The sun is shining and Montreal is bustling with exciting events around town: the city’s new planetarium opens with a big bang this weekend as does an exhibition dedicated to The Beatles and an Elton John-inspired ballet, plus family-friendly fare, seasonal gourmet food, live music and even a visit from Oprah…
(all-ages entertainment) This Saturday marks the grand opening of Montreal’s new Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium, featuring two theatres with two different shows – both about the stars, one with a more scientific edge and the other more artistic – and an educational centre. Spend the morning of April 6 at Centaur Theatre play Furry Tails with a Twist, a funny and charming take on fairy tales. Learn to dance the flamenco at family-friendly and free event Bal de Dimanche, at Espace culturel Georges-Émile-Lapalme, on Sunday, April 7. And step back in time and bop to the music of Fab Four at Pointe-à-Callière‘ The Beatles in Montreal exhibition, featuring two floors of historical reportage and film clips, cool guitars and sometimes surprising memorabilia.
(food season) Springtime is full and delicious bloom at The FoodLab at the SAT, where chefs cook up creative Quebecois dishes that match the season – and stick around at the SAT for an immersive film-and-sound experience at P3rception, screening in the venue’s 360º Satosphere dome. Meanwhile, sugaring-off season continues, with maple-syrup-inspired menus and food aplenty at restaurants around town, especially at the Old Port’s La Cabane and at authentic sugar shacks just outside the city.
(theatrical moves) Whether you’re a fan of Elton John or a fan of modern ballet – or both – get thee to Love Lies Bleeding, a wonderfully colourful, over-the-top show created by Jean Grand-Maître and the Alberta Ballet, at Place des Arts, April 10-14. More drama unfolds April 5-6, as acclaimed Spanish flamenco dancer-choreographer María Pagés performs her show Autorretrato. Danish dance-theatre troupe Granhøj Dans moves to the music of Leonard Cohen, while cracking jokes and finding sombre moments in Dance Me to the End On/Off Love, to April 14 at the Centaur. Award-winning choreographer and performer Marie-Josée Chartier goes solo in Stria at the Segal Centre. And some of the best, most inventive burlesque dancers get together for rebellious, sexy, funny, life-affirming show Bad Ladies and The Detective, April 11 at Theatre Ste-Catherine.
(spring inspiration) Shake off winter and welcome the new and inspiring during An Evening with Oprah Winfrey, full of storytelling and audience interaction, at the Bell Centre on April 11. Blending classical music and contemporary pop, Canadian singing group The Tenors lift their voices to the light at the Maison Symphonique at Place des Arts on April 6, and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra welcomes spring with a series of fantastic concerts, beginning this week with Jean-François Rivest conducting the Franck Symphony featuring principal bass Ali Yazdanfar, April 5 and 7.
(music time) Friday night begins with amazing British soul singer-songwriter Lianne La Havas at Theatre Corona and the rather transcendent saxophone magic of Colin Stetson at the Musee d’art contemporain. On Saturday, April 6, none other than Boyz II Men make a soulful comeback at Theatre Olympia, hot British music maker Mika puts on a fab show at Theatre Corona, indie-rock out with Wavves, Fidlar and more at Sala Rossa, and Australian electronic music maker Flume brings his melodic bass to Le Belmont. On April 7, French turntable DJ group C2C spins their own tunes and more at Metropolis. There’s also a whole lot of rock n’ roll to keep us up late on a weeknight: on Monday, April 8, Metz get loud at Sala Rossa; on April 9, experience the garage-rock wildness of The King Khan & BBQ Show, with Bloodshot Bill at Il Motore, on April 10, don’t miss the California-rock realness of Redd Kross and UBT at Il Motore, and on April 11, Toronto shows us its rock n’ roll chops with Born Ruffians and Moon King at Sala Rossa. Meanwhile, on April 10 and 11, popular French-language acoustic reggae group Tryo plays two shows at Metropolis.