boulevard. MEG’s first weekend proves why Thursdays are the new Fridays, starting off the fest on July 21 with a feel-good techno party featuring French band Salut c’est cool, Jérôme Soudan’s Mimetic and local producer Mr. Deraspe at the SAT while over at La Sala Rossa it’s French vocal and multi-instrumental duo Mansfield.TYA, Montréal synth-folk-pop duo Co/ntry and  ethereal vocal-synth artist Stranger Familiar. Of course, Friday still lives up to the Friday-night hype with creative electronic dance music at the SAT from French artist Superpoze, the house-R’n’B of Club Cheval and Montréal’s Frame, while Wake Island, Syngja and Syzzors twist indie-rock into wild new forms at Divan Orange. Spend Saturday afternoon with notable DJ Omni and the fun live visuals of VJ Homing in a free “Mini MEG” 3 pm show for kids and adults alike at Divan Orange. Stay up late on Saturday night with hours of dance music from Robert Robert, La Fine Équipe and surprise guest DJs at airy dance venue… / Read More →

The best sports bars in Montréal

Montréal’s best sports bars only want to make sports fans happy – and they’ve got the multiple screens and cheering fans to prove it. If you’re heavy into hockey, can’t get enough college basketball or love a long baseball game, you won’t miss any of the sports action while you’re here. Downtown and Old Montréal: From pro sports to the Olympic Games, there’s somewhere to watch in every corner of the city, though Montréal’s biggest sports bars are located downtown. In the heart of the Village on Sainte-Catherine Street, find the ever-popular La Station des Sports, while nearby MVP Bar Sportif packs fans in on two floors. With two locations – near the Bell Centre and by the Old Port – bar and restaurant La Cage makes watching hockey, soccer, tennis, UFC matches, you name it, a favourite. Also near the Bell Centre, you’ll find beer specialists Bier Markt, hosting sports fans who also love a good craft beer, and m:brgr screening games and serving gourmet burgers and poutine. Further west on Sainte-Catherine, huge and popular Sharx features multiple sports on over 50 screens, pool tables, bowling lanes and a golf simulator. If you’re more into dark wood, brass accents and old-timers who can tell you a story or two about… / Read More →