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MONTREAL SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA’S NEW CONCERT HALL

Sound snobs, this one’s for you. Yeah, you know who you are – and you’re proud of it. After visiting a Maison Symphonique de Montréal, the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal’s new Concert Hall, this week I can breathe a pitch-perfect sigh of relief. The place is tailor-made for those who believe acoustics can make or break any musical performance. So get ready for a lot of performances of the make variety…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (SEPTEMBER 8-15)

There’s something in the air this week in Montreal, and it’s not just a cool autumn breeze – the city has gone even more arts crazy than usual – art is everywhere! Along with its friend’s music, theatre, dance and film. From the Latin Quarter’s OUMF festival to Quartier des Spectacles’ Arts Marathon, from Le Mois de la Photo to a tattoo art convention, Montreal has the arts covered this week, especially for those who wish to make the most of staying outdoors in these last warm weeks of the year…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (AUGUST 25-SEPTEMBER 1)

While Montreal’s warm weather will continue well into late September, the beginning of September is nevertheless considered the end of summer, just as with most places in the northern hemisphere. But at least summer goes out with a bang here! The St-Laurent Street Fair sees to that, with the main shopping, wining and dining strip closed to cars and open to fun and carousing all weekend. Add to that a film festival, a burlesque festival and plenty of music and art to take the sting out of summer’s end…

MUST-SEE BANDS AT POP MONTREAL 2011

This year Pop Montreal is ten years old. To celebrate this landmark, the people at Pop have created a lineup that reflects maturity, grace and, of course, one serious party. There are over 300 bands to see in only 5 days. This is an impossible amount of shows, but that’s the point. You’re supposed to be feverishly running around town in a delirious Pop Montreal frenzy. It’s okay though, you have all winter to recover.

THE LION KING MUSICAL ROARS INTO MONTREAL

The Lion King is an award-winning musical, one of the longest-running of all time. It has traversed the globe and finally the dazzling production has made a stop at Place Des Arts in Montreal from August 9 to September 4. Long live the king!

ARMAND VAILLANCOURT EXHIBITION IS YOUNG AT HEART

The Montreal Jazz Festival’s Galerie Lounge TD in the Quartier des Spectacles now has a fabulous, fun and free show featuring Armand Vaillancourt, a Quebec artist-icon. I recently the chance to meet Armand for the Montreal Buzz…

MONTREAL WORLD FILM FESTIVAL 2011

If you’re a true cinemaphile, you’ll be intrigued by the 383 films on display at the 35th annual Montreal World Film Festival, which runs August 18-28…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (AUGUST 11-18)

Every time I think Montreal is about to take a break from all the fun it keeps having, it pumps up the volume – this week, that means Montreal’s loud-and-proud Pride celebrations, an above-ground graffiti and skateboarding fest, five days of francophone-style blues and a weekend-long children’s festival. Plus the usual music, comedy, theatre (like The Lion King!) and general fun (always free!) in the sun…

FREE THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL: AUGUST

As August is a vacation time for many, whether they’re staying in Montreal or headed to a cottage on its outskirts, the city’s pace slows down somewhat – the festival frenzy of the Jazz Fest and Just for Laughs is replaced by more even-keeled cultural events at the Quartier des Spectacles and plenty of free entertainment outdoors in the parks and streets…

ARCADE FIRE PLAYING FREE SHOW IN MONTREAL ON SEPTEMBER 22

Montreal’s Arcade Fire have just announced that they’ll be playing a free show at the Quartier des Spectacles‘ Place des Festivals on September 22, 2011. The show, part of Pop Montreal‘s 10th anniversary festival, is a tip of the cap to their hometown. “Our band couldn’t exist without Montreal,” says the band’s Régine Chassagne. “After having had the chance to tour extensively around the world, we’re very excited to finally come home. And to do so the Montreal way, we hoped to play a free outside show, on the very last day of summer as a big ‘Thank you’ to the beautiful city we love so much…”