Warm, sunny days return to Montreal just as festival season begins, filling not only the Quartier des Spectacles in the heart of downtown Montreal with activity, music and entertainment, but the whole town, from Old Montreal to the Olympic Stadium.
(city activity) Get the whole family into the very Montreal swing of things outdoors at Quartier des Spectacles where 21 Swings invites people to be a part of an interactive musical experience, simply by swinging, triggering notes with each sway and creating melodies with others – plus, all weekend, 21 Swings is accompanied by interactive video projection 21 Obstacles, on the façade of UQAM’s President-Kennedy pavilion. Watch more bodies in motion as the Montreal Impact, the city’s Major League Soccer team, celebrates its 20th year – catch home games against Chicago on April 27 and again Toronto on May 1 at the newly expanded Saputo Stadium, out at the Olympic Park, also where Space for Life lives, home the Biodome, Botanical Gardens, Insectarium and the new Montreal Planetarium.
(theatre & dance) The entire tale of Harry Potter and friends gets the comedic treatment in British two-man show Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Experience, a parody of all seven Harry Potter books in 70 hilarious minutes, at Theatre Corona April 25-28. Persian music and contemporary dance merge in Sinha Danse Company’s new production Sunya, for four dancers and three musicians, part of the Danse Danse spring season, to April 27 at Cinquième Salle. Imago Theatre presents Thinking of YU, a play about a woman’s encounter with the harrowing story of Yu Dongyue, a young Chinese journalist imprisoned for 17 years for throwing paint on a portrait of Mao, at Centaur Theatre (453 St-Francois-Xavier) in Old Montreal. And experience all kinds of contemporary dance, including free workshops and performances at the Montreal Fine Arts Museum, as part of Quebec Danse 2013, to April 29.
(sound & light) See and hear the latest in high-tech electronic music and art performance at the Elektra Festival, May 1-5, featuring over 40 local and international artists such as French musician Mondkopf, visual artist Sabrina Ratté and sound artist Jesse Osborne-Lanthier, and video artist Hugo Arcier on May 2 alone. More visual and audio abundance is in store at the Society for Art and Technology, screening P3rception, surround-sound-and-image films on the 360° screen in the Satosphere dome, to April 29. And the National Film Board of Canada presents The Clockmakers, an experimental, immersive, four-screen film installation, screening for free at the Salle d’exposition in the main foyer of Place des Arts.
(seen & read) Art abounds at Papier 13, a contemporary art fair for Montreal’s commercial art galleries, who will show contemporary works on paper by all manner of talented artists, April 26-28 at the corner of Bleury and Ste-Catherine in the Quartier des Spectacles – with round table discussions and guided tours throughout the weekend. See new films from Africa, the Caribbean and the diverse African diaspora at film festival Vues d’Afrique , April 26-May 5 at various locations. And dive into the world of books and the authors who write them at the Blue Metropolis Montreal International Literary Festival, featuring talks, readings, discussions and more at Hôtel 10
(10 Sherbrooke W.), to April 28.
(live music) Montreal’s own Jonas & The Massive Attraction come home on their Live Out Loud Tour, wooing fans old and new at the lovely L’Astral on April 27, while Vancouver metal band Bison B.C. rattles minds and bodies at Il Motore (179 Jean Talon W.) and Montreal indie-rock duo Saxsyndrum, along with Holobody, play Casa del Popolo. New Jersey indie-rockers Titus Andronicus come up to play with The So So Glos and Young Lungs, at Club Lambi (4465 St-Laurent) on May 30. Pop diva and Grammy Award winner Rihanna returns to wow the crowd at the Bell Centre on May 1, while Denver, Colorado’s beloved The Lumineer folk-rock the night away with openers You Won’t, at Metropolis, and even thought it’s not Saturday night, Scottish rock band Bay City Rollers has a good time at Theatre Corona. Charming singer Jill Barber serenades with a special show of standards, French covers and more as part of the Montreal Jazz Festival’s Jazz All-Year Round Series, May 2 at Metropolis. And for a taste of what’s super popular in French-language Montreal rock, check out Les Trois Accords, putting on three shows at Le National (1220 Ste-Catherine E.), May 2-4.